What Is Pho, and Is Pho Healthy?

What does pho really refer to?

In the past few years, pho, a Vietnamese soup, has become more and more popular. It usually has rice noodles, meat, herbs, and a clear broth (usually beef or chicken). The dish is often served with a side plate of fresh herbs, lime wedges, and bean sprouts, which can be added to the soup to make it taste better. But is pho good for you? Let’s look more closely.

What Pho Can Do for Your Body

If you choose the right ingredients, pho can be a healthy choice. Most of the time, the broth is low in calories and fat, and the rice noodles give you carbs. Most of the time, the meat in pho is lean, which means it provides protein without adding too much fat to the dish. But some kinds of pho may have a lot of sodium, so it’s important to look at the nutrition facts before you order.

How Pho is Good for Your Health

There are many herbs and spices in pho that are thought to be good for your health. For instance, ginger is often used in pho broth, and studies have shown that it can help reduce inflammation. Cilantro is another herb that is often used in pho. It has been linked to better digestion and lower cholesterol. Also, the collagen in the bone broth used in pho may be good for the health of your joints.

Making Pho Healthier

There are a few things you can do to make pho even better for you. First, choose a broth with less salt or ask for less salt to be put in it. You can also choose meat with less fat or replace the meat with tofu or more vegetables. Finally, be mindful of portion sizes – pho can be a filling meal, so it’s important not to overeat.

In conclusion, pho can be a healthy option if you choose the right ingredients and are mindful of portion sizes. There are many herbs and spices in the dish that are good for your health, and the broth is usually low in calories and fat. But some kinds of pho may have a lot of sodium, so it’s important to look at the nutrition facts before you order. By making a few small changes to your order, you can still eat healthy while enjoying this delicious Vietnamese soup.

The positive effects that drinking pho may have on one’s health

Although at first glance pho seems to be nothing more than a straightforward soup, the ingredients that go into making it really have the potential to give a wide range of health benefits.

Components that are beneficial to your health.

A good number of the ingredients that are used to make pho include qualities that might be helpful to a person’s health, such as the following:

Consuming bone broth can end up being beneficial to the health of your joints. The nutrients glucosamine, chondroitin, and collagen that may be found in bone broth all have the potential to benefit joint health. Bone broth is an excellent source of all three of these nutrients. On the other hand, it hardly never provides more than very minute levels of these compounds (1Trusted Source, 2Trusted Source, 3Trusted Source, 4Trusted Source).
Ginger has anti-inflammatory properties and may help reduce inflammation. Ginger contains a molecule called gingerol, which has been shown to have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant qualities and may reduce joint pain and inflammation. These benefits have been shown in laboratory studies. Animal research has shown the effectiveness of these advantages (5Trusted Source, 6Trusted Source).
The nutritious impact of herbs and vegetables may often be underestimated. The herbs and vegetables used to prepare pho, such as Thai basil, cilantro, green onions, and chili peppers, have an abundance of healthy nutrients and potent anti-inflammatory chemicals (7Trusted Source, 8Trusted Source).

A consistent amount of protein available

The vast majority of pho recipes call for one of the following proteins: beef, pig, chicken, or tofu. Because each serving of 2 cups (475 milliliters) includes around 30 grams of protein, it is an excellent source of this meal that may make you feel full (9Trusted Source).

As a result of the fact that your muscles, tendons, organs, skin, and hormones are all composed of protein, consuming an adequate amount of protein in your diet is of the utmost importance. Because it is a macronutrient, or large nutrient, protein serves as the key component in the construction of your body. In addition to that, it is required for a wide number of other procedures (10Trusted Source, 11Trusted Source).

The majority of people need more than the recommended daily allowance for protein, which is 0.4 grams of protein for every pound of body weight or 0.8 grams of protein for every kilogram of body weight. Consuming pho as part of a healthy, well-balanced diet could make it easier for you to fulfill all of your dietary needs (12Trusted Source).

Contains herbs that are rich in a variety of nutrients in high concentrations

The Vietnamese dish known as pho makes use of a number of spices and herbs, including cilantro and basil, both of which have significant polyphenol content. A decreased risk of acquiring chronic diseases such as cancer and cardiovascular disease has been linked to the use of these drugs (13Trusted Source, 14Trusted Source, 15Trusted Source).

Eating pho may assist you in taking in more of these powerful substances, which is excellent to your health despite the fact that it is hard to determine how much of each herb and spice you need to eat in order to enjoy the health benefits associated with doing so.


The dish is normally gluten-free since it is prepared using rice noodles; however, this cannot be guaranteed because it also depends on the other components and the processing that those goods experienced.

Because it does not contain any gluten, pho is a food that you should give some thought to eating if you are on a diet that prohibits the consumption of gluten.

Potential disadvantages

Even though ingesting pho might give you with certain benefits, there are still a few things you need to be wary of before you do so.

It’s possible that this food is high in salt.

The amount of sodium that is found in pho may vary greatly, especially among the variations that are properly prepared.

Soup bases and broths often include close to one thousand mg of sodium in each serving size of one cup (240 milliliters) (16Trusted Source).

An person should not take more than 2,300 milligrams (mg) of salt on a daily basis, as stated in the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, which are a joint publication of the United States Departments of Agriculture and Health and Human Services (17Trusted Source).

As a result, consuming just one serving of pho might give you with around half of the required daily amount of salt.

Some people are more likely to have negative effects on their health as a result of consuming an excessive quantity of salt, the most obvious of which is an increase in blood pressure (18Trusted Source, 19Trusted Source).

The most efficient method for lowering the quantity of sodium that is present in pho is to make the bone broth on your own from scratch or to purchase a variety that has a lower percentage of salt.

It is simple to consume an excessive amount of calories.

The kind of noodles and the quantity of meat that are used may have a significant impact on the total number of calories that are included in a single serving of pho.

To assist you in keeping your calorie consumption under control, try substituting your typical rice noodles with ones that have more fiber, such as those made from brown rice. It has been demonstrated that increasing the amount of fiber in a diet can enhance feelings of fullness, which will lead to an overall decrease in the amount of calories consumed (20Trusted Source).

Increasing the number of vegetables you consume, such as mushrooms, carrots, bean sprouts, or dark leafy greens, is one more approach to increase the amount of fiber and nutrients that you get from your diet.

To help you maintain a healthy weight and keep your waistline in check, choose a cut of beef that is lower in fat and calories, such as top round. Chicken and tofu are both excellent substitutes for beef and pig since they contain less fat and less calories than those two meats do.

By increasing the quantity of vegetables and lean proteins that are included in your pho while concurrently reducing the amount of noodles that are contained in it, your pho may assist you in feeling satisfied more quickly. This may lead to a decrease in the total amount of food that you eat.

The minimal minimum required

Pho is a popular Vietnamese soup that may be made with either meat or tofu, rice noodles, and several additional seasonings. It is often served with a lime wedge.

Because of the nutritional components that it contains as well as the high quantity of protein that it contains, it has the potential to provide a variety of benefits, including a decrease in inflammation and an improvement in the health of the joints.

However, it may have a high salt and calorie content; hence, it is vital to ensure that the right serving amount is used.

In general, adding pho to an already healthy diet may be beneficial since it contains a variety of nutrients.

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