Is There Anything Wrong With Ketchup?

December 15, 2012

Ketchup has to be the most popular condiment in America. Can you picture french fries, a burger or even a hot-dog without ketchup? Probably not. What about grilled or fried meats? So much better if paired with this sweet and tangy sauce, made with tomatoes, vinegar, sugar, salt, and spices.
Ketchup is also often used as a basis for other sauces such as barbecue sauce. Which we all love.
Given its widespread use, you may well ask: is ketchup good or bad for us?

The good about ketchup

The primary ingredient in ketchup is tomato.
Tomatoes are rich in the powerful antioxidant lycopene. Lycopene is reputed to be a scavenger in removing the damaging effects of free radicals on our cell tissues. It’s also touted to have anti aging benefits.

The bad about ketchup

Besides tomatoes, ketchup is also packed with sugar and sodium. Most brands go a step further and pump it with high fructose corn syrup.
Some say that the high sugar and salt content offset the health benefits of tomatoes.
That might be a bit of stretch as it’s not like the sugar or salt make the lycopene benefits disappear. Nonetheless,
considering that the calories and sodium content raise, one should be careful.

Not all ketchup is created equal

There’s a huge difference among ketchup brands one can purchase. According to a recent study that analysed samples of ketchup from 13 commercial sources, organic brands of ketchup have three times as much lycopene as non-organic brands.
Also, the quality of the other ingredients used (e.g., sugar, salt, vinegar and spices) differs dramatically.
This means that you should really do your research and make the right choice to get the right kind of ketchup.


If you’re eating French fries and a big burger, chances are that you might not be overly concerned with the quality of ketchup. That’s a mistake. Remember that every bit helps in getting healthier.
Including choosing the right ketchup!

The Iron You


  1. I used to love ketchup as a kid, but after I realised the huuuuge amounts of sugar and conservatives which go into most mainstream brands I avoid it now completely.... ugh

  2. I have a HUGE obsessed with ketchup, but when I realized mostly all of the favorite brands were full of high fructose corn syrup, I cut it out of my life and just dug into a nice delicious can of tomato paste... BUT ONE DAY I found Heinz Sugar Free ketchup --- Tastes exactly like the original just without sugar (it's sweetened with splenda)... I cannot wait until they have a ketchup sweetened with just Stevia but for NOW I am going to just keep on using the splenda version! I even make a VIDEO about it on my series GiGi Eats Groceries! LOL!!!

  3. I found this just by asking if Splenda is a chemical : Splenda is the trademarked name for sucralose, an artificial chlorinated sweetener that is formed when the hydroxyl groups in a sugar molecule are replaced with chlorine molecules. Sucralose is manufactured in a chemical plant in Alabama, and then a bulking agent is added to create Splenda. While the FDA has ruled that the chemical compound sucralose is not in itself toxic, there is no question that it is unnatural and is a highly-processed chemical artificial sweetener that depends on the presence of chlorine for its intense sweetness.