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Is canned soup healthy or is that disappointing?

  1. Nothing easier than opening a can of soup quickly on a hectic day. Just heat up and you're done! And soup is quite healthy, right? After all, there are vegetables in it?

  1. Canned soup has a relatively good reputation, especially for a ready-to-eat product. Unfortunately - as with so many 'healthy' products - that is not always entirely correct! In this blog we explain why canned soup is not always healthy, and what you should pay attention to if you still want to keep a few cans in stock.

A little too salty

  1. Many Dutch people consume far too much salt. Sodium in itself is not bad for you, but more than 1.5 grams per day increases blood pressure considerably. This is particularly unhealthy because it puts too much strain on your heart and kidneys, which can lead to health problems in the long run.

  1. 1.5 grams of sodium equals approximately 6 grams of salt. Many people go well beyond that! Ready-made products in particular often make a significant contribution. This is also the case with canned soup: some brands are so salty that you can get half of your daily recommended intake with just one serving.

  1. If you make your own soup, all that salt is easier to avoid. You can use one less stock cube and add an extra handful of herbs instead to keep the flavor up. However, with ready-to-eat soup you cannot control this yourself!

E numbers in ready-to-eat soup

  1. E numbers are additives in your food that have been officially approved by the European Union. In principle there is nothing wrong with that: in fact, the idea is that you can trust that substances on the e-number list are not bad for you.

  1. Yet there is a lot of resistance to these additives. There are a few e-numbers where it is suspected that they can have disadvantages for health. One of these is MSG, or E621, to which some people seem to react worse than others. Unfortunately, this flavor enhancer is regularly found in ready-to-eat products, and therefore also in canned soup.

  1. To be clear: most e-numbers are easy additions to give dishes a better taste, structure or shelf life. So you don't have to panic with every E on the package. But if you know that you are sensitive to certain e-numbers, canned soup is often a less good choice.


  1. Canned soup is a savory product. So what's sugar got to do with it? What many people do not realize is that sugar is often added to savory ready-to-eat products. This enhances the taste and masks the enormous amount of salt a bit ...

  1. Sugar can be difficult to identify because it can be labeled under many other names. Be on the lookout for names like sucrose, fructose, malted barley, dextrose, maltose, maltodextrin, and anything that ends in -ose. Syrups and juices are also just sugars in disguise.

  1. The higher something is on the ingredient list, the higher the percentage in the product. By adding different types of sugars that share is shredded. So read it carefully!

Also look at the packaging

  1. To determine whether canned soup is healthy, not only the contents of the can are relevant. The packaging can also play a role. Some cans are lined on the inside with a material that contains the substance Bisphenol A. Bisphenol A, more commonly known as BPA, is an agent that has negative effects on health. Too much BPA is harmful to the kidneys, liver, fertility and would have a disruptive effect on the hormone system.

  1. Eating canned soup can get you in small amounts of BPA. In some countries packaging materials with BPA are therefore prohibited, but not in the Netherlands. However, more and more brands are now opting for soup from a bag instead of a can. That makes a difference in the BPA!

Make your own fresh soup

  1. Of course, eating canned soup every now and then is not immediately unhealthy. It is still more nutritious than chips or a pizza margarita. On the other hand, it's better not to do it too often - and luckily, you don't have to! Fresh soup is just about as easy, and a lot healthier.

  1. On average, you have a pan of soup on the table within fifteen minutes. Cut some vegetables into pieces, add herbs and possibly legumes, cook and puree for a while, and you're done. Perfect for using up leftover vegetables. If you want to make it even easier for yourself, boil a large pan of soup in one go and freeze it in batches. Always an easy meal ready!

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