Cabbage soup is probably one of the most popular diet foods of the 21st century. In fact, in some version or another, the cabbage soup diet has been making the rounds since at least the 1950s. Google has indexed over 2 million web pages detailing how to prepare cabbage soup for weight loss.
Will eating soup help you lose weight? Yes, there is actual scientific evidence that eating a low calorie soup before meals can help you lose weight. But should you follow one of those restrictive cabbage soup diets published with the recipes? Probably not.
Cabbage Soup Diet: Weight Loss Reviews
There are dozens upon dozens of versions of the cabbage soup diet. Some of these claim you can lose from 10-17 pounds (4.5 to 7.7 kg) in a single week. I’ve read claims that some dieters have stayed on the diet for several months, losing up to 40 pounds in that time.
Dr. Axe, on the other hand, recommends the cabbage soup diet as a sort of detoxification therapy. He recommends trying the diet for just 3 days at first, and tells dieters not to continue for more than 10 days at a stretch. According to Dr. Axe, a cabbage soup diet can help you jump-start a liver cleanse that will rid your body of environmental toxins and help reduce inflammation associated with weight gain and illness.
The Mayo Clinic Weighs In on the Cabbage Soup Diet
The cabbage soup diet is sometimes called the “Mayo Clinic cabbage soup diet,” although the health authority neither endorses nor recommends the weight loss plan. The clinic’s Katherine Zeratsky advises caution if you choose this kind of rapid weight loss. The cabbage soup diet, she says, is very low in complex carbohydrates and protein, and supplies lower than normal levels of vitamins and minerals. The standard cabbage soup diet only provides about 1,000 calories per day. The average woman needs almost twice that amount, or 1,800 calories a day. (For a man, that amount is higher.)
A restrictive diet like this one can leave you feeling weak. Also, since most of the weight lost is due to water, you’re likely to gain much of it back as soon as you start eating normally again. You may also lose lean muscle mass in the deal, which is not a desirable outcome. And even though plant-based diets are usually very healthy, the vegetarian cabbage soup diet versions I’ve seen follow the same restrictive patterns as the standard diet. They just replace the beef or chicken on day 5 with tofu or other meat substitutes.
All in all, I’d say ditch the cabbage soup diet. But don’t ditch the soup!
Cabbage Soup is Perfect for Winter
If you’ve been reading 24 Carrot Diet for a while, you already know I love soup. I make a lot of main dish soups with meat or beans in them, but since I wanted to try eating soup before meals as a healthy lifestyle change, I am keen to make a few vegetable soups as well. Cabbage is one of my favourite vegetables to eat during the winter, so I thought I’d start with a cabbage soup.
Cabbage is a great keeper. It will last about two months in your fridge if you store it right. You can harvest cabbage from your garden or buy it at the farmers market it late fall, and it will still be good into the winter months. Cabbage is also available at your grocery store year round. And it tends to be affordably priced, too. The same applies to carrots, onions, and other root vegetables.
Cooking with these longer keepers means that even in Canada, you can still be eating seasonal foods right through the winter. And if you are a gardener who has a lot of vegetables handy at harvest time, the good news is that hardier vegetables like cabbage freeze well too.
When making cabbage soup, I recommend you prep the vegetables for two or more batches of soup at once. Pop the cut vegetables into a labelled freezer bag and tuck them away for the next time you want to make cabbage soup. Then you simply have to add the canned tomatoes and the broth. The vegetables will last several months in your freezer, so you can be eating this soup until the spring vegetables start coming in!
Crockpot Cabbage Soup Recipe
6 cups cabbage, cut into small pieces
3 cups onions, minced
2 cups diced carrots
2 medium bell peppers, diced
1 cup diced celery
3 cloves garlic
1 can diced tomatoes
8 cups water
8 tsp Better Than Bouillon Reduced Sodium Vegetable Base
1 tsp each dried basil and dried rosemary
1/2 tsp fennel seed
salt & pepper to taste
This cabbage soup recipe is so easy! Just put all the ingredients into your crockpot and cook on low for 8-10 hours or high for 4-5 hours. This recipe makes a very generous amount of cabbage soup, which you can divide into individual portions and freeze. You will have at least 12-14 healthy portions, depending how big a bowl of soup you like. If you are making your soup as part of a weight loss program, you may prefer to keep the soup warm in your slow cooker throughout the day so you can eat a bowl whenever you get hungry.
Although this is a very low calorie soup, cabbage soup calories do still count! At 12 portions, this cabbage soup provides roughly 70 calories per portion. This makes it a perfect first course for any meal. If you eat your soup about 15 minutes before the meal, you will feel more satisfied. This can help you to slow down and eat at a more leisurely pace, so you won’t overeat. Studies show that eating soup before a meal can reduce your overall caloric intake for that meal. So dig in before lunch and supper!
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HEALTHY LIVING HELP: EATING LOW-CALORIE SOUP FOR WEIGHT LOSS
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Original content © 2018 Kyla Matton Osborne, aka #RubyWriter
Public domain images by Pixabay users [users]
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