By Carolyn Burris, MS, Nutrition Counselor of Forum Health Knoxville
Feeling under the weather and a cold or virus coming on?
You have choices! So, let’s take a healthy step by making this tasty immune fighting soup. Here are some of the benefits in the soup’s ingredients.
- Coconut Oil– has 2 important compounds, lauric and caprylic acid, which are anti-bacterial and anti-viral.
- Garlic– contains allicin, which is majorly anti-bacterial and boosts T-cells that fight off viruses in the bloodstream.
- Turmeric– full of very potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory bioactive curcuminoids: curcumin, bisdemethoxycurcumin and demethoxycurcumin.
- Mushrooms– multiple phytochemicals such as betaglucan, which enhances the activity of several different types of immune cells including natural killer cells that attack and destroy virus-infected cells and potentially cancer cells!
- Bok Choy– rich in vitamin C which is an antioxidant that protects against free radicals and vitamin A, essential for the immune system to function well.
- Kale– excellent source of vitamin C and iron; loaded with powerful antioxidants such as quercetin and kaempferol.
- Ginger– contains gingerol , a bioactive compound rich in anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.
Now, let’s get cooking with this delicious healthy soup!
Immune- Boosting Soup for the Soul
Servings: 8-12 medium bowls
-1 large yellow/red/sweet organic onion, chopped
-4-6 organic garlic cloves, minced
-2-3 organic celery stalks, sliced
-2 medium organic carrots, sliced
-1 lb cremini/shiitake mushrooms
-1- 1.5 tsp whole mineral salt such as Celtic or Redmond salt
-¼- 1/2 tsp black pepper
-1 tsp organic turmeric
-6 cups water plus 6 cups broth of choice (bone, mushroom, vegetable, organic preferred)
-3-4 heads baby bok choy, bottoms chopped off
-1/2 head organic kale, chopped and de-stemmed (curly, red or flat leaf and can add more if desired)
-1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger (more if desired); can add other herbs/spices as well
-optional: add 4-8 ounces of organic turkey or chicken breast
- Chop off the bottom of the stem from the mushrooms and discard. Separate stems from tops and slice tops and remaining stem into large pieces. You will only discard the very bottom of the stems, not the full stems because they are packed with the most nutrition.
- Heat up coconut oil in a large pot over medium heat.
- Add onions and sauté for 5 minutes or until translucent.
- Add in garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Let the chopped garlic rest for 10 minutes before adding. This allows the garlic to form more allicin and is not destroyed in cooking!
- Add in celery, carrots and mushrooms and saute for about 5-10 minutes or until mushrooms have wilted.
- Add in spices and water/broth and bring to a boil. Add chicken/turkey at this time if using this option. You can brown it for 3-5 minutes in coconut oil spray if desired before adding into soup.
- Then let simmer, covered for 45 minutes to 2 hours or so. (this boosts the nutrition!)
- Add bok choy and kale in the last 10 minutes of cooking to wilt.
- Serve warm or store for up to 1 week in the refrigerator. Enjoy!!