Ketchup versus Mustard - Which is healthier?
Antioxidants in Ketchup and Mustard
First off, despite some people spelling it "catsup", I'm going to spell it "ketchup" because that is how Heinz (famous for its ketchup) spells it.
So which is healthier? Ketchup or mustard.
Upon first cursory thought, one would think ketchup is healthier. Afterall, there is so much media attention on the fact that it contain lycopene, which is the antioxidant in tomatoes that helps fight oxidation damage by mopping up harmful free radicals.
However, less widely known is that mustard contain the health-promoting turmeric, which is the spice that give curry its yellow color. It too is an antioxidant.
Seem like the duel between ketchup and mustard ends in a draw on this one. They both have anti-oxidative properties.
What's in the labels of ketchup and mustard?
Next, we have to look at the ingredient labels. While it is true that some brands are better than others and have better and more healthful ingredients and less of the deleterious ingredients, we will have to do some generalization.
One notable ingredient that we do not want to see on our label would be high fructose corn syrup. It appears that ketchup is more likely of having this in its ingredient label than mustard. Although, now-a-days, as more people become aware of the harmful health effects of high fructose corn syrup, more and more manufacturers are pulling this ingredient out. But read your food labels anyways.
The reason we don't want high fructose corn syrup is that it contributes to our sugar load. And it is non-natural sugar made from most likely genetically modified corn. See my other article on why sugar is so bad.
What about sugar load?
Looking further at the food label, let's look at the sugar content. It appears that ketchup has more sugar that mustard. That makes sense. I've never known mustard to taste sweet -- at least the tradition kind, not the honey mustard sweetened kind.
So mustard comes out ahead in terms of lower sugar. On the French's Mustard website, it shows the ingredient comparison between mustard and ketchup.
Tomatoes are Nightshades
Ketchup are made from tomatoes. Tomatoes are classified as a nightshade vegetable. Nightshades contain alkaloids that some people may find inflammatory and irritating to the gut. While most people should not have any problems with the small amount of alkaloids in tomatoes and can tolerate nightshades just fine, people with autoimmune diseases may be more sensitive to nightshades. This is why the autoimmune protocol proposed by Sarah Ballantyne avoids nightshades.
Another strike against ketchup here.
Mustard are Antimicrobial
Mustard has the properties that it acts as an antimicrobial. That means that it helps fight off microbes.
HealthNews writes ...
Mustard seeds have antiseptic as well as anti-fungal properties. This makes them very useful for purging the digestive system and increasing the body's natural [defense] system.
Another plus for mustard here. Furthermore, LiveStrong.com writes of some healthful minerals found in mustard such as potassium, magnesium, calcium, and phosphorus.
So tallying all the pluses and minus of both ketchup and mustard, we find that mustard mustard is slightly healthier than ketchup.
Dr. Ron Rosedale seem to think that mustard is healthier too. Because in his Nutritional Recommendations on his site, he says that most condiments and spices are good and he list several including mustard. But he writes "NO KETCHUP" in all caps.
So next time you order a hamburger, just say "hold the ketchup and extra mustard please".
But don't take this too seriously. This is just this one author's opinion as a fun exercise. You can continue to put ketchup and mustard on your hamburger if you like. But seriously, skip the bun. See why bread is not good for you.