Marinara Sauce May Not Be As Nutritious As You Think

The ultimate energizer, perfect the night before a race or hike. A carb-filled meal every American has both good and bad associations with. Of course, we're talking about pasta! There's nothing more filling than a plate of your favorite pasta, but the debate on whether the dish is actually part of a healthy diet has raged on for years.

The pasta itself is full of carbohydrates and made from grain, which is fairly straightforward with no surprising ingredients. However, the sauce we put on top of the dish is a completely different story. We take it for granted that a classic tomato sauce must be healthy, but when closely examined, the sauce surprises us with not-so-healthy nutritional values and ingredients that aren't good for our bodies.

As it turns out, one of the most popular types of sauce on the market is not as nutritious as we thought. Read about it below!

What's in the sauce?

Pasta sauces can be loaded up with salt, sodium, sugar, and preservatives. Because of these ingredients, marinara sauce can be especially unhealthy for you.

Prevention included marinara sauce on their list of food items that are terrible for your heart health, citing the high sodium and sugar content. They're not alone with their assessment. Eat This, Not That reports on the healthiest and unhealthiest pasta sauces, with several marinara sauces on the market being flagged for their high sodium, sugar, or soybean oil content. While a small amount of sodium is important to a healthy diet, consuming foods high in sodium contributes to high blood pressure, which in turn may lead to cardiac issues (via USFDA). Considering your daily sodium intake, reading the nutritional labels on the sauce, and understanding portion sizes are all recommended to manage nutritious diets. 

So when you find yourself reaching for the classic marinara, don't forget to consider the sauce's nutritional values! You'll be able to make the healthiest, most informed decision.