Chicken Soup For the Soul

by Lauren on December 10, 2012

Thank you all for your well wishes.  I’m so happy to report that I’m feeling so much better!

Nothing a z-pack and half a bottle of aspirin can’t fix, right?

I was so grateful to wake up this morning feeling like a new person.  When you’re sick for three days straight, you start to feel like you may never be back to your normal functioning self.

I also was happy to be able to workout again after doing absolutely nothing since last Thursday.  I taught a late morning RPM class, vowing to take it easy on myself.  My heart rate was definitely more elevated than normal, but it went well and I felt great afterwards.

While I definitely don’t like to let myself get to the point of medical assistance, I try not to solely rely on drugs as my only form of relief.  There are so many natural and mindless things that one can do in order to rev up the immune system, all of which I practiced religiously this past weekend.

Here are a few of my go-to natural immune building practices:

  • Hydrate – Even over hydrate.  When your sick, your body will automatically become dehydrated and it’s essential to keep the fluids flowing. For every glass of water you normally drink, times that by 2 when you’re under the weather.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar- I still do my daily ACV cocktail for a multitude of health reasons, but I especially make certain to gulp this during illness.  I also heard that ACV + honey is known to knock out the common cold.  I haven’t tried this yet, but it’s definitely worth a shot.
  • The Neti Pot- This magically little tea pot brings me instant relief from congestion and sinus pressure.  If you’ve never used the neti pot, I highly recommend spending the $10 to keep one on hand.  It works by clearing out your nasal passages using only warm salt water.  The process itself is something you’d probably want to do alone, or else you may risk loosing all sense of dignity with your friends and family, but trust me, it works!
  • Vitamin C- I always make sure I’m increasing my vitamin c intake during sickness, particularly through certain foods.  Citrus, peppers, kale, spinach, broccoli, brussels sprouts, fresh herbs such as thyme and parsley are just some of top rated foods for containing this vitamin.  If I can’t get enough through food itself, I’ll take a supplement.
  • Rest – This is a no brainer but rest as much as possible.  Too many people resist proper rest during sickness, which only results in a prolonged diagnosis and potential problems long term.  As hard as it is, do your body a favor and shut it down for at least 24 hours before resuming any physical or even mental activity.

While the above practices are all very suitable methods to help relief  an illness, most of them also work as extremely viable measures in preventative health.

As much as I try to practice good preventative health, there are still times when the germs win.  In those cases, I like to admit defeat, bow out, and resort to childhood remedies like dad’s chicken noodle soup.

Growing up, my dad made a lot of soup, but one in particular would come out during the peak of flu season.  His famous Chicken Noodle was the highlight of many meals on wheels deliveries, bringing a comforting nostalgic feeling to the weary.

A few years ago, when I was released from the hospital for a bad Crohn’s attack, my dad was not far behind stocking my fridge full of soup.  ”It’s the cure for the soul,” he would say.  And he was right.

This past weekend, I channeled my dad’s warm heart, and put together my own version of a “cure all” soup.  It’s not quite like dad’s, but it definitely did the trick.

White Bean and Swiss Chard Chicken Noodle Soup

White Bean and Swiss Chard Chicken Noodle Soup
Entree, Soup
6 1/12 cup servings
 
Ingredients
  • 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 large carrots, peeled and diced
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 14-ounce cans reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 cups water
  • ⅓ of a 1 pound box of angel hair pasta, broken into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 15-ounce can cannellini beans, rinsed
  • 1 2-pound roasted chicken, skin discarded, meat removed from bones and shredded (4 cups)
  • 2 cups red swiss chard, stems removed, roughly chopped
Instructions
  1. Heat oil in a large Dutch oven over medium high heat. Add carrots and season with salt and pepper. Cook until carrots begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add fresh rosemary and stir.
  2. Pour broth and water into the pan. Add the pasta and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until pasta is al dente, about 10 to 12 minutes.
  3. Stir in beans and chicken. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Add the swiss chard, cook for an additional 5 minutes or until chard is wilted.

 

Obviously, you don’t need to be under the weather to enjoy this soup, but for some reason, it just tastes better when you are.

Serve your piping hot bowl of hearty chicken soup with a chewy slice of bread, for dipping of course.

Enjoy!

 

Something to Check Out:

And for those of you that aren’t sick but still craving a soul soothing soup, be sure to check out my recipe for Slow Cooker Sweet Potato Black Bean Chili on the Shiloh Farms Blog.

 

Question:

What are some natural methods you practice when you’re ill? 

 

Don’t forget : I’m giving away a pair of Therafit shoes on this post!  Entries accepted until Friday, so make sure you leave a comment for your chance to win a brand new pair of the most comfortable kicks! 

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{ 16 comments }

Anne December 10, 2012 at 8:20 pm

So glad you’re feeling better! It’s funny how I never appreciate simply feeling good until I am sick and realize I’ve been taking the every day for granted.
That soup looks fantastic!

EricA December 10, 2012 at 8:31 pm

So glad to hear youre feeling better!!!! That soup? Major drool!! I lean heavily on soup, water, ginger ale, and rest when i feel yucky!

Katie @ Talk Less, Say More December 10, 2012 at 8:58 pm

Glad you’re starting to feel better! I’m very much a tea, rest, water, and vitamin-c/fresh juice kind of girl when I’m feeling under the weather! :)

Valerie December 10, 2012 at 9:13 pm

Soup looks great. My go to is vitamin C

Anne December 10, 2012 at 9:42 pm

Lemon water!

Angela @ Beauty in Strength December 10, 2012 at 11:16 pm

Glad you’re feeling better! Tea, soup, and LOTS of rest. :)

Erica @ For the Sake of Cake December 11, 2012 at 6:35 am

I like your ideas! I very rarely get sick (and I probably just cursed myself!). I think I’ve built up an immunity being around kids every day!

Danielle @ itsaharleyyylife December 11, 2012 at 8:14 am

I bet this soup def made you feel better! (: looks delicious!

Anonymous December 11, 2012 at 8:25 am

That soup sounds amazing! Chicken noodle soup is always a must for me when I’m sick. The swiss chard and beans add even more nutrients.

Danielle @ clean food creative fitness December 11, 2012 at 9:33 am

Love this recipe! Homemade chicken soup always makes me feel better in no time and I love everything you added in here. Such an awesome recipe!

Diane @ Life of Di. December 11, 2012 at 9:48 am

That soup looks great! Such a fun twist on typical chicken noodle soup. I’m all about soups and stews for the Winter so I will add this to my ‘to-make’ list :)

Gillian @ Money After Graduation December 11, 2012 at 11:11 am

Glad you’re feeling better. I had the flu this last week for 4 days, it was awful and I too was starting to feel like I’d never be a properly functioning person again ! The recipe looks yummy!

Katie December 11, 2012 at 4:40 pm

Glad you’re feeling so much better, my dear! Being truly sick (as opposed to faking it in my teenage years, ha!) is so disorienting as an adult because I feel like we get used to controlling most of our lives. When it’s out of whack, it feels awful! That soup looks great, even though I don’t eat chicken :-)

Julie @ Better Life with Burgers December 11, 2012 at 8:04 pm

Glad you’re feeling better! I just got over being sick myself, and this soup sure would have helped. :-) Take care of yourself!

Lisa December 12, 2012 at 1:13 pm

That soup looks amazing! Hope it helps!

Whenever I start feeling sick I drink Bolthouse’s C-Boost, it has a ton of vitamin C (as the name suggests) but it comes from fruit so it is natural and your not downing nasty pills or drinks.

Kris | iheartwellness.com December 12, 2012 at 2:32 pm

So happy to hear you are feeling better, girl! I love the look of this soup, yum! I’m like you, hydration is key!! If its a sore throat I swear by gargling with cayenne pepper and water…just a pinch will do ya!

xxoo

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