What exactly is Mayo?
We all know that slightly sour, and salty, creamy texture, godlike tasting sauce that you put on your sandwich. But do you know what it really is? Mayo has originated in Spain in about 1750. In the old days, it was made from only three ingredients. Raw egg yolks, oil and lemon juice or vinegar. But as civilization progressed, ready to eat food has become norms in the stores. As did mayo. Nowadays mayo producers usually put a lot of food additives. It makes this good stuff not so good anymore.
It is risky to your health.
We are often told by health organizations that fat is bad. And, mayo is not exactly a fat-free food. Actually, fatty oil is its main ingredient. After that follows egg yolks, which, as it is told, is high in cholesterol levels. And we all know that high fat and cholesterol levels in your blood can clog up blood vessels rather quickly and make you obese.
Also, mayo is high in salt content (that’s why it’s so delicious). And as far as we know, extremely increased salt intake can’t be good for your health. On the other hand, how many of us eat a pound of mayo a day? Probably none, so it shouldn’t be a big deal if you’re just a casual mayo taster.
But it has benefits.
Since mayo is made of vegetable oil, it is rich in Omega 3 fatty acids. Omega 3 is essential for the heart. Healthy brain function and sharp vision. The human body can’t produce Omega 3 on its own, so mayo might be a tasty supplement. It has been proven by scientists, that mayo contains a lot of vitamin E, which can prevent strokes and keep your skin healthy.
Also, as it is known, vitamins A, D, E, K is only fat-soluble, so a little bit of fat from mayo might help your body to absorb these vital elements. Evermore Health CEO Alessandra Sollberger has explained that mayonnaise is mostly unsaturated fat. It’s the “healthy fat”. This kind of fat helps to “reduce the risk of high blood cholesterol levels.”.
Mayo has been found to be rich in minerals too. Especially in potassium and selenium. These minerals strengthen the immune system, help fight aging processes and help to keep your metabolism strong.
As all food that is made with raw eggs, mayo can be a salmonella concern. Especially if it is not produced right. There have been documented cases of salmonellosis outbreak linked to poorly made mayonnaise. For example, in 1955 the outbreak was reported in Denmark. 10,000 people have been affected. The root cause was mayo that has been made in the poorly sanitized kitchen. But researchers found out that this mayo had a pH of about 5 to 6. After several cases, the reason has been found and prevention measures have been established.
Nowadays it is recommended by various food safety agencies, that mayo would not have a pH higher of 4.1. In such an acidic environment, any salmonella bacteria dies, so mayo with a pH of 4.1 or lower is totally safe to eat.
Should I eat it?
As many things in life mayonnaise have its benefits and disadvantages. However, high-fat content should not scare you. Especially because it is a healthy fat. Also, mayonnaise is rich in vitamins, minerals and Omega 3 fatty acids. But if you are concerned about preservatives and other food additives. You could make mayo yourself. Just don’t forget to add enough acid like vinegar or lemon juice to protect you from salmonella.
A quick recipe for delicious homemade mayonnaise:
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