Salads are the way to go if you’re looking to lose weight and/or eat healthier on a budget. You can put pretty much anything you want on your salads, but you’ll want to choose your ingredients wisely if your goal is weight loss. Here are 6 ingredients you’ll want to steer clear of, and some suggestions for replacing them with healthier, frugal options:
You probably know this, but you’re ruining the health factor of your salad if you top it with a ton of ranch, blue cheese or caesar dressing. Instead, try lighter vinaigrettes, just olive oil and balsamic vinegar or be frugal and make your own.
A little bit of low fat cheese, like feta or mozzarella isn’t too bad for you, but topping your salad with highly processed or ultra-creamy cheese will cause the calorie count to skyrocket.
Glazed and Sugared Nuts:
Plain nuts are great in salads and give you a great protein boost. However, if you’re choosing nuts that are glazed in sugar, you’re not doing yourself any favors. Just stick to dry-roasted or raw nuts.
These add a great crunch to your salad, but unfortunately also add fat and refined carbs. Instead, if you need the crunch factor, make your own croutons out of slightly-stale whole wheat bread.
It may seem healthy to throw some dried fruit on a salad, but that dried fruit has tons of sugar. You can create a healthier (and probably cheaper) salad by using fresh, seasonal fruits like strawberries, blueberries or apple slices.
Instead of topping salads with high sodium deli meats like ham or salami, use leftover chicken, beans or lentils to get protein in your salad.