What Are The Healthy Condiments?
I am often asked: ” What are the healthy condiments that I should pick?”
What Is Your Definition Of Healthy?
Before you can decide which are the healthy condiments, you need to define healthy. Everyone has a different definition of healthy so what is your definition of healthy?
- Are you diabetic?
- Looking for low fat?
- Want to eat chemical free?
- Is gluten free important?
So only you can really define what healthy is for you!
Find Healthy Condiments
After defining healthy for you, the next step to finding healthy condiments is to look at the ingredient list of the condiments you pick. Be aware that the quality, health benefits and ingredients change brand for brand.
These Are Healthy Condiments
In the world of condiments there are hundreds.
Here is a run down of some and how they stack up in the world of heatlhy:
Ketchup is the most widely consumed condiment in the US. It is relatively low calorie. Cooked tomatoes are nutrient-dense and provide the anti-aging licopene.
All ketchup has sugar in it. Just make sure it is not one of the first ingredients and NO high fructose corn syrup.
I am a big ketchup fan! I like Organicville as it is sweetened with agave nectar and is the 3rd ingredient.
- Prepared Mustard:
Mustard is probably one of the healthiest of all condiments, no matter what your definition of healthy is. Low calorie, low fat, low carb, lactose free, gluten free (in most cases)) prepared mustards are flavor-intense.
Mustard can be used to add flavor to almost any dish including dressings, sandwiches and meats and without adding many calories. Watch your ingredient list for chemicals but in most cases there are no worries.
Mayonnaise is by very definition high in fat. The ingredients are eggs, vinegar, spices and oil. When you make mayonnaise from scratch, no sugar is added.
Unfortunately most commercial (original recipe) mayonnaise now have sugars added. When mayonnaise is made with less fat it is higher in sugar and/or chemicals. Sugar free mayonnaise is high in chemicals. I recommend regular mayonnaise in moderation.
- Vinegar is a great condiment:
Used alone or mixed with a bit of olive oil and herbs or spice blend, it is a great condiment to put on sandwiches or enhance any dish. Vinegar is basically fat, sugar and calorie free and gives any dish a flavor pop!
- Steak Sauces (aka A-1 Sauce) :
These sauces are normally brown or orange in color and often made from tomatoes, spices, vinegar, and raisins and sometimes anchovies.
They are basically good ingredients. It usually has added sugars.
- Worcestershire Sauce:
The original recipe of this steak sauce is closely guarded, but consists of anchovies and tamarind (an exotic tropical fruit) paste in molasses with garlic, vinegar, chilies, cloves, shallots, and sugar.
Not a bad condiment.
- Salsa and Chili Sauces:
These sauces tend to be low calorie, fat and sugar by definition. The high concentration of hot pepper causes your body to burn more calories when consuming them, making them a good condiment for dieters.
Watch for hidden sugars. Salsa and chili sauces do not have to have added sugar.
- Barbecue Sauce:
It is difficult to find good quality prepared barbecue sauce.
If you want to use barbecue sauce, make your own, as most store-bought barbecue sauces have plenty of high fructose corn syrup.
- Sour Cream:
Fat free dairy products usually have few chemical additives, so the fat free are a good choice for those looking to lose weight.
I go for the low fat. It has better flavor than fat free and fewer calories than full fat.
- Soy Sauce:
Lite soy sauce is lite in sodium compared to the “regular” soy sauce.
Soy sauce is ALWAYS high in sodium and salt. So it is not a good choice for someone looking to reduce their sodium intake or someone with hypertension. If your healthy goal is low sugar or calories, then it is considered a good choice.
Pick The Ideal Condiment
Yogurt is the ideal condiment to pick when looking for a healthy choice to replace high calorie condiments.
Yogurt is a probotic, meaning that it provides all the good bacteria your digestive system needs. It is one or the top superfoods. Plain yogurt is a food that would be included daily in a healthy diet.
It can be used in place of butter, mayonnaise or sour cream in many dishes:
- With tacos instead of sour cream
- In a salad (potato salads, Waldorf salad, etc.) instead of mayonnaise
- On baked potatoes instead of butter and/or sour cream
- On muffins instead of butter
- With chips and salsa instead of sour cream
- As a base for creamy vinaigrette salad dressings
- A topping/garnish on soup
- It can even be stirred carefully (at the last minute) into a creamy soup recipe to create a “cream” soup without the calories
What Are Healthy Condiments For My Diet?
When you ask “what are the healthy condiments?” the only way to determine that is to:
- Define what healthy is for you.
- Pick products that meet those healthy goals.
- Read the ingredient list of all brands to provide the healthiest choice.