We seem to be on a bit of a roll talking about how spices and condiments can aid blood pressure. It’s incredible to think of how much a small thing can make such a significant difference. Today we’re celebrating a staple of summer cookouts. The first Saturday in August is National Mustard Day. While you might not think about mustard much as you add it into sauces, dishes or use it to top off a sandwich, the mustard seed packs a healthful punch that can help you in many ways.
National Mustard Day was invented by the Mustard Museum in Middleton, Wisconsin. But, you don’t have to travel all the way there to celebrate. You could observe the holiday at home but trying a variety of mustards. It comes in many colors, depending on the plant, and they all have distinct flavors! If you aren’t in the mood for a taste test, a cookout is another excellent way to mark the occasion.
Mustard seed is a great source of magnesium, selenium and vitamin E. Vitamin E is a potent antioxidant that can fight free radicals while magnesium and selenium both support heart health and lower inflammation. Mustard also contains potassium which is needed for normal cell function and can help keep blood pressure stable.
Additionally, mustard seeds are filled with omega-3 fatty acids that boost heart health and help lower hypertension. A tablespoon of mustard oil has almost nine grams of monounsaturated fat, which may lower both cholesterol and blood pressure.
Mustard itself is very low in salt. However, once processed into what’s in a bottle, it’s essential to read the label. You don’t know how much salt has been added to the finished product. Deli mustards are delicious but can have both salt and sugar added, so be sure to check.
While you might just think of mustard as being something that hangs out in your fridge until burger night, it is actually a pretty healthy food. As a spice, it’s fantastic and, as long as you pick the right brand, as a condiment, it’s pretty great! This is definitely a holiday worth celebrating. And, if it’s too hot in your area for a cookout, remember that mustard is an integral part of our team member’s personal favorite vinaigrette.
2 ounces extra virgin olive oil (a flavorful one meant for dipping)
2 ounces water (substituted for two additional ounces of oil)
2 ounces balsamic vinegar
1 clove crushed garlic
1 teaspoon Truvia (substituted for sugar)
1 tablespoon wholegrain mustard
Salt and pepper to taste
Nutritional info: two tbsp serving: 34 calories, 3.8 grams fat, 0.5 grams carbs
She swears by it and keeps a jar of it in her fridge at all times! So if it’s too hot for grilling, make yourself a tasty salad instead!