When it comes to healthy eating, salads are often the focus. However, choose the wrong toppings and you’ll likely undo all of the goodness a salad offers, making it harder than ever to lose weight. Yet, who wants to eat a bland old bed of lettuce with nothing on it? Luckily, you don’t have to.
Here are five steps you can follow to help you build a salad that is as pleasing to your taste buds as it is to your body:
Step #1: Start with a proper foundation. Although you may think of a salad being shredded leaf lettuce, the darker greens (such as spinach and kale) contain more nutrients. Pick your favorite leafy greens and mix and match them for the greatest health benefits.
Step #2: Pick a protein to add to it. In order to create a salad that satisfies your hunger for a longer period of time, you’re going to want to top it with a healthy protein source. Some great options to consider are grilled chicken, shredded lean pork, tuna, salmon, eggs, and/or low-fat cheese (like mozzarella, Swiss, or feta).
Step #3: Top it with more veggies. Just because you’re getting a large serving of vegetables in the leafy greens that you’re using for you salad doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t make it a veggie powerhouse by adding more. Some tasty options include bell peppers, onions, green onions, tomatoes, cucumbers, and carrots.
Step #4: Try putting fruit into it. Add some extra tastes and textures to your salad by throwing some fruit slices and dices to it. A few of the most salad-friendly options are strawberries, mandarin oranges, pears, and grapes.
Step #5: Add a healthy fat. Putting a healthy fat on your salad helps your body better absorb all of the nutrients it contains while keeping your hunger at bay until your next meal. A few healthy fat options to try are avocado, walnuts, almond slivers, sunflower seeds, and olive oil.
Salads can help you meet your health goals, but that doesn’t mean that they can’t taste great. Follow these five simple steps and you’ll create a salad that provides both benefits!