Monday, July 11, 2011

Take a Fresh Look at Salads and Weight Loss

It’s not a big secret that salads have always been associated with dieting. Therefore, when we think about going on a diet, most of us think about eating a lot of salads. However, while many of us envision just lettuce and dressing, that type of salad is long gone.

Nowadays, salads are pretty versatile and can even have just as many calories as other unhealthy foods do. You definitely want to stay away from these types of salads if you’re trying to lose with. Typical foods found on these salads include fried chicken, breaded chicken, high-fat dressing, bacon, cheese, etc. Below are some ideas of great-tasting salad ingredients that are healthier for you than those listed previously.

Whole Grains – While grain pasta salads are great, nutritional and tasty, but so are the classics such as Tabouli. This Middle Eastern dish contains tomatoes, cucumbers and bulgur wheat which leaves your taste buds happy and stomach full. You can also toss vegetables in with brown rice and oil-and-vinegar dressing.

Seeds and Nuts – There are many seeds and nuts that are healthy and nutritious for you, and taste great on salads. These include: pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, pine nuts and hemp. The various nuts and seeds give you plenty of room to experiment and many great-tasting salads to create!

Meat – To make salads more filling and rich in protein, adding meat is a great thing to do. However, the meat needs to be lean meat. Therefore, think about adding turkey, lean beef, tuna, grilled salmon or chicken to your salads. You can pair these meats up with a variety of other ingredients including pecans, tomatoes, cannellini beans and small pieces of blue cheese.

Legumes – Another great trick for adding protein to salads is with legumes and beans. Beans are easy to cook, and work taste great when served on a bed of greens! You can even mix it up by cooking different varieties of beans, mixing them together and then mixing them with whole grains and a tasty dressing!

Salads as the Main Dish – It is possible to eat salad as your main dish, especially whole grain salads. There are also various ethnic pasta salads that work great too. A couple of excellent choices include Greek pasta salad and Oriental rice noodle salad.

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