Health & Wellness: Don’t Ruin That Salad!

by LINDSEY FISHER

Spring and summer salads are a staple in my diet. Fall and winter salads are as well, but these warmer months tend to provide a bit more variety. Greens are part of my daily diet; in actuality, I eat greens at every meal and never get bored. Did you know that athletes need to consume a minimum of 5 cups of vegetables a day to aid in maximum health and performance?

Spinach, kale, arugula, cabbage, romaine…so many textures and so many flavors to play with. The creative side of me loves the blank canvas of my salad bowl. Grilled veggies, eggs, goat cheese, raw nuts, roasted veggies, fruits, toppings from Trader Joe’s, leftover sweet potatoes, beans… The options are endless! 

But one thing I always do is make my own dressing.

This is one of those simple swaps that make a huge difference. Easy to do, also easy not to do; but if you make your own, you will never go back to bottled. Healthy tip for June: stay away from the bottled salad dressing. In fact, don’t even visit that isle in the grocery store. Spend your time on the perimeter of the store choosing whole, fresh foods and then make your own dressing. It is very easy to ruin a perfectly great salad by glopping on a bunch of processed dressing – making your “healthy” salad now closer to the fat and sodium content of a cheeseburger and fries!

Bottled dressings are filled with highly-processed ingredients and fillers. Many contain high fructose corn syrup (not good), added colors, hidden trans fats, and are extremely high in sodium.

And then there is the added SUGAR. It’s a killer but it keeps the consumer coming back because it “tastes good.”  Look at the labels on your dressings in your fridge. One tsp contains 4 grams of sugar! So if your salad dressing serving is 2 tablespoons, you are getting at least 24 grams of added sugar on your “health salad.” Ladies, that’s almost your allowance for the entire day. And, that’s if you only use the serving size amount.

Making your own dressings is simple, delicious and easy to create variety so you do not get bored with the same flavors day after day.

Simple salad dressing tips:
– citrus (lemon, lime or fresh orange juice) adds a ton of flavor and little calories
– spring and summer are the seasons to grow your own herbs, which also add lots of flavor to any dish

Balsamic Vinaigrette
3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp lemon juice
½ tsp raw honey
1 tsp Dijon mustard
3 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Citrus Vinaigrette
3 tbsp fresh 100% orange juice
2 tbsp lemon juice
½ tsp raw honey
2 tsp Dijon mustard
3 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Lemon Vinaigrette
Juice of 1 full lemon
3 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Pinch of kosher salt & pepper
2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley

Creamy Garlic Dressing
½ cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
¼ cup apple cider vinegar
3 cloves crushed garlic
3 tbsp fresh lemon juice
2 tbsp fresh chopped parsley
1 tsp Himalayan Salt
½ tsp Dijon mustard
1 tbsp raw honey (or pure maple syrup)

Interested in making changes in your health or adding value to your company culture? Contact Lindsey at lindsey@LindseyFisherNC.com or connect with her on social media @LindseyFisherNC

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