5 good reasons to eat a salad today

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A cool crisp salad can be the basis for a light and refreshing meal. And with multiple health benefits, consuming a serving of leafy greens each day can be one of the best habits to get into, summer or winter.

Eating salads makes a substantial contribution to disease prevention, healthy weight and youthful energy – and who isn’t interested in a bit more energy and vitality?

Here are 5 of those healthy benefits:

Source of Healthy Fibre

  • Fiber helps to reduce LDL or “bad” cholesterol.
  • It helps to control blood sugar.
  • Adequate fiber intake helps with weight loss and healthy weight maintenance.
  • It normalizes bowel movements, and aids in the prevention of bowel disease.
  • Proper fiber intake has been shown to reduce the recurrence and prevention of a number of cancers including colorectal, breast, mouth, throat and esophagus.

Nutritional benefits of fresh fruit and veg

Salad ingredients are loaded with vitamins and minerals, and a diet rich in vegetables and fruits can:

  • lower blood pressure
  • reduce risk of heart disease and stroke
  • prevent some types of cancer
  • lower risk of eye and digestive problems
  • decrease blood sugar levels which can help keep appetite in check
  • increase the level of powerful antioxidants in your blood.

The “super-greens”, such as kale, spinach, beet greens, watercress and Romaine lettuce, offer a huge nutritional benefit.

Brightly colored fruits and vegetables in the red family fight inflammation and are linked to improvements in heart disease risk factors. This group includes produce with orange, purple, red and burgundy flesh, such as tomatoes, red and orange peppers, carrots, peaches, plums, and berries.

Carotenoids are a class of compounds synthesized from the yellow, orange and red pigments of fruits and vegetables. This includes vitamin A and all its varied compound forms: beta-carotene, lycopene, lutein and zeaxanthin. All of these have substantiated positive effects, plus antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits within the body.

Aid your intake of healthy fats

Add a small handful of mixed raw or roasted seeds like pumpkin, sesame, sunflower and ground flax or chia to boost your daily intake of good fats. Using various oils in your dressings, or slicing a quarter avo into the salad will also give you a boost. These foods also help the body to absorb all of the protective compounds, phytochemicals, and lutein, and will help you feel fuller for longer.

Build strong bones

Low vitamin K levels have been linked with low bone mineral density in women. For healthy bone growth, a recommended full daily serving can be found in just 1 cup of watercress, or spinach.

Improves skin tone

The high levels of water found in salad veggies improves hydration in our bodies, which is necessary for youthful skin tone and many basic bodily functions.

 

It is important to remember that the many health benefits of adding a salad to your daily diet can be quickly counteracted with the addition of commercially produced additives, in particular, salad dressings. Rather add healthy dressings to your salad, using olive oil, herbs and lemon or vinegar.

Check out Famous Bean’s healthy salad menu here