What’s so fancy about ketchup, anyway? I have faith in mustard seeds.
My dad always said, “You are who your friends are or you soon will be.” That is indeed the case with both ketchup and mustard. Though they are as much as a pair as salt and pepper, they tend to attract different “friends”. Bottom line: Ketchup is a bad influence, but mustard is a role model.
On occasion, I have no problem enjoying some good fries that I know actually came from whole potatoes from a reputable restaurant (meaning they don’t have a drive-thru there). Same thing with a good juicy burger that is hand-pattied. And when that happens, that means ketchup is involved. Other than that, I don’t eat ketchup.
Because ketchup, in most cases, is paired with unhealthy foods that are either processed or fried. For me, it’s sort of disgusting to think about what ketchup really is: tomato concentrate, vinegar, high fructose corn syrup, corn syrup, salt, “spice”, and onion powder.
Tomato concentrate is processed tomatoes. Vinegar is okay. High fructose corn syrup and corn syrup are both forms of processed sugar. The rest of the ingredients are fine.
Ketchup is candy. For a serving the size of one tablespoon, there are four grams of sugar. But honestly, when I eat ketchup, I typically have a bit more than that. For a typical serving of fries at a decent restaurant, it’s pretty easy to consume four tablespoons of ketchup with the fries alone. That’s 12 grams of sugar, (one tablespoon of sugar) the equivalent to smoking one cigarette.
So my general rule of thumb is, I stay away from foods that are enhanced by ketchup. Not only is ketchup really just candy sauce, but it attracts the wrong kinds of friends. I don’t even keep ketchup in my fridge.
Mustard on the other hand is much more legit: Vinegar, water, mustard seeds, salt, turmeric, and paprika. None of those ingredients are processed. In fact, there are actually health benefits of turmeric and paprika.
Tumeric– linked to possible benefits in arthritis, cancer, and Alzheimer’s, aids in digestion, is an anti-flammatory agent as well as an antibacterial agent
Paprika– rich in vitamin C (more than lemon juice) and high in antioxidants
Of course that doesn’t mean that I recommend eating a bottle of mustard a day in order to prevent diseases. But compared side by side to ketchup, it’s pretty obvious that mustard is actually healthy to eat, whereas I can’t truly consider ketchup to be nutritious.
Mustard easily goes well with healthy foods. People don’t put ketchup on a turkey sandwich on whole wheat bread. That would be gross. But mustard would be great.
Foods that go well with mustard- good.
Foods that go well with ketchup (or both ketchup and mustard)- watch out.
Choose this day whom you will follow, ketchup or mustard.
And one more thing… Now that you’ve read my take on ketchup, why not read my perspective on being a dad? That’s right- parenting from a dad’s point of view. I have been documenting my thoughts as a dad since the week we found out my wife was pregnant. I formally invite you now to read my “dad blog” by clicking on the link below: