I hadn’t really dug into the legitimacy of the chicken soup remedy but I figured it was time to dig a little deeper. As it turns out, there really are some good reasons why we should take chicken soup when we’ve got a cold.
Here’s what a bowl of chicken soup does for your cold:
- Clears congested sinuses –
- hot fluids dilate the blood vessels, increase blood flow, and allow the mucous to flush out and relieve the congestion.
- improves the function of the cilia (tiny hairs in our noses) that trap and clear out contagions.
- chicken contains carnosine which reduces inflammation in the upper respiratory tract by stopping the migration of white blood cells.
- Helps fight the cold by providing hydration – chicken soup contain salt and water which are great for hydration.
Science has begun to support what mothers have understood for centuries. The heat, salt, and hydration provided by chicken soup may actually fight the cold virus (NIH, 2012). Laboratory studies have shown that ingredients of a chicken soup with vegetables could kill viral cells and prevent the growth of new ones (Rennard, et al., 2000). The soup may also provide an anti-inflammatory effect in the upper respiratory tract that helps soothe symptoms (Rennard, et al., 2000). Unfortunately, the benefits of chicken soup appear to be limited by how quickly the soup leaves the body (Babizhayev, et al., 2012). – Healthline
- Chicken soup for colds and flu: Does it really help? – CBSNews
- Chicken Soup Really Is Good for a Cold – ABCNews
- Will chicken soup really cure your cold? BBC Good Food
- The truth behind natural cold remedies – Healthline
What are the Key Ingredients that Provide its Wholesome Benefits?
According to BBC Good Food, you need to include these ingredients:
- Onions, garlic and vegetables for phytonutrients
- Chicken bones which contain gelatine, glucosamine and chondroitin in the joint tissues.
Chicken Soup Recipes
So what chicken soup for the cold recipes can you keep up your sleeves? The “ABC Soup” recipe which contains chicken, onions, carrots, tomatoes and celery which sounds like it fits the bill pretty well. If you want to up the ante, you could add some ginger. Although there is currently insufficient evidence to support these claims, ginger has a long history of being associated as a natural remedy for coughs, sore throats, nasal congestion, tummy upset, and headaches (which are all symptoms you might experience with a cold).
There are also more chicken soup recipes that you can find from Home Remedies for Life. If you’re not up for making your own chicken soup, not to worry, Dr. Stephen Rennard, a pulmonary expert at the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha, found that even canned chicken soups work, too.