Eating a salad everyday is a good lifelong habit to produce. It is an easy way to get in a few servings of fresh vegetables packed full of vitamins and nutrients.
Most people do not get enough fresh fruits and vegetables into their diets. We need to be eating more dark green and orange vegetables. If you do eat more green salads, you will likely have a higher amount of antioxidants—vitamin C and E, folic acid, and alpha- and beta- carotene. Antioxidants are substances that help protect your body from damage caused by harmful disease.
Even experts agree that there is a direct link between eating lots of fruits and vegetables and lower risks of many diseases, particularly cancer.
Eating leafy salads also gives you much needed fiber in your body. Think of fiber working like sand. It grips and grinds out bad bacteria in the body.
Eating salads can also help us eat less by filling you up with good foods so that you eat less of the cooked meal. Be sure to make your own salad dressing, or use low calorie dressing.
What are the best choices for vegetables?
- Green leafy vegetables, such as kale, chard, collard greens, spinach, parsley, and dark green and red leaf lettuce are high in carotenoids, and best eaten raw in salads. Head lettuce is fine to eat occasionally, but it offers very little nutrition. If you need that extra “crunch mix your salads with head lettuce and some leafy lettuce like spinach to help adjust your taste buds to new textures.
- Broccoli—both the green flower heads and stalks are nutritious.
- Red and green peppers are a good addition to salads.
- Garlic and onions are nutritious eaten raw. Mix up a batch of homemade salad dressing and add these ingredients into it for an easy addition to your health.
- Tomatoes—which are actually a fruit, are good in salads. Cherry or grape tomatoes are a great and easy addition to salads.
- Carrots are sweet and high in carotenoids. They are super when grated into any kind of salad.
- When preparing your salad, make the majority of it vegetables, and keep it light for the extra toppings like cheese, eggs, nuts, and salad dressing.
- items high in iron that you can add are chick peas (garbanzo beans), kale, beets, and almonds