As you probably know, salads are high on fiber, low in calories, and their glycemic index is very low. They are delicious, rich in nutrients, and an excellent choice for those who are trying to lose weight.
Here’s an easy-to-follow formula that will bring balance to your salads to ensure the right ratio of nutrients your body needs.
Main Greens: 2 Cups
This is the base of your salad. Choose greens that are fresh, crisp, and full of body and crunch.
Choose 1: Baby spinach, butter lettuce, iceberg lettuce, leaf lettuce, mesclun mix, oak leaf lettuce, red-tip leaf lettuce, romaine.
Accent Greens: 1/2 Cup
On their own, their flavor may be too powerful to stand, but they are the perfect complement to add flavor and peppery zest to the main greens
Choose 1-2: Arugula, curly endive, escarole, mild basil, radicchio, Swiss chard, watercress, young beet greens.
Vegetables: 1/2 Cup
You can slice them, dice them, cub them, or shred them. Veggies color, texture, and, most importantly, nutrition.
Choose 1-4: Alfalfa sprouts, artichoke hearts, asparagus, bean sprouts, beets, bell peppers, broccoli, carrots, cauliflower, celery, cucumbers, purple cabbage, radishes, sugar snap peas.
Protein: 1/3 Cup
These items balance the salad and make it a real meal that will keep you full and satisfied for hours.
Choose 0-2: Grilled ahi tuna, grilled chicken, edamame, boiled egg, feta cheese, firm tofu, garbanzo beans, kidney beans, mozzarella, pepper jack, salmon (chunk), shrimp, grilled steak, roasted turkey.
Flavor Enhancers: 1 Tablespoon
They might be veggies, some might be fruits, others fungi. It doesn’t really matter, these items are so unique one or two will be your best bet.
Choose 1-2: Caramelized onion, chives, dried cherries, dried cranberries, green onions, jalapeno peppers, minced garlic, mushrooms, olives, peperoncinis, pickled veggies, raisins, sliced red onion, sun-dried tomato.
Fruits: 1/2 Cup
If the correct amount is used, fruits can ass an unexpected spark of juicy sweetness. Note that most fruits tend to pair better with buttermilk-based dressings.
Choose 0-2: Apples, apricots, cherry tomatoes, grape tomatoes, mandarin oranges, pears, pomegranate kernels, tomatoes.
Nuts/Seeds: 1 Tablespoon
These little nutritional bombshells dial up the crunch factor and deliver minerals, good fats, and protein. Always choose the unsalted sort.
Choose 0-2: Almonds, cashews peanuts, pecans, pumpkin seeds, quinoa, sunflower seeds, walnuts.
Enjoy your salad! 😉
For further reference, here’s my latest eBook titled A Healthier You,a step-by-step approach to becoming healthier and fitter.
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