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Why is soup a good meal for winter?
As the mercury drops over winter we often seek out warmer foods rather than the barbecues and salads of summer. It can be easy to reach for more creamy & stodgy foods, and neglect our vegetables.
One great way of packing the vegies in and satisfying the need for ‘warmer’ foods over winter is soup. Regularly cooking homemade soup, such as with the Tefal Soup and Co, can help you on your way to achieving your recommended daily vegetable intake and could also help you reduce unhealthy levels of salt in your diet.
Pop some homemade soup in a flask and bring to work – a great way to get at least two of your five vegies per day. Remember to serve a wholegrain bread roll to boost the fibre.
Tinned soup is often high in salt – what are the health problems associated with a diet high in sodium?
Too much salt can raise your blood pressure, which puts you at increased risk of health problems such as heart disease and stroke. You don't have to add salt to food to be eating too much, as 75 per cent of the salt we eat is already in everyday foods such as bread, breakfast cereals and ready meals.
A few simple steps can help you to cut your salt intake. By making your own soup – as you decide what’s in it – can help reduce the amount of salt in your diet. If you do use stock – choose reduced salt/sodium stock. Add herbs, spices, lemon juice or black pepper to season your soup instead of salt.A food is:
• high in salt: if it contains 1.5g/100g food
• high in sodium if it contains 0.6g/100g food.A food is:
• low in salt if it contains: 120mg/100g of food
• low in sodium if it contains: 0.3g /100g food.
How many serves of vegetables do we need a day? (And what constitutes a serve?)
All Australian adults should have five serves of vegetables a day; one serve is half a cup of cooked vegies. Fresh, frozen, dried, juiced and tinned veg all count towards your five-a-day.
Is there much of a difference between raw and cooked veg in terms of nutrition?
The main purpose of cooking vegetables is to soften the cellular tissue and to gelatinise any starch that may be present so that they can be digested more easily.
Cooking vegetables usually results in the loss of some nutrients, particularly vitamins such as C and B, the greatest loss being at very high temperatures, over a long period of time or if an excessive amount of liquid is used to cook the vegies. The losses of soluble vitamins are reduced if the cooking water is used in soups or gravies for example. The loss of nutrients as a result of cooking is usually not of major significance if you have a good mixed diet.
GALLERY: 10 health myths busted
Which vegetables are great for fighting colds in winter?No one vegetable (or fruit) on its own will provide protection from colds in winter. It’s a healthy balanced diet over all that can help to keep us well during the winter cold and flu season. All vegetables (and fruits) are low in fat, salt and sugar and are a good source of dietary fibre. They contain essential vitamins and minerals necessary for a healthy immune system. As part of a well-balanced, regular diet and a healthy active lifestyle, a high intake of fruit and vegetables can help:
• Reduce obesity and maintain a healthy weight
• Lower your cholesterol
• Lower your blood pressure.
Vegetables and fruit contain phytochemicals, or ‘plant chemicals’. These biologically active substances can help to protect you from some diseases. Scientific research shows that if you regularly eat lots of fruit and vegetables, you have a lower risk of:• Type 2 diabetes
• Heart (cardiovascular) disease – when fruits and vegetables are eaten as food, not taken as supplements
• Cancer – some forms of cancer, later in life
• High blood pressure (hypertension)
• Important for bone health
Different fruits and vegetables contain different nutrients. As I mentioned, the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) guidelines recommend that adults eat at least five kinds of vegetable and two kinds of fruit every day. Results from a national nutrition survey conducted by the Australian Government indicate that Australians of all ages do not eat enough vegetables and fruit.Related: Sarah Wilson quits sugar
How much fibre do we need each day, and how much on average are Australians consuming?
On average, women need about 25g of fibre per day (pregnant women should have 30g a day) and men need 30g a day. Similarly, older Australians should be having 30g per day. Arguably, most Australian adults aren’t getting enough – only around 19 to 24g per day.
Which soup ingredients are high in fibre?
All Vegetables (and fruits) are low in fat, salt and sugar and are a good source of dietary fibre. Adding lentils, beans peas and pulses to your soups not only increases their protein content, it also adds much needed fibre, especially soluble fibre, to the diet.
Does sugar pose a significant health problem to Australians in the way that salt does?
No it doesn’t – too much salt in the diet can cause an increase in blood pressure. Sugar does not have this effect.
As part of a healthy balanced diet you should eat foods and drinks high in sugars in small amounts and not very frequently. Sugary foods and drinks can cause tooth decay, especially if you have them between meals. Many foods that contain added sugars also contain lots of calories, but often have few other nutrients. Eating these foods often can contribute to you becoming overweight. Being overweight can increase your risk of developing conditions such as heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
Try these healthy soup recipes:Cream of red lentil with curry
Chicken Tom Yam
To find out more about the Tefal Soup and Co soup maker, visit the Tefal website.
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