top of page

Chicken Soup – Food for Body & Soul

Put a chicken in a pot with water, a few carrots, onions, peppercorns and a little salt. Cook until the meat falls from the bone and serve it to someone with a cold! They instantly feel better…why?

In 1978 in the USA a “chicken soup study” was conducted by three lung specialists at Mount Sinai Medical Centre in Miami Beach, Florida. Intrigued by the healing mystique surrounding the savoury brew, they had 15 people (with bad colds) sip hot chicken soup, hot water and cold water. Then they measured how quickly and easily mucus and air flowed through the nasal passages, the result was that those that had chicken soup fared better than those who didn’t. The chicken soup recipients had eased nasal congestion, than those who sipped hot or cold water.

It was first thought that the heat of the soup had contributed to the superior results of the chicken soup patients because of increased nasal velocity brought on by heat.

So why didn’t the hot water patients achieve the same results, you might ask? The soup’s healing power may lie in its savoury aroma and taste which appeared to possess an additional substance for increasing nasal mucous velocity, reported the researchers. What this substance is remains a mystery.

More recently, researchers suspect that part of the healing power of chicken soup lies in the bird itself. Chicken contains a natural amino acid call “cysteine”, which is chemically similar to a drug called “acetylcysteine”. Doctors use acetylcysteine to treat people with bronchitis and other respiratory infections. Acetylcysteine was originally derived from chicken feathers and chicken skin.

Getting the most from your Chicken Soup

Sip it often

The therapeutic effect of chicken soup lasts about 30 minutes according to the Miami Beach study. Good idea to make a large batch, keep in the fridge so that you can heat the required amount in the microwave as often as you need it.

Spice it up

Adding spices like garlic, chillies and ginger will speed up the soup's de-clogging power.

Fresh is best

For those of us who have someone at home to assist in the making and perhaps serving of the brew always try to make your Chicken soup the traditional way. For those that don’t, you can certainly get some terrific "over-the-counter" soups from a health food or organic supermarket.

Chicken Soup


Chicken 1 medium

Olive Oil 2 tablespoons

Onion, brown 2 medium

Garlic crushed 3 cloves

Red chilli (Optional) 1

Ginger grated (Optional) 1 knob

Carrots 2 medium

Celery 3 stalks (include leaves)

Salt and Pepper to taste


  • In a large saucepan/pot add a little oil

  • Cut onions, garlic chilli and ginger and sauté for a few minutes

  • Place whole or cut chicken into pot

  • Fill with hot water until just covering the chicken

  • Slice carrots and celery add to pot

  • Place lid on pot and simmer for about an hour

  • Taste and add salt and pepper to required taste.

Have a lovely warm bowl of chicken soup, you will feel better even if you're not sick!

...and remember...have a fabulous retirementLIFE....

Recent Posts
bottom of page