Autumn Tomato And Vegetable Soup

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Whilst summer has passed us by for another year, we welcome autumn with open arms. A decapitating heat wave presenting the hottest summer we’ve had in decades has all but passed; as we move closer into the cooler months of the year. And with that comes the ability to dine on certain pleasures we’d unknowingly forgotten. Whilst summer graced us with meals to quench our thirst, the introduction of autumn allows us to experience the pleasure of simplicity, wrapped up beside the fireplace with a marvelously rich tomato and vegetable soup offering a host of healthy benefits.

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Ingredients:
1 chicken breast, roughly chopped
1 brown onion
2 potatoes
2 carrots
6 cups water
4 tbsp tomato paste
6 mushrooms
1/2 cup frozen peas
1/2 cup frozen corn
1/2 cup rice
Salt and pepper
1 tsp chilli oil

Method:

  • Boil chicken, onion, potato and carrot in the water and tomato paste in a large stewing pot
  • Remove chicken when cooked and dice
  • Once potato is cooked add rice, mushroom, frozen vegetables and season with salt, pepper and chilli oil
  • When rice is cooked, add diced chicken, turn off heat and serve with crusty bread

Remember, the key to a flavorful soup is in allowing the ingredients to cook thoroughly and combine with each other, patience is essential.

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What are the benefits?
Chicken
–  If you’re after a quality source of lean protein, consider chicken breast as a supplement to muscle growth and development. Amongst aiding muscle growth, chicken is also high in the amino acid ‘tryptophan’ which provides you with the commonly accustomed to feeling of comfort. Eating chicken will increase serotonin levels in your brain, enhance your mood and decrease stress levels. In entering senior years, chicken helps aid against bone loss, osteoporosis and arthritis.

  • Poultry helps suppress ‘homocysteine’ levels, an amino acid which causes cardiovascular disease.
  • Chicken is rich in phosphorus, a mineral which supports teeth, bones, kidney, liver and the central nervous system.
  • A metabolism-booster, chicken encourages enzyme reactions maintaining your metabolism (allowing you to lose weight) and keeping your energy levels high.

IMG_Carrots_59090950Carrots – Forget Vitamin A pills, carrots have officially been declared the crunchy powerfood. An age old benefit most of us associate carrots with is improved vision. Carrots are high in beta-carotene, this is converted to Vitamin A in the liver and transferred to the retina as rhodopsin, a pigment which assists with night vision. Carrots have shown evidence to benefit against macular degeneration (age-related eyesight decay). Studies have revealed that those who consumed carrots regularly showed 40 percent lower risk of developing macular degeneration than those who consumed little.

  • Carrots have also been linked to the prevention of lung, breast and colon cancer. Researchers have found falcarinol (a natural pesticide) and falcarindiol, both cancer fighting properties.
  • Vitamin A and antioxidants found in carrots help protect our skin from sun damage. Deficiencies lead to skin, nail and hair dryness. Vitamin A prevents wrinkling, acne, dry skin, blemishes and uneven skin tone.
  • Carrots clean your mouth and teeth! Just as a toothbrush and toothpaste remove plaque and food particles, the minerals found within carrots help prevent damage to your teeth.

Mushrooms – Of 140,000 species of known mushrooms, scientists are now familiar with just 10% of them. It’s important to buy organically or grow your own mushrooms as they will absorb what they are grown in – good or bad. Roughly 100 species of mushroom are being closely examined for their health-promoting benefits, and of those hundred 12 stand out for their ability to boost your immune system.

  • Substituting red meat for white button mushrooms can significantly enhance weight loss. Over a 12 month trial, a group ate one cup of mushrooms in place of red meat. The other group ate red meat. The first group revealed a 3.6% average of weight loss; and an ability to maintain their weight.
  • Polysaccharides, particularly alpha and beta glucan molecules are the beneficial properties aiding your immune system. Mushrooms also contain high levels of Vitamin D, D2 and D3.

Our lovely autumn tomato soup offers a whole host of weight loss, anti-aging, energy and cancer fighting benefits.

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