Condiments can make bland foods taste better and good foods taste great. You can never think fries or a hot dog without ketchup or mustard, right? They are usually given a free ride because, well, it’s only a spoonful. They’re typically overlooked, or brushed off as “harmless,” or eaten in such small quantities that their effects seem negligible. But like they have some harms for your body, they have many benefits as well. So do you want to take a look at the facts about them
Ketchup goes with just almost everything—French fries, eggs, hash browns, burgers, deli meats… It is a low-calorie condiment, made from tomatoes, vinegar, salt, pepper, and spices. It contains 15 calories per tablespoon and vitamins A and C. Do you know that, back in the ’80s, the Reagan administration proposed counting ketchup as a vegetable in school lunches. This idea, of course, didn’t survive long!
The good thing about ketchup is that it is much lower in calories than some other condiments, such as mayonnaise. It also contains far less fat than mayo and it does provide some lycopene, an antioxidant that helps prevent multiple health problems. Unfortunately, the bad far outweighs the good. Although ketchup has the 5 simple ingredients listed above, food companies have devirginized its ingredient list by adding stuff like high fructose corn syrup, natural flavoring, and tomato concentrate. High fructose corn syrup is extremely unhealthy and toxic. It is produced from corn that has been genetically modified. While a single tablespoon of ketchup may not be too bad, piling on the ketchup could easily result in overloading on sodium. A tablespoon-size serving has four grams of sugar, which is more sugar than a typical chocolate chip cookie. But how many of you actually limit the serving size to one tablespoon?
The taste is not the only quality that mustard possesses. It is a multitalented botanical with different varieties. But white mustard, black mustard, and brown mustard have gained more popularity over the others. They are a rich source of minerals such as calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, and potassium. Along with this, it is a good source of dietary folate and vitamin-A as well. Mustard greens or leaves have a very good amount of vitamin A, which may help in promoting eye health and contains fiber which enhances digestion. It is an energizing vegetal, which is effective in relieving stiff muscles, aching joints, congested phlegm, tumors, and pneumonia.
Be careful, not to consume too much of it; yellow mustard is also high in sodium, which can increase your risk of heart disease if consumed in excess. However, the yellow mustard sauce that you put on your hot dog is a low-calorie food. Unlike the other additives like Mayo or Ketchup, these sauces are low in sugar, or unhealthy fats, and possess several health benefits.
Ketchup or Mustard?
They do both good and harm to your body. So just avoid consuming excessive amounts and sauces with high preservatives or high sodium content. When shopping for the healthiest and most nutritious options, choose brands with the shortest/simplest and most recognizable ingredients lists with no artificial colors, sweeteners or preservatives. When you know the limits of your body, you are always good!