Remember when you were little and your mother would tell you to eat your salad? She had her reasons for telling you this. In this article, you will find 11 of them.
I have to admit that as a child I hated eating salads. It tasted ‘weird’ and it was not as fun as ‘regular’ food or candy. When I started taking nutrition more seriously I understood that there was something special about this green dish.
Salads are often neglected and often thought of as less nutritional than main courses. This is a common misconception among people with bad nutritional habits.
By eating salads, I do not mean depending solely on salads for your nutritional intake. As a general rule, every balanced nutritional plan should include at least 1 small salad along with the main course. Personally I love to start any of my big meals with a large salad.
Table of Contents
- 1 What is a healthy salad?
- 1.1 Salads contain lots of fiber, antioxidants and enzymes
- 1.2 Salads support Healthy bowel movements
- 1.3 Salads help you eat less calories
- 1.4 Salads help with overeating
- 1.5 Salads provide increased green uptake
- 1.6 Salads prepare your taste buds for the meal
- 1.7 Salads contain healthy fats
- 1.8 Salads provide the health benefits of spices
- 1.9 Salads are fast and easy to make
- 1.10 You can never get bored with salads
- 1.11 Salads are delicious and refreshing
- 2 Closing notes
What is a healthy salad?
And before we begin, let me make one last thing clear: A healthy salad is made of colorful vegetables and/or fruits (such as leafy greens, tomatoes, broccoli etc) with the addition of spices and 1 or more sources of healthy fats (olive oil, avocado etc).
Adding croutons, potato, breads, mayo-based or ready-made dressings, artificial ingredients and the kitchen sink does not make up a healthy salad in ANY OF THE KNOWN UNIVERSES.
Let’s now take a look at 11 benefits of eating salads.
Salads contain lots of fiber, antioxidants and enzymes
Eating a healthy salad will help you get more of the important anti-oxidants that help you remove toxins, free radicals and other poisons from your system.
It also includes fiber and enzymes which are required for healthy digestion and helping the body to extract energy from food. Read about enzymes and their importance on health in my upcoming article.
Salads support Healthy bowel movements
Theoretically speaking, eating your salad before your meal will create a green lining in your stomach for the foods to rest upon.
This, in turn, will help you with the next step of digestion, which is removal of excrements by defecation, by lubricating your intestines.
Salads help you eat less calories
Even though eating less calories does not always mean fat loss, it is still an added benefit.
This is beneficial for caloric restricted diets.
Salads help with overeating
Salads can help you with your weight goals by preventing you from overeating. This is especially helpful if you are trying to eat less in order to lose weight.
By eating a big salad, you will feel fuller faster and subsequently eat less calorie-dense foods.
Salads provide increased green uptake
Making a big salad is a great way to increase your veggie consumption. As we grow older, it is very important to increase the consumption of natural foods in order to sustain better health through better digestion, higher antioxidant uptake and so much more.
Salads prepare your taste buds for the meal
A balanced salad will stimulate your taste buds and have them ready in order to fully enjoy the main course of your meal.
Salads contain healthy fats
A balanced salad will contain all the healthy fats that will help with nutrient absorption (such as proteins).
Monounsaturated fats such as olive oil is a must for a balanced salad. Extra virgin olive oil is my personal favorite for use in any type of salad. I personally do not recommend any other type of oil.
Avoid adding too many saturated fats from processed foods such as fake cheeses and mayonnaise.
Instead, you can add real cheese such as Greek feta cheese or Italian Mozzarella.
Salads provide the health benefits of spices
Spices are a must for a balanced salad. Different spices have a variety of different health benefits that will shield you from disease and optimize your health.
You can read about the benefits of spices in my upcoming articles.
Salads are fast and easy to make
You do not need extraordinary culinary skills to make a great salad. All you need to do is gather the ingredients, chop the leaves, put in a bowl, add spices, the dressing and just mix!
It’s super fast and easy!
You can never get bored with salads
There are so many ways to make a salad that you will never get bored of especially if you have a creative/artistic nature. The combination of the ingredients you can use to make a salad is practically limitless.
Salads are delicious and refreshing
This should be common sense unless you have never tried a salad in your life.
You can get a great taste from a cool salad that will help your mood and it can be especially refreshing especially during a hot summer.
So that’s it. Salads are a must for a balanced nutrition. If you are not into salads but would like to get on board the ‘salad-train’ you can begin by making a very basic salad. Some greens along with a bit of olive oil and apple cider vinegar inside a bowl.
You must also make sure that you start your meal with the salad first since people who leave salad until the end of a meal tend to…well.. end up skipping it altogether!
If you want to learn more about how to make a balanced, healthy and delicious salad, make sure you subscribe to my newsletter for my upcoming article.
Do you enjoy eating salads? Is there some kind of salad that you do not like and what is your favorite salad? Let me know by posting a comment in the comments section below!
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by Nick Sigma
C.W.C, E.H, E-YRT200