Does chicken soup really help with a cold? (ThinkStock)
Does chicken soup really help with a cold?
Lexile

You asked us, does chicken soup really help with a cold, so we went to Generic Grandma for this one, and yes, it actually looks like her chicken soup might make you feel better.

Like over-the-counter cold meds, chicken soup isn't going to cure your cold or even make it shorter, but it can probably reduce your symptoms, making you that much less miserable.

The virus that's invaded your body and made you sick isn't to blame for your stuffy nose, your cough, or other nastiness and you can actually thank your body for that.

It's busy fighting off the intruder by sending white blood cells to the front lines, and lucky us, one of the side effects of this defense structure is serious uptick in mucus.

Anyway, research suggests that chicken soup has a little something, something -- and don't ask me what, because we don't actually know yet -- that slows down mucus production and gets existing muck to run out.

At the very least, chicken soup helps keep you hydrated and it fills your belly with nutritious, yummy veggies and other good stuff, so the next time you're sick, reach for a big bowl of brothy goodness ... It just might make you feel better.

GENERIC GRANDMA: BA-BOWL!

ERIC SHULZE: Oh, thanks Grandma.

For more stories like this, check us out every day at Smithsonian.com.

No sciencey soup for you. No soup. No science.

Critical thinking challenge: What are the helpful side effects of eating chicken soup?

Assigned 17 times


COMMENTS (88)
  • wadew-And
    3/10/2015 - 04:03 p.m.

    The helpful side affects of chicken noodle soup is that it slows the mucus production and helps the existing muck to run out to make you feel better.

  • 1elis
    3/10/2015 - 06:30 p.m.

    I am going to be sharing and explaining my opinion of the article. I agree with the article. I think that chicken noodle soup somehow can help cure a cold in some way. I myself have had chicken noodle soup when I had a cold and it did help in some way. To add to that, research has been done showing that chicken noodle soup slows mucus production and gets existing muck to run out. All in all, I believe that chicken noodle soup somehow can help with a cold and make you feel a bit better.

  • austinrg-DiB
    3/10/2015 - 08:25 p.m.

    it reduces the symptoms of the sickness by keeping you hydrated and filling your stomach up with some of the nutrients from the soup to help you out. it also has something that the researchers do not know of that slow the mucus production and gets the muck out.

  • John0724-YYCA
    3/10/2015 - 10:00 p.m.

    Well I knew that the chicken soup helps you with the cold in a different way for helping them get cured because when I read this article I saw that the Smithsonian guy said that these cur the symptoms and you can get more energy. Today I am really glad that I read the article because when I am not feeling well I could eat chicken soup.

  • gerquincy
    3/11/2015 - 08:41 a.m.

    There is something about chicken noodle soup that makes you feel better. My mom has been giving it to me since I was a little kid.

  • MaxM-Ver
    3/11/2015 - 10:48 a.m.

    chicken soup always helped me git better. I wider wat is in the soup for it too help.
    M m m m m m m

  • JaelA-Phe
    3/11/2015 - 11:39 a.m.

    What I read was that Chicken soup can slow down the mucus. It wont clear out or wipe out the detrimental cold. But at least it will slow it down. It worked when I had the cold. Based on what I read, I believe its true. I mean having a cold is a pandemonium of an uproar.

  • brianp-Che
    3/11/2015 - 11:48 a.m.

    i eat chicken soup when i get a cold, the only difference is that my grandma doesn't make it. i eat the one that's canned.

  • 3ClaireS
    3/11/2015 - 12:47 p.m.

    I think it is really cool that chicken soup actually does help with a cold. Even though it doesn't totally stop it, it can stop a runny nose. Scientists still don't know exactly what it is that helps with a cold, but something does make you feel better. It may not be in all chicken soups, but they found it in Generic Grandma soup. Your body is sending white blood cells that are fighting the virus, and the side effect of that is feeling terrible. So in the end, chicken soup does not cure a cold, just makes you feel much better when you have one.

  • 8melaniec
    3/11/2015 - 12:55 p.m.

    The helpful side affects of eating chicken noodle soup are evident. The chicken soup does not actually heal your cold. The broth chicken and vegetables just puts good protein and vitamins into your body. The protein in the chicken and the vitamins in the vegetables can help your body fight off the cold symptoms it may be experiencing. Overall chicken soup may not cure your cold put it will put your body on the track to getting over it.

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