Monday, 14 November 2011

Importance of Salads

Raw vegetables provide the fiber you need. It is important that you eat a salad with each meal.

Here is why:

Salads do taste nice. Anyone who has eaten salads knows that it is a great way to mix completely different kinds of foods, textures and flavors in one meal. In salads one can mix green crunchy leaves (spinach, lettuce, cabbage, etc), nuts (almonds, pine nuts, walnuts, etc.), cereals (boiled corn, beans, peas, etc), boiled lentils (black channa, rajmah, etc), herbs (basil, oregano, mint, holy basil, etc), even some proteins like boiled eggs or chicken and toss it with a salad dressing of honey, lemon juice, balsamic vinegar. For those who have a sweet tooth you can also add raisins, apricots, prunes, figs, etc.

The benefits of eating a diet rich in vegetables are many - from lowering cholesterol, controlling sugar levels, aiding in weight loss and fighting cancer to relieving constipation. However, most dietitians still feel that the common man is not eating enough vegetables to get the full benefits.

The question in most people's mind: How much vegetable should one consume in day?

The answer is around 8-9 servings of vegetables and fruits/day. That would mean around 4-5 cups of fruits and vegetables, which is a lot. Most of us tend to eat not more than 1-2 cups/day.

Cucumber Summer Salad

Salads are very filling. Once you add ingredients like potato, pasta, beans, corn or egg, it is a complete meal in itself. Eating a salad besides being very refreshing is also very fulfilling. 

Fruit & Cheese Salad

Salads provide health benefits. High on fiber, salads keep the constipation and diseases away. a bowl of fresh salad has vitamins and minerals due to the all nuts and bright greens. The medicinal properties from fresh herbs keep you rejuvenated. Dry fruits like raisin, apricots prunes, and figs, when added to salads, can help you make your body alkaline, as per ayurvedic science is beneficial for the body.

Fruity Sangria Mushroom Salad

Salads make you feel lighter. Salad is a good replacement to lunch or dinner because it makes them feel bloated, lethargic or plain lazy. Therefore, they can make a great choice by having salads as it would at least keep them awake after eating to conduct the business.

Rajma Salad

Salads are incredibly easy to make. Even an amateur chef can whip up a great salad within minutes!

Include a salad in every meal: These need not be limited to just cucumber and tomatoes. A lot more vegetables like beetroot, radish, methi leaves, spinach, cabbage, broccoli, knol-khol/kohlrabi, turnips, and capsicum/bell pepper can be eaten raw. Pulses and legumes and even some grains can be sprouted and added to the salads (like wheat, methi seeds, moong/mung,channa, etc). To avoid boredom, try out 3 different salads every week. You could even mix fruits and vegetables together to make some exotic combinations.

If you hate spending your time in the kitchen, look up some simple salad recipes. Toss up a good fiber rich meal in seconds and stay healthy.