As the movement to become healthier continues, many of us are choosing salads instead of burgers. Getting our servings of greens and veggies is just what the doctor ordered, however, with the limitless toppings and array of dressings available, your salad could end up becoming unhealthy.
Great topping selections include vegetables, seeds, beans, nuts, and fresh fruit. If you eat meat, natural meats like grilled chicken and a hard-boiled egg are great too.
The top 3 things to avoid when ordering/making a salad are:
1. Pre-made/bottled salad dressings- both vinaigrettes and creamy types contain many hidden sugars. Ranch/blue cheese/French/thousand island type dressings are loaded with calories and saturated fat with zero nutritional value. The best option is healthy oil (like olive oil) and an acid (like vinegar or lemon) with some sea salt and pepper. If you'd like a creamier dressing throw in some overly ripe avocado before tossing the salad to give it a thicker texture.
2. Cheese is very high in saturated fat, which increases your cholesterol levels and the high calorie content may result in packing on some extra-unwanted pounds.
3. Processed meats like cold cuts or bacon are filled with preservatives that have been linked to stomach cancer and they are loaded with sodium, which can leave you feeling bloated.
Lastly, it's very important to have healthy fats with your salad like oil (olive, sesame), nuts, and/or avocado. Without fats, our gut cannot absorb fat-soluble vitamins like Vitamin A, D, and E.