Soups can help meet your recommended daily servings of vegetables. These are truly wholesome low calorie beverages. Due to their high water content, they provide a sense of satiety or fullness. Soups contain vitamin, minerals and antioxidants in abundance making them extremely nutrient dense but caloric density is very low!
Variety of ingredients to increase nutritional value of soups
- Lean chicken pieces
- Pulses such as green gram dhal, red gram dhal, etc
- Sprouts such as mong, chana, etc
- Legumes such as rajmah, chickpea
- Paneer/cottage cheese
Adding these not only increases it nutritive value further but also improves its satiety value
Tips for making healthy soups:
- Add leaves such as radish greens, carrot leaves, beet leaves to soups as their taste and colour will be masked by other vegetables
- Use some spices such as cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, etc that have therapeutic effect
- Do not use too much cream or butter but instead use a teaspoon of ghee or olive oil as a fat source to improve the absorption of the fat soluble vitamins
- Avoid using much salt; instead use sea salt, rock salt, pepper and other natural seasonings to enhance flavor
We highly recommend taking soups at dinner so as to reduce total food intake. Soups are easy on the stomach and make for an ideal meal accompaniment before retiring for the day. The variety of vegetables and herbs added to soups help increase body’s defense against infection and inflammation. There are many ways to innovate with flavours and textures in soups to keep you and your family excited and enthused!
Dr Pooja Chhawcharia is the Senior Nutritionist at eKincare with over 7 years of experience in Nutrition education, diet counseling and research. She is a Registered Dietician with the Indian Dietetic Association and Certified Diabetes Educator recognized by the International Diabetes federation . She is also interested in ancillary sciences such as Yoga and Naturopathy.