If you’re down with a cold or a fever, you’re likely to reach for a warm bowl of chicken soup. After all, chicken soup has been utilized as a potent home remedy for colds since the 12th century, making it a potentially effective (and delicious) practice to continue today.1 However, making homemade soup takes time so, instead, people reach for packaged and processed soup that’s lackluster in flavor, contains artificial ingredients and additives and is packed in containers that may leach chemicals into the food.
Instead of putting yourself in harms way, make some of this Soothing Chicken Ginger Soup With Chayote and Moringa Leaves. This recipe takes chicken soup to the next level because it uses real, healthy and flavorful ingredients such as organic free-range chicken, ginger and colorful vegetables.
Soothing Chicken Ginger Soup With Chayote and Moringa Leaves
Cook Time: 30 minutes
- In a pot, heat the oil and sauté the onion until softened. Then add the garlic and ginger and stir until aromatic.
- Place the chicken in the pot and stir-fry until it has rendered its own fat, but do not allow the chicken to brown.
- Pour in the water and fish sauce and bring to a boil. Season with salt and pepper. Simmer for 30 minutes.
- Add the chayote and continue to simmer until it softens. Adjust taste using salt as needed.
- Add the Moringa leaves and continue to simmer for about a minute and then remove from the heat.
Have a Sip of This Soothing Chicken Ginger Soup With Chayote and Moringa Leaves
Learning how to make chicken soup can pay off, as it’s a versatile recipe that you can customize to fit your needs. What makes this chicken soup special is the addition of Moringa leaves and chayote. Although these vegetables may be unfamiliar to some, the health benefits you can get from them deserve recognition.
Massive Benefits From Moringa Leaves
The tiny, deep-green leaves of the Moringa oleifeira tree, native to South Asia, have been used as part of traditional medicine for centuries. By adding Moringa leaves to dishes, you can allow your body to soak up benefits like:
- Impressive nutritional and antioxidant content: Moringa contains high amounts of potassium, iron, calcium, vitamin A, protein and essential amino acids. The leaves are rich in antioxidants like beta-carotene, quercetin, chlorogenic acid and vitamin C. They are high in fiber as well, essentially working like a mop for your intestines by helping clean up excess grunge from an unhealthy diet.2
- Potential in maintaining healthy cholesterol levels: Moringa leaves have cholesterol-lowering properties. An animal study discovered that the effects were comparable to simvastatin, a cholesterol-lowering drug.3
- Capability in lowering blood sugar levels: Plant compounds in the leaves contribute to Moringa’s potential anti-diabetic effects.4 Results from two separate studies conducted on diabetes patients and women revealed that the subjects were able to reduce their fasting blood sugar levels.5,6
- Protection against arsenic toxicity: Moringa seeds and leaves can provide a defense against possible effects of arsenic toxicity that may be caused by eating commonly contaminated staple foods like rice.7
Add These Vegetables for Vibrance and Flavor
While you have the freedom to add any and as many vegetables as you want to your chicken soup, give these a try today:
• Chayote: The pear-shaped chayote imparts a mild and sweet flavor to any dish. Because it doesn’t have cholesterol and unhealthy fats, it’s a good option for people who wish to lose weight and control bad cholesterol levels.8
Chayote contains dietary fiber, antioxidants, iron, manganese, phosphorus, zinc, potassium, copper and vitamins B1, B2, B6 and C. If you’re pregnant, consider eating more chayote, as its high folate content assists with preventing neural tube defects among babies and helps with cell division and DNA synthesis.
When buying this vegetable, pick medium-sized and apple-green chayote that’s fresh and firm to the touch. Do not buy large or over-mature chayote because the skin will be tough and will have a stringy and unappetizing pulp. The same goes for chayote with surface cuts, pits, cracks or bruises, although you can still buy produce with mild bruises and/or scratches.
• Ginger: If you love using ginger, this is a good decision, because it has antibacterial, antiviral, antioxidant and antiparasitic properties.9 Ginger may also help with memory improvement, as a study revealed that healthy, middle-aged women who took ginger extracts over a two-month period had enhanced attention and cognitive processing capabilities, without side effects.10 Furthermore, ginger can help address conditions like:
◦ Inflammation: Researchers discovered that regular ginger intake helped participants reduce muscle soreness, boost agility and movement and lessen swelling, such as knee pain.11
◦ Nausea and other digestion-related concerns: Ginger can help with improving digestion, relieving colic and alleviating nausea, such as morning sickness and motion sickness.
The Basics of Making Healthy Chicken Soup
When making chicken soup, it's important to use organic and pasture-raised chicken, instead of chicken that comes from CAFOs (conventional animal feeding operations).
Organic pasture-raised chickens are allowed to roam freely outdoors on pasture and consume their natural diet of seeds, green plants, insects and worms, increasing the nutrients in the chicken. Meanwhile, CAFO chickens are usually given artificial feeds laced with harmful growth additives, hormones and antibiotics, paving the way for poor-quality poultry. CAFO chickens are often cramped in small and dirty living spaces, increasing the risk for bacterial contamination.
Although it might take more effort to look for a farmer who produces organic free-range chicken, this can be worth it and will allow you to have peace of mind knowing that you're not harming yourself or your family with what you serve.
Instead of throwing away leftover chicken bones, set these aside to make nutritious bone broth. This method is inexpensive and can provide you with priceless nutrients such as calcium, magnesium, chondroitin, glucosamine and arginine. You wouldn't want to miss out on bone broth's positive impacts, which include:
✓ Assisting with healing and sealing the gut and promoting healthy digestion: Bone broth contains a gelatin called a hydrophilic colloid.
It plays a role in attracting and holding liquids, including digestive juices that aid in supporting proper digestion.
✓ Decreasing joint pain and inflammation: This is due to nutrients like chondroitin, sulphates, glucosamine and other compounds that are extracted when cartilage is boiled down.
✓ Preventing infections caused by cold and flu viruses: A study discovered that chicken soup possesses medicinal capabilities that can help combat infections.12
✓ Fighting inflammation: Amino acids in bone broth, namely glycine, proline and arginine, have anti-inflammatory effects.
✓ Promoting strong and healthy bones: Bone broth contains high amounts of calcium, magnesium and other nutrients that have major roles in healthy bone formation.
✓ Boosting healthy hair and nail growth: This benefit also comes from the gelatin in bone broth.
+ Sources and References