“One rice-bowl size of turtle soup with meat contains approximately 150kcal, 25g of protein, 2g of total fat, 1,000mg of sodium and 5g of iron,” says Reutens. “It’s nearly as healthy as fish soup, lotus root soup and plain chicken soup,” she adds.
Healthier Than Other Meats
Turtle meat is a better alternative to other types. Explains Reutens: “Compared with poultry, beef and pork, such meat has a lower calorie content because it has less fats. It also contains significantly more protein.” However, avoid the internal organs if you have gout, as they contain a high amount of purines.
Cook A More Nutritious Version
“Turtle soup is traditionally made using chicken broth as the stock base and boiling it with the turtle meat, skin, innards and herbs for several hours,” explains Reutens. “The best way to cook it is to boil your own broth using chicken bones instead of a stock cube. This can reduce the sodium content by more than 50 per cent. After boiling the bones, skim the fat off the surface and use the remaining liquid as the stock base.
If you’re preparing it yourself, here’s how to make it even more salubrious: Do not add additional salt or soya sauce to the broth. Instead, throw in some vegetables such as carrots or cabbage for added fibre and sweetness.
Skip The Flavouring
“In some places, they may add vegetable oil to fry onions and garlic, so that will increase the fat content of the soup,” says Reutens. “They may also add soya sauce for flavouring. Going for the natural taste is best, as the chicken broth is full of flavour when combined with the turtle meat. It will also have a lower calorie and sodium content.”