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5 Ways You're Ruining Your Salad

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Lots of us feel pretty virtuous when eating salad because we think we're enjoying a healthy, low fat meal. The problem is though, salad doesn't always make for such a guilt-free lunch! Here are 5 ways you could be ruining your salad (and what to do about it):  

  1. Salad Dressings. With so many tasty looking salad dressings on the supermarket shelf, it's easy to assume they're all good for us. But shop-bought salad dressings are often packed with ingredients which add little nutritional value to our meals. Check the labels before you buy - lots of creamy dressings contain added sugar, salt, artificial preservatives, and are high in saturated fat. Yuck! For a healthier alternative, make your own dressing using olive oil, vinegar and fresh herbs. Or look for a high quality dressing which doesn't include these nasties. 

  2. Croutons. Another big no-go. There's no denying these crunchy bits of fried bread are very tasty, but croutons can add around 150 calories on top. Even homemade croutons will still add unnecessary calories and little to no nutritional value. Try stay clear of them all together and swap croutons for nuts and seeds insteads. 

  3. Cheese. A main culprit in restaurants and at salad bars, cheese is often high in calories, salt and saturated fat. Cheese can be a good source of protein and calcium though, so you don’t have to completely miss out. Try having a few slices of mozzarella or feta, which are lower fat options.

  4. Organic. We’ve heard it all, before but many of us still opt for the cheaper salad and vegetable options over going organic. I really do think it's worth going organic - not only for the taste (which is often much better), but for health reasons too. I enjoy my salad much more, knowing it doesn't come with an added side order of pesticide residues. 

  5. Protein. Sometimes we can forget to add a protein source to our salads and end up with a load of vegetables on a plate. Add a lsource of protein such as lean chicken, salmon or tuna. If you’re vegetarian like me, then mix it up with some marinated grilled tofu, nuts, seeds, eggs, halloumi...the options are endless! 

These are just a few easy swaps you can make to a enjoy a truly guilt-free salad. Got any more suggestions? Let me know in the comments!

  #Columns   #Health Hacker   #salad   #clean eating   #healthy   #vegetarian   #health hacks

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