The Lesser Evil: BBQ Edition

Not all BBQ fare is created equal. Nutritionist Theresa Albert helps you navigate the buffet and offers some tips on how to make better BBQ choices.

Which is the better choice: burger or sausage?

1. Coleslaw vs. Potato Salad

And the winner is...neither!

The truth is these two are so close nutritionally, it's impossible to choose. Theresa suggests reducing fat and calories by using a vinaigrette or yogourt-based dressing instead of mayonnaise.

Calories 232
Carbohydrates 26 g (Sugars 20 g)
Sodium 284 mg
Protein 2 g
Total Fat 14 g

Potato Salad
Calories 230
Carbohydrates 23 g (Sugars 9 g)
Sodium 540 mg
Protein 4 g
Total Fat 14 g

2. Hamburger vs. Sausage

And the winner is...the sausage!

Both are high in fat and calories, but sausage is easier to eat without a bun, which is important if you don't want to tip the scales. In this category, brands matter most. Make sure to read the labels and go for leaner protein options, such as turkey sausage or bison burgers.

(without bun, condiments or veg)

Calories 380
Carbohydrates 5 g (Sugars 0 g)
Sodium 600 mg
Protein 19 g
Total Fat 31 g

(without bun, condiments or veg)

Calories 250
Carbohydrates 0 g (Sugars 0 g)
Sodium 670 mg
Protein 15 g
Total Fat 21 g

3. Ketchup vs. BBQ Sauce

And the winner is...the ketchup!

According to Theresa, most brands of BBQ sauce are just ketchup with a lot of added sugar. She recommends choosing an organic ketchup to maximize the nutritional value and avoiding brands that use high-fructose corn syrup as a sweetener.

Ketchup (1 tbsp)
Calories 25
Carbohydrates 5 g (Sugars 5 g)
Sodium 125 mg
Protein 0.2 g
Total Fat 0 g

BBQ Sauce (1 tbsp)
Calories 30
Carbohydrates 8 g (Sugars 6 g)
Sodium 220 mg
Protein 0 g
Total Fat 0 g

4. Mayonnaise vs. Mustard

And the winner is...the mustard by a landslide!

Mustard is virtually calorie-free since most are made with just vinegar, mustard seed and turmeric (for colour). Better yet, mustard seed is a natural anti-inflammatory, while turmeric boasts anti-cancer properties.

Mayonnaise (1 tbsp)
Calories 100
Carbohydrates 1 g (Sugars 0 g)
Sodium 95 mg
Protein 0.2 g
Total Fat 11 g

Mustard (1 tbsp)
Calories 0
Carbohydrates 0 g (Sugars 0 g)
Sodium 120 mg
Protein 0.2 g
Total Fat 0 g

5. Steak vs. Ribs

And the winner is...the steak!

Steak is definitely leaner, and if you choose your cut wisely, you get more protein and less fat per mouthful. Ribs are not only high in fat but are typically slathered in high-sugar BBQ sauce (see above).

Calories 753
Carbohydrates 11 g
Sodium 933 mg
Protein 74 g
Total Fat 46 g

Calories 1,014
Carbohydrates 49 g
Sodium 1,577 mg
Protein 83 g
Total Fat 55 g

6. Corn on the Cob vs. Baked Potato

And the winner is...the baked potato!

Although the corn is lower in calories, the potato boasts a lot of fibre and potassium, which are great for your health.

Corn on the Cob
Calories 74
Carbohydrates 16 g (Sugars 3 g)
Sodium 1 mg
Protein 2 g
Total Fat 1 g

Potato Salad
Calories 163
Carbohydrates 36 g (Sugars 2 g)
Sodium 12 mg
Protein 3 g
Total Fat 0 g

7. Butter vs. Sour Cream

And the winner is...sour cream!

Butter has three times the calories of sour cream, so it's best to avoid it.

Calories 102
Carbohydrates 0 g (Sugars 0 g)
Sodium 81 mg
Protein 0 g
Total Fat 11 g

Sour Cream
Calories 30
Carbohydrates 1 g (Sugars 0 g)
Sodium 7 mg
Protein 0 g
Total Fat 2 g



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