Salads are a go-to when people are trying to lose weight. I’m just going to state this now because A LOT of people are hung up on just eating salads for lunches and dinners. This is NOT a way of life. Your body should be important to you, so take care of it.
You need to learn to live a life you enjoy, and that includes food! By learning how to have the right mindset and willpower you can enjoy every single food and snack out there! Everything always comes down to moderation. My goal is to show you how to create a healthy balanced lifestyle and learn to have a good relationship with food.
Some of these articles might help you learn a bit more.
I do love my fairshare of salads, however I usually need it alongside a full meal, which includes my protein, carbs, fats and veg! If I do just have a salad for dinner I make it huge and add in a whole chicken breast or steak.
Salads are delicious and fun to make, since you can top it with whatever you want, however there are 7 things that could be hurting your healthy salads. You should avoid these ingredients, which could kill your fitness goals progress by adding a lot of extra calories to your “healthy meal”. Use these tips to help you understand why salads might not be the best option for some of those people who eat this on a regular basis.
Worst dressing yet! I do love a good caesar salad every now and then, but I do know it’s NOT healthy. 2 TBSP is 159 calories and 17g of fat… Other dressings like Ranch, Blue Cheese, or Chipotle all fall under this category of dressings not to use. They are loaded with fat, but also don’t have any nutritional value.
HEALTHIER OPTIONS: Vinaigrettes are so much better and tastier in my opinion. I prefer to use just a small amount of extra-virgin olive oil with a balsamic vinaigrette.
I’ve been obsessed with a simple side salad, cucumbers, lettuce, tomatoes, some salt, pepper and white vinegar balsamic and some olive oil. Sometimes I add some lemon or lime juice and it just tastes so fresh and clean!
Deep Fried Tortilla Chips
Instead of enjoying a full treat meal at a restaurant, people will turn to a salad like a “Southwestern” one. They think it’s a healthier option, but in reality it’s not. That type of salad is usually covered in a creamy dressing, cheese, and deep fried tortilla chips. Or worse it comes in a big Tortilla bowl!
HEALTHIER OPTIONS: You can still get what you want and enjoy a salad, however you just need to make some changes. Ask to switch the dressing for a vinaigrette and have the dressing on the side. If the creamy dressing completes the salad for you, then having the dressing on the side is better. Just try not to even use half of what they give you. Also ask to hold off on the cheese or tortilla chips. Or just pick one or the other.
Having nuts in your diet is great, it’s a good source of healthy fats. In some salads the nuts are glazed with a sugar coding, which isn’t that good for you.
HEALTHIER OPTIONS: Try having dry oven-roasted nuts to save you on that sugar intake and unwanted calories.
I love plain almonds, pecans and walnuts. Chop those up and add a few on top of your salad. Make sure not to go crazy with them, as a couple grams of those and you packed on a ton of fat and calories for the day.
I ALWAYS recommend having protein added to your salad, but you need to make sure that it’s not fried or else your “clean eating” goes right out the window. This goes for any type of seafood, falafels, chicken, etc. If you want that as a “treat meal” I would suggest eating a burger instead of a salad… Just sayin… Sweet potato fries with chipotle mayo and a burger… YUM!
HEALTHIER OPTIONS: When getting protein on your salad, just make sure it’s grilled instead of fried!
I LOVE cheese and I”m not saying all cheese is bad. I do however notice some people piling on the cheese and that my friend is not going to help you lose weight.
HEALTHIER OPTIONS: Adding some Feta cheese to your salad is a great idea! It can be lower in fat and in calories compared to all the other cheeses. Try adding a cheese stick to your salad, which can help you eyeball out your calories and it’s just good for portion control.
People think since its dried fruit, it has to be healthy for you? Not 100% right… These little suckers can add up pretty quickly on a salad or even just munching them on their own. Per 1/3 cup of Craisins (40g) there are 123 calories, 33 carb, and 25g of sugar! I don’t know about you, but for that amount of sugar I’d rather have one serving size of Chapman’s Frozen Yogurt… See why these could add up very quickly on your sugar intake? People are using them often for their “healthy” salad, but little do they know, they’re basically eating candy!
HEALTHIER OPTIONS: Instead of having a “fruit” that sticks to your teeth like candy, maybe consider adding some apple slices, sprinkle some blueberries or strawberries on top. If you do enjoy craisins, I recommend partitioning them out. Portion control is everything when it comes to any physique goal.
Who doesn’t love that crouton crunch in their salad? I do once in awhile! However, this is a simple way to just completely overdo your salad by adding refined carbohydrates. It’s roughly around 35 calories for only 6 pieces!
HEALTHIER OPTIONS: Bread isn’t bad if you’re eating clean 100% whole wheat. There is nothing wrong with having this in your salad once in awhile, but you do have to understand it takes it away from being healthy. OR, make your own croutons with whole wheat bread and put it in the oven. There are always a way to make fun and interesting!
If you’re one of these people who add in some of these products, just remember if you have a goal to lose weight or gain muscle mass, you need to re-think about what you’re actually putting into your body. None of these products do anything to help your body grow in any shape or form.
You can make simple salads actually taste like the best salad you’ve ever had! I’m telling you white balsamic vinegar, some olive oil, salt, pepper is literally all you need in a dressing! Squeeze some lime or lemon too!