As we've reported extensively this week, the latest government and epidemiological data shows that this year's flu is the worst in years. When measured in hospitalizations, doctors' visits, missed school and work and even, sadly, deaths, the 2013 influenza virus has been virulent indeed.

But now, thanks to the popular food delivery site, Seamless, we have the most fun (if not the most scientifically sound) measure of all: The Chicken Noodle Soup Index. The website reports that orders for chicken noodle soup have been 35 percent higher this January than they were in January 2012. What's more, matzo ball soup orders have spiked 37 percent, Gatorade orders are up 10 percent and orange juice orders are up 19 percent this January when compared to last.

According to GrubHub, another food delivery service, the last week of December and first week of January saw at 10-15 percent spike in all soup orders. The soupiest (read: sickest) city? Atlanta, with a 20 to 30 percent rise in soup orders. Boston, meanwhile, isn't ordering more soup than normal.

So are these Internet-ordering, flu-sufferers on the right track? Actually, yes. Chicken Noodle Soup is hydrating and full of nutrients that might be hard to stomach in more solid form, like protein and electrolytes. But the temperature may also help: one study at the Common Cold Centre in the U.K. found that drinking a hot liquid (like broth) alleviated congestion better than the same liquid at room temperature.

Fever and intestinal illness -- two common flu discomforts -- can cause dehydration, so Gatorade is a great choice for rehydrating and rebalancing electrolytes, especially for kids.

Have you tried any of these foods as a remedy? What's your go-to food when you're under the weather? Tell us in the comments.

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  • Posole Rojo

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/posole_rojo/">Posole Rojo recipe from Simply Recipes</a></strong>

  • Tortellini En Brodo

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://womeneatnyc.tumblr.com/post/13907321312/a-rainy-night-calls-for-tortellini-en-brodo">Tortellini en Brodo recipe from Women Eat NYC</a></strong>

  • Chunky Root Vegetable And Barley Broth With Herbed Dumplings

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/chunky-root-vegetable-and_n_1057492.html">Chunky Root Vegetable and Barley Broth with Herbed Dumplings</a> recipe</strong>

  • Avgolemono Soup

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/avgolemono_soup/">Avgolemono Soup recipe from Simply Recipes</a></strong>

  • Garlicky Lentil Soup With Vinegar And Olive Oil

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/garlicky-lentil-soup-with_n_1057206.html">Garlicky Lentil Soup with Vinegar and Olive Oil</a> recipe</strong>

  • Crockpot Chicken Tortilla Soup

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.macheesmo.com/2011/12/crockpot-chicken-tortilla-soup/">Crockpot Tortilla Soup recipe from Macheesmo</a></strong>

  • Herbed Matzoh Ball Soup

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://runningwithtweezers.typepad.com/runningwithtweezers/2007/04/its_been_a_stre.html">Herbed Matzoh Ball Soup recipe from Running With Tweezers</a></strong>

  • Ginger Chicken Udon With Spinach And Mushrooms

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/ginger-chicken-udon-with-_n_1056850.html">Ginger Chicken Udon with Spinach and Mushrooms</a> recipe</strong>

  • Borscht

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/borscht/">Borscht recipe from Simply Recipes</a></strong>

  • Tom Kha Gai

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://shesimmers.com/2010/11/tom-kha-gai-recipe-tutorial-for.html">Tom Kha Gai recipe from She Simmers</a></strong>

  • Pasta E Fagioli

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/pasta-e-fagioli_n_1060908.html">Pasta e Fagioli</a> recipe</strong>

  • Chinese Congee (Rice Porridge Or Jook)

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://steamykitchen.com/211-turkey-congee-rice-porridge.html">Chinese Congee recipe from Steamy Kitchen</a></strong>

  • Shiitake-And-Swiss-Chard Soup With Hand-Cut Noodles

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/shiitake-and-swiss-chard-_n_1061066.html">Shiitake-and-Swiss-Chard Soup with Hand-Cut Noodles</a> recipe</strong>

  • Green Gumbo

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/green_gumbo/">Green Gumbo recipe from Simply Recipes</a></strong>

  • Shoyu Ramen

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/shoyu-ramen_n_1058680.html">Shoyu Ramen</a> recipe</strong>

  • The Heat Is On Peanut Butter Carrot Soup

    <strong>Get <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/the-heat-is-on-peanut-but_n_1061106.html">The Heat Is On Peanut Butter Carrot Soup</a> recipe</strong> We know this sounds crazy, but really do not knock it until you try it. Spicy peanut butter is a <strong>healer</strong>.

  • Tibetan Noodle Soup

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/tibetan-noodle-soup_n_1061460.html">Tibetan Noodle Soup</a> recipe</strong>

  • Ski Day Potato Soup

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.macheesmo.com/2012/02/ski-day-potato-soup/">Ski Day Potato Soup recipe from Macheesmo</a></strong>

  • Menudo

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://norecipes.com/blog/menudo/">Menudo recipe from No Recipes</a></strong> For the kind of cold that requires the big guns to be brought in.

  • Tofu And Vegetable Soup With Cellophane Noodles

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/tofu-and-vegetable-soup-w_n_1060897.html">Tofu and Vegetable Soup with Cellophane Noodles</a> recipe</strong>

  • White Bean And Escarole Soup

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/white-bean-and-escarole-s_n_1058840.html">White Bean and Escarole Soup</a> recipe</strong>

  • Tofu And Mushroom Miso Soup

    <strong>Get the <a href="http://steamykitchen.com/20575-miso-soup-recipe-tofu-mushroom.html">Tofu and Mushroom Miso Soup recipe from Steamy Kitchen</a></strong>