Eating a salad is probably the first thing we all think of when it comes to weight loss, but does it actually help with weight loss ? Of course salads are supposed to be very healthy and low calorie, but only if you use the right ingredients. In fact some salads can contain more calories than a normal meal especially from restaurants/fast food places because many off them add a list of high calorie ingredients to make it taste better. However, if you cut out too many ingredients like dressing and protein your salad will end up being too skimpy making you feel unsatisfied with the meal.
Luckily for you we have the perfect healthy mix of ingredients to include within your salad that makes it satisfying while also being low calorie, but first understanding what a caloric deficit is and how it will help with weight loss is very important.
Creating A Caloric Deficit For Weight Loss
The most important principle if you want to lose body weight is that you have to be in a caloric deficit and there is no way around that. This deficit can either come from the diet or exercise or a combination of both. Although, doing a combination of both has been proven to be the most effective for consistent weight loss.
So remember to focus on a caloric deficit and make most of your calories (70%) come from healthy whole unprocessed foods, you’ll see instant results. Now eating a salad can help you lose weight, but only if it helps you decrease your total caloric intake so that you’re in a deficit.
The 4 Ingredients To Include
Now that you fully understand what a caloric deficit is here are the 4 ingredients to include to make a perfect salad for weight loss:
Use A Variety Of Leafy Greens
Vegetables such as spinach, kale, iceberg lettuce and a few others are what we call leafy greens. They have several properties which make them the perfect food for weight loss since they’re low in calories/carbs also containing a high amount of fiber, nutrients and water. For optimal nutrition, mix up the greens you have in the salad and try not to just have 1-2 types in the bowl.
No matter if you choose grilled chicken breast or canned tuna having some lean protein will allow you to feel less hungry while being in a caloric deficit, this is because eating protein gives you a higher satiety.
A Handful Of Nuts
Eating just 10 grams of nuts/seeds a day will lower your risk of developing chronic diseases such as respiratory disease, diabetes, cancer and heart disease. Furthermore, nuts are high in dietary fibre, nutrients, protein and healthy fats which make them the perfect addition to any salad. Although, you must remember to add only a handful of nuts and nothing more because nuts are a very high in calories.
Good Oil & Vinegar For The Dressing
Oil ? yes oils may contain a lot of calories and fats, but many nutrients found in your leafy greens will be absorbed better when there’s fat around. Specifically the fat soluble vitamins A, D, E and k. Try 1 teaspoon of either olive oil, coconut oil, macadamia oil, avocado oil or canola oil because the monounsaturated fats in these oils help keep your blood cholesterol levels in check and reduce your risk of heart disease.
As for the vinegar it doesn’t really matter which type you choose since their nutritional values are relatively similar. This is great because you can alternate between different vinegars so the taste of your salad can be different every time ! Vinegars are a proven fat releaser and studies have shown that it can help prevent blood sugar spikes after meals, but always remember to look at the nutrition label as some cheaper vinegars often contain a lot of added sugars.
Hopefully this article has given you a good idea of what to put into your salad to make it effective for weight loss and if you have anymore questions about salads or weight loss in general then leave a comment down below.