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Healthy Eating Tip: Dealing With Salad Dressing

Salads are a staple of healthy eating, and if you're trying to lose weight you might be adding them into your daily diet. While the greens may be low in calories, chances are good the dressing is not. Many dressings are high in fat, as well as calories. Overdressing your greens can subvert your healthy salad intentions, but skipping the dressing makes a salad dull and ultimately unsatisfying. The simple technique of placing the dressing on the side and dipping your fork, then taking a bite of greens will satisfy your palate and help you keep your waistline trim. Remember: Dip the fork, don't dress the salad.


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lilxmissxmolly lilxmissxmolly 8 years
I make my own salad dressing every day with my lunch. I have a big spinach salad sprinkled w/some feta cheese, drizzled with olive oil, lemon juice, balsamic vinaigrette, and some mustard. its DELICIOUS, and I don't have to deal with the HFCS and nasty chemicals of grocery-store dressings.
MaggieLei MaggieLei 8 years
I lived in a part of the world where all they ever put on salad was mayo or oil and vinegar. Now I can't stand normal salad dressings. All I really use is olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Does anyone have a link to the studies about raw veggies? I would love to see it. Is it like the skim milk thing where the vitamins in milk are fat souluble so you don't get as much of the nutrition if you drink skim? Thanks.
lemamike lemamike 8 years
If anyone here has a magic bullet...or even doesnt, here's a great at home salad recipe I love!! Not even for health reasons but this dressing is so good I won't eat it out of a jar anymore! 1/4 cup white balsamic vinegar 1/2 cup E.V. Olive Oil 3 cloves garlic 1 tsp salt 1 tsp pepper Lemon Juice (from a few wedges of lemon. if you don't have the lemons it will be good without) If you dont have a magic bullet then just chop the garlic and shake very well. A magic bullet will whip all this nicely. This amount can last a while if you're cooking for yourself. Plus, a very yummy alternative to usual regular balsamic dressings. If you find it to be too tart because of the vinegar and lemon a small pinch of sugar can cut that taste. Enjoy!!
LaurenG22 LaurenG22 8 years
This is rediculous... I always go to nice restaurants and take the salad as is, it is lightly dressed and perfect (unless its some grimey, chain-crap restaurant, the place usually dresses the salad nicely). I always make homemade dressing if I am eating at home, and I am sure it is not bad for me.
soapbox soapbox 8 years
I was never big on dressing. I like my salad in lemon juice or dried fruit, which add enough flavor as is. Aquintances always looked at me funny and cracked jokes at me for eating plain salads. I just smile and nod my head at their plate of salad dressing with little flecks of veggies on it. ;)
runningesq runningesq 8 years
thanks wack! I have them in black too (they are Ginny by Enzo and were recently on sale at , if you're interested ;))
wackdoodle wackdoodle 8 years
That's ok runningesq - you've got good taste in shoes. Love those.
runningesq runningesq 8 years
and I just realized I wrote wakadodooable.. wtf. my apologies, WACKDOODLE!
runningesq runningesq 8 years
Wackadodooable is absolutely right! You can't absorb the nutrients in the veggies without the aid of fat. Go for olive oil -- good for you fats!
SweetNGlow SweetNGlow 8 years
I like to top my salads with a poached egg (so the yolk is still soft). When they yolk breaks, it makes a warm and wonderful "dressing" loaded with protein.
alliep627 alliep627 8 years
My secret: WALDEN FARMS dressings. I tried them several years ago and I just thought ewwww. no. i don't think so. Tried them again this week and wow. I haven't had regular dressing in such a long time that now the Walden Farms is really flavorful and decent. They are ZERO calories, zero carbs, gluten free. I have blue cheese and caesar. There's lots more variety too. Zero is zero calories! I know they are mostly water and flavorings and some stuff made from sea week but that's ok. I need zero calories right now on my salads. I've lost 6 pounds this year!
Spectra Spectra 8 years
I always make my own lowfat salad dressing with a couple teaspoons of olive oil and red wine vinegar, but I also put nuts on my salad so I make sure to get enough fat with my greens. But when I order a salad at a restaurant, I always ask for salsa as dressing if I can. Or if they don't have it, I order my dressing on the side and I lightly drizzle the dressing on the salad (I probably only use a teaspoon or so). Because, like wackdoodle, I do not like the texture of salad dressing on my fork in my mouth. It creeps me out for some reason.
Marlovestar Marlovestar 8 years
I shake it up in a container as well! I also like to make my own yogurt based.
wackdoodle wackdoodle 8 years
Sorry for the confusion - you should put full fat/regular dressing on your salad is what the researchers found. You can also add avocado or nuts but you're gonna have to add a good amount to equal the health benefits of that simple tablespoon of regular dressing. The recommendation was for salad dressing and the research was not sponsor by salad dressing manufacturers or the oil industry. It was a study looking at how humans can get the full benefits from the vegetables they eat. Now as for putting the dressing on the fork then dipping it in the salad - uggh that implies that I put the whole fork in my mouth and lick the fork as I eat and strangely I don't. I have always only put the tip of the tines in my both and tried to avoid scrapping my teeth on the metal. Weird huh. Plus ooowww saliva transfer back to the container with the dressing.
Francoisehardly Francoisehardly 8 years
I agree about avoiding low fat ones and even making one's own dressing to avoid the extra stuff that isn't needed. If I have berries around I sometimes might use strawberries or blueberries in salads to give me even more reason to need less dressing.
ilanac13 ilanac13 8 years
everyone makes fun of me because i'm a 'dipper' - rather than a salad pourer. my mom got me the salad spritzers and i have found that just 2-3 spritzes of the dressing will be enough for my salad, and the bottle says that it's usually around 5 cals per spritz.
True-Song True-Song 8 years
So, wackdoodle, don't you mean that's evidence that they SHOULD put regular salad dressing on? And does that study mean you could use avocado instead?
wackdoodle wackdoodle 8 years
Ah, there were at least two scientific studies released last year that clearly found evidence that people should not NOT put regular salad dressing on their salads. Humans cannot get the nutrients from raw vegetables particularly the leafy greens without the aid of some oil. Strange but true (much like how we cannot get the nutrients from carrots when they are raw but we can when they are cooked). Therefore these researchers then the ADA stated that people should add at least a tablespoon and no more than two tablespoon of REGULAR full fat salad dressing (this could be oil/vinegar or a cream dressing) to their salads and they should avoid at all cost Low-fat salad dressings as they are loaded with sugar and do not help one absorb nutrients from the salad. So whether I like it or not I add at least a tablespoon of some sort of regular dressing to my salad (a least two cups of greens to 1 tablespoon dressing) and I shake my salad to distribute the dressing as evenly as possible. I avoid low-fat dressing like the plague because of the excess sugars and additives.
LaurenFSU LaurenFSU 8 years
I like to use salsa for salad dressing. It tastes great and salsa is low in calories!!
psterling psterling 8 years
I do this too and its amazing how little dressing you use while still totally feeling satisfied with your salad.
Halie Halie 8 years
I don't like salad dressing. I usually skip it and eat a dry salad and I LOVE IT! But sometimes I'll add hummus or perfectly spiced beans and use that as a condiment. Much better than dressing (bleck)
True-Song True-Song 8 years
When I make them at home (or get them to go) I pour about a tablespoon (I was an obsessive measurer for a while so I've gotten good at eyeballing) into the container and then shake it vigorously. It is amazing how much a little dollop will spread through your salad, leaving everything with a really thin coat. It's perfect.
Antioxidant Antioxidant 8 years
Good idea. Too much dressing adds calories and can overpower the salad.
lulabernie lulabernie 8 years
Great tip! I remember ordering a salad while I was eating out and checking the calories on the restaurant's website later (to confirm I made a better choice for myself) only to find out the salad wasn't that bad, but the dressing alone was almost 1000 calories! From now on, this gives me a way to enjoy salad dressings, but this will save me from having to put the basic low-fat dressing on everything.
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