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50 Foods That Are Healthier Than You Think: #50 - Ketchup

Sunday, January 27, 2013

From pasta and cheese to mayo and beer, asked nutrition experts to share what some may consider as unhealthy foods that may actually be better for the body than we realize. Read on for the good news from

And for the last of this series, Ketchup (now this one is a surprise!)

Here’s the deal – ketchup is a healthy source of nutrition, but the sugars and sodium that sometimes come with it (especially in bottled varieties) aren’t. “Many popular brands contain over 4 grams of sugar and 160 mg of sodium per tablespoon,” Pedersen says. But if done right, ketchup can be a terrific choice, she says: it’s practically fat-free, low in calories (15 per tablespoon) and rich in two powerful antioxidant nutrients, vitamin A (fantastic for the immune system, eyesight and good skin) and lycopene (the premier heart-protecting antioxidant). To keep it on the healthy list, Pedersen recommends looking for brands that have 2 grams of sugar and 110 mg of sodium (or less) per tablespoon (she loves Sir Kensington’s Scooping Ketchup, which doesn’t contain high fructose corn syrup).

Make your own ketchup with Pedersen’s easy recipe:

In large pan, combine 1 medium onion (chopped) and 2 tablespoons of olive oil and cook until soft. Transfer the cooked onions to a saucepan, and mix in one 28-ounce can of crushed tomatoes (preferably organic), 1/4 cup agave nectar, 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar and one teaspoon of sea salt. Simmer over low heat for 1.5 to 2 hours, or until mixture thickens into ketchup consistency. Allow mixture to cool, and then pour into a high-powered blender and mix until smooth. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to four weeks.
tells us that

- The first record of the word in English was as 'catsup' in 1690; in 1711 the spelling 'ketchup' appeared, and finally in 1730 the spelling 'catsup' appeared.
- In the 18th and 19th century, ketchup was a generic term used for various sauces whose only common ingredient was vinegar.
- There is more to ketchup than just tomato ketchup. Some of the many varieties that have been popular include lobster, walnut, mushroom, cucumber, cranberry, oyster, lemon, grape, and anchovy.
Heinz sells more than 50% of the ketchup sold in the U.S.
- Unopened bottles of ketchup can be stored for 1 year on a cool, dark, dry shelf. Tightly covered opened bottles will last a month in a cool, dark, dry place.
- Richard Nixon liked ketchup on his cottage cheese.

"Blessed relief for Mother and the other women in the household!"
~ Heinz slogan when it introduced its commercial version of ketchup in 1876.


Member Comments About This Blog Post:
MARGARITTM 2/21/2013 7:16AM

    no kidding?!

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TIMOTHYNOHE 2/21/2013 12:11AM

    really? That's wild.

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NEVERGIVEUP57 2/2/2013 6:19AM

    oh wow, this is cool..maybe i'll make this in the summer...

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PATRICIAAK 1/29/2013 1:11AM

    glad you pointed out the 'down side' of commercial ketchup It's why I avoid it

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JTREMBATH 1/29/2013 12:30AM


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JEANNE229 1/28/2013 7:10PM

    Thanks...especially for the recipe!

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OURELEE1 1/28/2013 12:49PM


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GABY1948 1/28/2013 9:29AM

    Great info. I was surprised (no, shocked) that it was on your list too. But I shall look for the low sugar/salt brands myself because that is the exact reason I stay totally away from ketchup! emoticon

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NELLJONES 1/28/2013 7:34AM

    Interesting that salsa passed ketchup as the most commonly used condiment about 10 years ago.

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GLAMNGLOWDIVA 1/28/2013 12:31AM

    Yay! More ketchup!

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MILPAM3 1/28/2013 12:22AM

  Thanks for the recipe. emoticon

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_CYNDY55_ 1/28/2013 12:20AM

    emoticon for sharing!

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DEE107 1/28/2013 12:08AM

    thanks for sharing

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