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Wiser Living

Finding a natural solution

Food Wise: Soup and Sandwich for the Flu

by Olivia Blanco Mullins

Tags: Food Wise, Flu, Food, Cold, Soup, Olivia Blanco Mullins,

Last week I tried pre-packaged organic soup, and I was surprised at how good it was. Normally I would not buy soup in a carton or a can, but I was sick all of last week with the flu and my husband brought it for me, along with ingredients to make grilled cheese sandwiches.

The soup I had was Imagine’s Organic Creamy Broccoli, which has all-natural ingredients and is made with soy milk, instead of dairy ingredients. It wasn’t as rich as the cream of broccoli soups you get at restaurants, but it was definitely creamy and had a very distinct broccoli flavor. It really was the perfect meal for a sick day.

The grilled cheese was delicious too, even though I probably shouldn’t have had it, because I find that dairy makes my body create more mucus, which is what I’ve always believed even though I know there is research about this not being true. Nonetheless, having all of the ingredients at home made the dairy impossible to resist.  

To make the sandwich, I used whole wheat rustic bread and havarti cheese, which melts very nicely. I spread a little bit of butter on the outside of each slice of bread and grilled it in a small cast iron pan. It was really good and pretty much the highlight of my day—so much so that I had the same exact meal the next day.

grilled cheese

Photo by romanlily/Courtesy flickr
Mmmm, grilled cheese.

When I am sick, and this was an especially bad case, I eat very erratically. I am usually not interested in food all day, and then all of a sudden I am so hungry I can eat anything I have in the house. I also become more lenient with myself; if I hadn’t been sick I would have probably heated my sandwich in the oven, instead of in a pan with butter. I know this is not such a great idea because when you are sick you should eat healthier, to be stronger and get better, right?

My soup and sandwich were good choices…the chocolate éclair from the local bakery I had on Sunday was probably not, but it made me feel good after a full week of feeling miserable.

I think I have found my emergency food in this soup and sandwich combo. Aside from chicken soup, which is sometimes referred to as Jewish Penicillin, and seems to be everyone’s go-to meal when sick, what do you eat when you have a cold or the flu?


Olivia Blanco Mullins is a journalist and has been eating healthy most of her life, as her parents have owned health food stores for more than 20 years. Currently she lives in Manhattan, Kansas, where her husband owns an  Italian restaurant .