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Get Spicey! The Intersection of Spice and Health

Precision Orthopedics By Precision
June 1, 2021 | Sports-Related Injuries

Whenever things are beginning to get ‘real’ in the kitchen, it’s sometimes good to put down the magic wand (wooden spoon), remove the cape (apron), and take a step back to analyze exactly what’s going into your upcoming masterpiece.

Be critical!

The odd sprinkle of ‘this’ or the extra squeeze of ‘that’ could transform your meal from a healthy one into a meal that tips you over your recommended daily intakes of Calories, sugar, salt or fats. 

Ketchup, sriracha, sweet chili sauce, BBQ sauce, and soy sauce can all contain more sugar, salt, fat, or Calories than you’d like to know. For example, ketchup contains 22g of white sugar per 100g, and soy sauce contains ½ your recommended daily intake of salt in just one tablespoon!

But there is a true king of the condiments, although 97% of American households own a bottle of ketchup (1); ketchup bows to the champion condiment of America: *drum roll*……. mayonnaise

The 2-billion-dollar-per-year demand puts mayo at the top condiment pedestal, and with 721 Calories per 100g (mostly coming from the 79% fat value), it certainly dominates the realm of condiments responsible for weight gain too. 

Of course, adding a little of these condiments to your meal isn’t going to end the world, but it’s still good to be aware of what goes into them, and as a result, goes into you. Instead, opt for sugar-free ketchups, low-sodium soy sauces, and low-fat mayos as a healthier alternative (they taste pretty much the same). You can even make your own ketchups and mayos without too much trouble, check out these recipes to get started!

If you want to cover your bases entirely, why not go ‘au natural’ and use some of these 

awesome, healthy, low/no-calorie herbs, spices, and condiments to give your meal the kick it 

may need:

  • Mustard (with no added sugar)
  • Garlic
  • Chili
  • Turmeric (fresh or dried)
  • Cumin
  • Freshly squeezed lemon/lime juice
  • Tabasco
  • Flavor extracts (vanilla, peppermint, 
  • almond, etc.)
  • Oregano
  • Thyme
  • Rosemary
  • Bay Leaves
  • Sage
  • Ginger (fresh or dried)
  • Cajun seasoning
  • Dill
  • Basil
  • Parsley
  • Coriander
  • Lemongrass
  • Cinnamon
  • Pepper
  • Saffron