Ketchups and mayonnaise have become inevitable elements on our dining tables now. While a homemade option could be considered slightly healthier than the store-brought or restaurant ones, the fact still remains that these condiments account for a major portion of the calorie intake. It is true that they make your food taste fabulous and lip-smacking, but did you know that you were inviting hidden dangers for your health?
Yes, you heard it right! These sauces and condiments are packed with sugar, saturated fat, and other such ingredients that could only have negative impacts on your health. While they could be a small part of your daily food intake, balancing is very important as tipping over is very easy.
What makes dipping sauces so bad?
These taste makers contain sugar, unwanted fats, and sodium in unimaginably high quantities. If you take a look at the ingredient list of your ketchup bottle, you will be shocked to find out that sugar makes up 25% of the net ingredients. They also contain ‘nature-identical’ flavor enhancers to woo your taste buds. And, you cannot forget about the high quantity of preservatives that go into these condiments to give them a longer shelf-life.
Here are some of the worrisome impacts of using dipping sauces extensively!
- Obesity Risk
These condiments could easily fall into the category of junk foods, one of the prime causes for obesity and waistlines. Wondering how? A cup of marinara or pasta sauce contains 22 grams of sugar, which contributes to 88% of the recommended daily intake of sugar. With the rate of obesity swelling up at an irrepressible pace, it is high time you take a look at the quantity of the sauces you use.
- Beware of saturated fats and trans fats
Saturated fats are acceptable to a certain level, only if they are sourced from a grass-fed animals. In other cases, it is advisable to stay away from saturated fats as well as trans fats. These types of fats are known to cause various life-threatening health conditions, including hyper obesity.
- Zero nutritional value
The store-brought dipping sauces proclaim that they contain ingredients that could boost your health. But take a step closer to reality and you will realize that they are made up of ingredients, including various additives and chemicals, that are of zero nutritional value.
- A dip in the memory and cognitive function
Certain dipping sauces like mayonnaise and ranch sauce can be high in saturated fats. And, there are numerous studies that have established the fact that saturated fats could have a negative impact on your memory and functioning of the brain.
- You will upset your digestive system
Fiber is essential to ensure that your digestive system is functioning the right way. It keeps your digestive tract health, eliminating the wastes, and preventing bloating. Unfortunately, these food groups are deprived of dietary fiber. Even worse, they contain loads and loads of sugar and sodium, two major contributors of bloating and constipation.
- Your kidney will stop functioning properly
Excessive intake of sodium is linked to an increased risk of developing kidney disease, kidney stones, and renal cancer. When the intake of this mineral exceeds the admissible limits, it contributes to a dangerous fluid retention, which in turn could impact your kidneys.
[ Read: How To Detoxify Your Kidneys Naturally ]
- Your teeth will start decaying
These dipping sauces, as mentioned previously, contain sugar in huge amounts. Hence, consuming these condiments in large amounts could increase the quantity of acid present in the mouth, eventually causing cavities and teeth decay.
- The risk of infertility
The ingredients used in preparing these sauces are not 100% natural. And, even if they are natural, they could contain various hormones and chemicals that could interfere with your fertility levels.
- Your cholesterol could skyrocket
Mayonnaise and ranch dip are two classical examples of dipping sauces that contain high fat content. Studies suggest that heavy intake of fat contributes to high cholesterol, in turn increasing the risk of atherosclerosis. What’s more.. these condiments could lower the levels of your good cholesterol, putting your heart in further danger.
- You could be at the risk of depression
While all of us love these taste enhancing food groups, we do it without knowing that they could trigger depression. These condiments are nutritionally deprived, which could actually trigger depression, irritability, and mood swings.
- Your bone health starts deteriorating
As mentioned above, these condiments are loaded with sodium. An increased sodium intake could weaken your bones, leading to osteoporosis.
- There is an increased risk of developing cancer
According to a study conducted by the National Toxicology Program of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on rats, an ingredient called 2–methylimidazole could trigger cancer. This chemical is one of the most prominent ingredients used to render the luscious caramel color to various dark-colored dipping sauces. So, beware!
Make Healthier Choices
Since these dipping sauces enhance the flavor of your food, you need not actually eliminate them from your diet. There are various healthy and tasty substitutions available that you could try. Keep in mind the following tips while making these more nutritious and healthier choices:
- Add no sugar
- Keep the net calorie per tablespoon less than 30 calories
- Restrict the carbohydrates to less than five grams
- Include health saturated fats, but aim for less than one gram per tablespoon of serving
- Aim for zero trans fat
- Keep sodium levels to less than 70 mg per tablespoon
Some of the healthier alternatives you could choose include:
- Homemade salsa, free from vinegar and other additives.
- Yellow mustard that hardly contains calories, fat, salt, and sugar
- A fresh fruit cocktail flavored with a little honey and rock salt
- Fresh basil crushed with olive oil and garlic and flavored with black pepper and Himalayan salt
- Low fat ricotta cheese dip
- Avocado butter
- Fresh grass-fed cow butter infused with herbs and free from salt
- Coconut butter flavored with herbs
The choice is yours… So make a decision now to stay healthier!