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WATCH YOUR KETCHUPS!

Chhavi Sethi
Chhavi Sethi
===== WATCH YOUR KETCHUPS: HOW CONDIMENTS IMPACT PROGRESS =====

Condiments are a spice, sauce or pickle that is added to the dish typically after cooking or consumed on the side to enhance the flavor of a dish. All tomato ketchup, sauces, chutneys and pickles fall in this category. Bread spreads and jams, though not exactly a condiment, also serves the same purpose – enhancing the flavor. These could also be considered ‘empty calories’ since they do nothing to fill your stomach.

Calorie content for the various condiments mentioned here can vary brand to brand. Also if you make them at home – like pickle and chutney, the calorie content can be different. You could use the numbers mentioned here only as a reference.

Since these are not main meal and are consumed in ‘supposedly’ limited quantities, most people normally ignore them and don’t count them while calculating calories consumed. For example, if you had french fries, you might think you had junk and may count calories for the fries. However, you may not give the tomato ketchup you dipped the fries in a second thought. Similarly, you may account for the dosa/idly you had, but not pay attention to the tasty coconut chutney you consumed it with.

I believe tomato ketchup is universally the most used and therefore the most ignored condiment. We can have it with almost anything and everything – samosa / fries / pizza / sandwich / poha / parantha etc. We normally have no idea of the quantity of tomato ketchup we consume. Next time, may be just for fun, use a kitchen weighing scale to measure the quantity of ketchup you have with your dishes and see the calories for yourself. In the Indian context, pickle would be the most used condiment. Every region has its own specialty. This is again something, which most people would not account for because per meal the quantity of pickle seems insignificant.

Another place where we may not realize how these condiments can impact the total calorie for the dish is in SALADS. We order salads thinking we are eating healthy and low calorie. But then we load them up various sauces (mayonnaise, ranch, habanero, thousand islands) and condiments, increasing the overall calories for the salad. And that’s how a perfectly good salad is rendered as a calorific bomb.

So again be aware, be mindful and know where your calories are coming from. These are small loopholes, which are mostly overlooked because per meal they seem insignificant, but can and will gradually add up…thus impacting the pace of your progress.