For most of us, the best part of any year has arrived. October to December is party time, and everything in our environment reflects that. Festival follows festival, the weather is cooler, and there’s a party every night. All of which leads to a not-so-little diet dilemma. Party food, as we all know, dumps diets into dustbins. And cool weather leads to raging appetites. In this scenario, you need a secret weapon. And it’s very easy to come by. It’s soup. Here’s why it’s better for you than you ever imagined.
1. It’s easy to make
Soups are quick to think up and even quicker to put together. Get hold of leftovers – vegetables, grains, chicken, use your imagination, add some basic herbs – and a sustaining meal in a bowl is ready for your stomach. Just about anything can be added to a soup, which is why it is such a great fit for everyone. Hot or cold, spicy or mild, thick or clear, meaty or vegetarian, there is a soup for every taste.
2. You can store it for a WEEK
You can make quantities of soup and freeze it for later. It can be kept for a week at least. In fact, soup often tastes better after it’s settled in the fridge for a while. And contrary to popular belief, soups travel well. You just need a container with a top that seals well.
3. It’s low-fat, low-cal too
Unless you drink cream or cheese-based soups, they fill you up without a lot of calories. Most soups are low in fat, saturated fat and cholesterol; almost all are easily digestible; and they help restore the balance of water in your diet, which keeps blood pressure under control (just go easy on the salt shaker). This makes them perfect for this quarter of the year. We all know that our diets should include as much nutrient dense and fibre heavy foods as possible – it is easy to sneak all this into a soup. Also most cooking methods remove nutrients from vegetables, but that doesn’t happen with soup.
4. It’s comforting
While soups don’t release mood-boosting endorphins like chocolate does, they are still a perfect remedy for bad moods. There’s nothing like soup to warm you, and that leads to a sense of comfort.
5. It keeps you well
Plus, soups help keep seasonal illnesses away. Just make sure you add at least one of these ingredients – garlic, onion, or ginger. Garlic and onions are natural antibiotics and ginger is a great digestive with super antiviral properties. Add some mushrooms too. These promote the growth of white blood cells that make your body fighting fit.
Calories in a bowl of soup…
Clear soup (vegetable, chicken, lamb, seafood) 20-40 cal
Packet soup: 100 -150 cal
Cream of (mushroom, chicken, tomato) soup: 200-220 cal
From HT Brunch, October 9
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