Food: Chinese soup is magic
Curative powers or just a delicious meal? Maybe both
report that more than half of the chicken noodle soup sold in the United
States is sold during the flu season.
This is a no-brainer, as we all know that chicken soup is supposed to be
a cure-all, at least psychosomatically, for the cold and flu.
While Western chicken noodle soup offers the chicken broth, which has
proven decongestant powers, Chinese chicken-based soups take the healing
process one step further by mixing in herbs and yin and yang.
Lisa Wu, the owner of the Golden Palace in Milford, said that as soon as
her son starts to come down with a cold, she feeds him soup with a dash
of hot pepper.
asks for it because he knows it will make him feel better. It is a
tradition in our culture and it really works,” she said.
While modern science has confirmed that an amino acid in chicken acts as
a decongestant, chicken-based soups have long been used as a curative in
Asian cultures. Historians have discovered that 10th-century Egyptians
were downing bowls of chicken soup to beat the common cold.
Soup, although a simple conglomeration of flavors, is actually complex
when it comes to healing. Chinese medicine is based on the forces of yin
and yang, which can be represented by ingredients.
represents negative energy and the cooling forces, while yang represents
positive energy and the warming forces. The Chinese believe that when
you are sick, the two forces are out of balance and the life force (qi)
in your body has been disrupted.
you have a cold, it’s because your body has too much yin and you should
drink a soup with yang ingredients, such as chicken, designed to restore
the balance. A fever should be treated with a yin soup.
it is the use of herbs and spices beyond salt and pepper that may make a
difference between western and eastern chicken soups.
big difference is that Chinese soups often contain ginger, a yang food
ubiquitous in Chinese cooking, believed to aid digestion, and garlic, a
common cure- all.
that it is clear that Chinese soups may actually be a better option to
beat that cold or flu than Grandma’s simple recipe, where do you get it
when the sniffles hit?
Fortunately, almost every Chinese restaurant offers a selection of
soups. Good news: they are ready for take-out and often very economical.