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Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Comfort Foods During Illness

Most of us unfortunately experience the “under the weather doldrums” of the nasty cold or flu every year. Depending on the severity, we may even be sidelined from work or school sitting on the couch with the feet propped up for a day or so. Appetite is usually not usually a big hitter during such illness, but we grab something anyway to keep our strength up. I have put together a list of the top comfort foods to consume when plagued by the cold or flu.
1.Chicken Soup – Was there any doubt this would make the list? Whether you crave chicken soup or simply just go through the motions of eating it when you’re sick, this food has some mystical healing powers that most doctors cannot seem to understand. We always keep a couple of cans on standby just in case one of the family members gets blindsided by a severe cold. I personally like the chicken noodle soup prepared by Chinese carryout restaurants. Their chicken broth is usually homemade and the noodles are often substituted by won tons.
2.Jell-O – I know a lot of people that hate jello. They think it is a silly item that should hardly be considered food. Nonsense. I have this one on the list for nostalgic reasons. Many cold and flu seasons plague people with sore throats. Jell-O to the rescue. I even like the premade jello tub with the chunks of fruit immersed in the jello/whipped cream mixture. The more color variety, the happier the Jell-o!
3.Homemade Cookies – No medicinal qualities whatsoever. Though who doesn’t get cheered up by a Nestle Tollhouse cookie? If you can get someone to make them while you are sidelined, even better.
4.Scrambled Eggs and Toast – This one covers the sore throat and perhaps queasy stomach conditions. I remember as a kid when my parents would prepare scrambles for us when we fought the flu. Nice thing about this meal is that the ingredients are almost always on hand in case the illness strikes.
5.Ice Cream – Sherbet – Another soother of the sore throat or high fever. It’s tough not to overlook a few scoops of orange sherbet or is it (SURE BERT)? Orange push-ups also qualify.

I have other comfort foods that make absolutely no sense to most people but provide satisfaction to me when under the weather. Those foods include kolacky, pop tarts, and ginger ale. Most items on this list seem to share the common denominator of sugar. Go figure.

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