Four Favorite Diabetes-Friendly, Heart Healthy Condiments
Let’s face it; condiments are a great way to perk up the taste of some dishes. What would a burger or salad taste like without some type of topping? But, if you’re watching the amount of sodium, fat or calories in your diet, these tasty delicacies can be loaded.
Here are my top four picks for diabetes friendly and heart healthy condiments you may want to try:
More than 70% of people with diabetes have high blood pressure, and all foods and condiments should raise a red flag regarding sodium. Garlic, with only 4 calories, no fat and 1 miniscule milligram of sodium per clove should take front and center as your new salt. Not only is the nutrient profile of garlic great, but it also offers an added benefit of antioxidants. Garlic can be eaten raw, sautéed, grilled or roasted and used as a spread on bread or a sandwich in place of a higher fat spread like butter.
Salsa or Pico de Gallo
Salsa and pico de gallo are often associated with Mexican food dishes, but why not spoon some fresh diced tomato mixture onto your favorite burger or dollop over a salad as your dressing? Most salsa in a jar has no fat, only 4 or 5 calories, and 100 milligrams or less of sodium per tablespoon. You can also make your own salsa, or pico de gallo, which is uncooked salsa made from fresh ingredients. Using fresh ingredients can help cut the sodium.
Available year round, herbs and spices can be a great lower sodium, lower fat, lower calorie condiment for any dish. There are too many combinations of spices and herbs to list, so experiment with unique fresh or dried mixtures. For starters, try sprinkling fresh rosemary on an ear of corn before grilling. Wrap the corn in aluminum foil after sprinkling with rosemary, and you’ll find no need for any buttery spread because the oils from the rosemary coat the ear of corn with wonderful flavor.
Avocado is a fruit offering a monounsaturated (heart healthy) and a creamy texture. Two tablespoons of avocado is equivalent to one serving of healthy fat, so the calories will add up quickly. But, avocado can be a healthier fat choice than a mayonnaise or butter spreads.
The purpose of condiments is to add flavor to food, not unhealthy fat and sodium. But, even though the portions we use are usually small, condiments may be just the place you can go healthier.
What aspect of diabetes management do you struggle with most?