Sunday, June 29, 2008

Mustard, Chili, and Weight Loss

It's a surprisingly frequent question, "Is there a relationship between mustard and weight loss? And what about chili peppers, too?"

The benefit of mustard for dieters is very straightforward. A tablespoon (14 g) of mayonnaise--and most of us prefer two tablespoons or more on our sandwiches--contains 99 calories (kcal)and 11 g of fat. Because we go for both the "feel" as well as the taste of mayonnaise, we tend to eat more.

A teaspoon of mustard--which is enough to give a zingy taste to sandwich if you spread it thinly--comes in at just 3 calories and zero grams of fat. Switching from mayo mustard can easily save you 200 calories or more for every sandwich. And chilies are just as low-calorie with an additional benefit.

An Australian clinical study finds that eating an ounce of chopped chili peppers every day can protect cholesterol from forming atherosclerotic plaques, and the benefit is measurable in as little as a month.

Drs. K. D. Ahuja and M. J. Ball of the University of Tasmania (Australia) found that a "freshly chopped chili" condiment eaten every day slowed the oxidation of cholesterol even more effectively than taking vitamin E and antioxidant supplements. The same researchers, along with Drs. I. K. Robertson and D. P. Geraghty, also found that eating chilies for a month lowered resting heart rate in men.

So spice up your diet and lose a few more ounces every week. Mustard and chili peppers can add taste to simple meals and help you lose fat, lose weight, and protect your heart all at the same time.

Author or co-author of nine books on natural healing, Robert Rister is currently blogging on remission from pancreatic cancer.


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