Cabbage soup is a traditional staple in Eastern European cuisines. Although it has long been thought of as a subsistence food, it actually offers a range of benefits in addition to its low cost. Cabbage is an extremely healthy food, and there are many available cabbage soup recipes available that are extremely low in calories, but fill you up enough to deter you from eating higher calorie foods.
There's a good reason why Russian peasants ate so much cabbage soup: it's extremely inexpensive to prepare, and it makes you feel full. For this reason it's a great food to eat if you're on a budget, although you can certainly splurge a little and spice it up with some tasty, interesting ingredients that weren't available during the long, cold 19th-century Russian winters. A dash of hot sauce can go a long way to spicing up your cabbage soup. Add some curry paste or curry powder to give it an East Indian feel, or you can make an inexpensive soup based on cabbage and lentils, which has the added advantage of inexpensive protein.
Eating cabbage soup can also offer a range of health benefits. Cabbage is packed with nutrients. One cup of cabbage has nearly an entire day's recommended daily allowance of vitamin K, and half the amount of vitamin C you need each day. It also has plenty of fiber and B vitamins. As a vegetable in the cruciferous family, it contains plenty of phytonutrients, or beneficial plant chemicals that are useful for everything from cleansing our system of toxins to lowering our risks for a variety of cancers. In addition, cabbage can contribute to gastrointestinal health, and can be beneficial for a range of women's health issues.
Weight Loss Benefits
Cabbage soup is a great weight loss food, in fact, some dieters choose to follow a regimen based almost entirely of cabbage soup, at least for a limited period of time. Almost any kind of soup is good for dieting because it contains so much water, which fills you up without adding to your daily calorie count. Cabbage soup, in particular, uses for its main ingredient this low calorie, staple food that is packed with nutrients. To make a low calorie cabbage soup, boil stock or water and add cabbage, onion, garlic, seasoning, and any other vegetables you have on hand. Cook for at least half an hour, until the vegetables are as soft as you like them.