Chicken Orzo Soup

The saying chicken soup is good for the soul is one I’ve always loved. What’s funny about that phrase is that when you Google it what pops up the most in the search is Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen, two motivational speakers who, in 1993, had the simple idea that people could help each other by sharing stories about their lives.

chicken orzo soup

Canfield and Hanson took their stories and went on to write, Chicken Soup for the Soul. This book quickly became one of the most popular and cherished books ever published, selling millions of copies worldwide. Canfield and Hansen titled their famous book such because they simply wanted their book to “soothe and provide comfort, just like their grandmothers’ cooking”.

chicken orzo soup

Many grandmothers I know have long preached the belief that chicken soup is great for healing a cold, but now research is backing up those claims. Researchers have frequently taken a closer look at the potential health benefits of chicken soup in an attempt to understand why it’s such an effective tonic for treating/healing the common cold. Below are some of those findings and it’s rather convincing.

  • A 1990 report found that soup broth may help improve the function of cilia in the nose. The cilia are what help prevent contagions from getting into the body.
  • Hot fluids have long been beloved to help relieve stuffiness and congestion.
  • Chicken soup is also believed to help reduce inflammation, which often results as the immune system works to fight the cold virus.

chicken orzo soup

Connected to the health benefits of chicken soup, studies, referenced in an issue of Psychological Science I stumbled upon recently, show that comfort food, like Canfield and Hanson believe, actually brings up associations of positive relationships and makes us feel comfortable and less alone.

chicken orzo soup

In one study conducted volunteers who thought of chicken noodle soup as comfort food had greater access to relationship-related words when they ate a bowl of the soup. I found this fascinating. In a second experiment, volunteers who had secure attachment styles and wrote about comfort foods did not feel as lonely. Whether it’s chicken soup, mashed potatoes, or chocolate chip cookies straight from the oven, comfort food nourishes our hunger and fills our need to belong.

chicken orzo soup

Truthfully, chicken orzo soup is one of my favorite healing soups that is soothing and comforting in the winter months. Like a great chocolate chip cookie, most people have their go-to chicken soup recipe, so trying another can often come with trepidation. But I encourage you to do it anyway. My chicken orzo soup is an uncomplicated one that delivers a sensational result. I add orzo to my soup as an alternative to large noodles which I feel creates a richer, almost creamier mouth feel from the pasta starch. Finishing this comfort food with a splash of lemon juice gives it a nice bright, slightly acidic flavor I love. Whether it’s comfort for seeking or a stubborn cold you just can’t shake, give this chicken orzo soup a go and feel the healing from inside.

About the Author

Andrea Potischman

I am a professionally trained NYC chef turned CA mom and food blogger. I post about real food, with doable ingredient lists that are family friendly.

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