Is your salad sabotaging your attempt to eat healthy? Believe it or not, you have to be just as careful ordering a salad at a restaurant as you do when you order anything else off of the menu. Many people go to restaurants with the intention of eating healthy, so they order a salad; however, most restaurants’ salads pack more calories, fat and sodium than a value meal from your local fast food joint! Their serving sizes are often too big, and pile on high-calorie toppings such as cheese, dressing and protein. Even creating your own salad at a salad bar can rack up the calories if you’re not careful. Majority of salad dressings have close to 1000 mg of sodium! Pouring on one of these salad dressings is like pouring salt over fresh lettuce leaves.
Here are some simple tips for making healthy salad choices that will help keep your greens from making you gain weight:
- Always order salad dressing on the side so you can adjust the serving size
- Order a light vinaigrette or oil and vinegar option
- Cut large serving sizes of salad in half
- Ask for no cheese, or cheese on the side so you can control the serving size
- Watch out for added calories in the form of croutons, candied nuts or bacon. Ask to omit them, or order them on the side so you can adjust the serving size.
- Make your own healthy salad dressings at home to skip out on high-sodium, high-calorie store-bought brands
Try our Sweet and Simple Peanut Butter Salad Dressing recipe. It’s healthy, easy to make and delicious to eat!