Discover the many health benefits of mustard. It just might become your condiment of choice.
What would a hot dog be without mustard? Yellow mustard is one of the healthier aspects of that greasy, snack bar hot dog scarfed down during an all too brief Friday afternoon lunch break. Although mustard usually takes a back seat to ketchup when it comes to popularity, it has some interesting health properties that are worth a closer look. What are the health benefits of mustard?
What is Mustard?
The tangy yellow paste most people call mustard is derived from the seeds of the mustard plant, of which there are several types. Once the seeds are ground, they’re mixed with vinegar along with other flavorings to create some of the many varieties of mustard found on grocery store shelves and in gourmet food shops. Mustards can vary in flavor from hot and tangy to sweet and mild depending upon the type of seed and the ingredients added during its preparation.
What Are the Health Benefits of Mustard?
It’s the Best Condiment for Weight Watchers
Mustard is surprisingly low in calories. One teaspoon of yellow mustard has only three calories and no fat. It has the advantage over ketchup as most varieties have no added sugar whereas ketchup can be quite high in sugar and carbs. Mustard is the condiment of choice for anyone trying to watch their weight. Its full flavor can make even the simplest recipe or food more palatable.
It Has Anti-Inflammatory Properties
Most yellow mustard as well as many other varieties has tumeric added for flavor and color. Tumeric is a source for curcumin, a compound which has strong anti-inflammatory properties. In fact, curcumin is being studied for its role in reducing the risk of cancer, particularly breast, colon, and prostate.
Because curcumin has such strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, it may reduce the joint pain and inflammation associated with rheumatoid arthritis. Some studies also show it helps to prevent Alzheimer’s disease. Curcumin is an up and coming spice in the scientific world and it’s a component found in many mustards.
Other Anti-Cancer Benefits
Mustard seeds are a member of the Brassica family of vegetables, a group that contains highly esteemed veggies such as broccoli and cabbage. These vegetables are renowned for their high quantity of glucosinolates, compounds that are believed to have strong anti-cancer properties. Broccoli may be a polarizing vegetable, but most people can still enjoy the health benefits of glucosinolates through a healthy serving of mustard.
How to Get the Health Benefits of Mustard?
Explore the many mustard varieties available at your local grocery store as well as online. Pick up a few bottles and use it in place of ketchup and mayonnaise. It’s one of the most versatile condiments around.