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Digestive Health

Why Some Salads Are Worse Than Burgers and Fries...

Salads are great...they can be meals on their own or tasty side dishes that can complement a meal. Either way, most salads are generally a healthy way of eating a meal without consuming vast amounts of fat-laden calories.

However, there is a growing trend towards ‘fattening’ up the innocent salad with an array of unnecessary ingredients...simply for the glut of it. It’s becoming harder than ever to find a restaurant salad that isn’t bogged down with fried bits of fatty bacon, smothered in cheese or swimming in a creamy dressing.

It’s like saying, “I’m feeling hungry but would prefer a healthy meal...I know, I’ll order a salad. Nothing is healthier than a salad, especially since I’m looking at reducing my daily calorie intake”...and then going to a fast food outlet and ordering their ‘healthy-option salad’ that comes with fried chicken, bacon lardons and enough creamy dressing to sink a ship!

These five tips should help you make a better decision when ordering a salad:

  1. Salads that have a base of dark leafy greens are ideal. They’re usually filled with natural vitamins and antioxidants.
  2. If you can’t grow or harvest it, then it doesn’t belong in a salad. Swop those high-calorie ingredients for greener options.
  3. KISS your other words: Keep It Simple (and) Slim. This means ditching the tortilla chips, lard-prepped beans and bacon and any other add-on that shouldn’t be there in the first place.
  4. If you must, go for vinaigrette instead of a creamy dressing. Ideally, a simple drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar are perfect dressings for almost any salad. Xtend-Life chairman, Warren Matthews has a great salad dressing recipe which you can make yourself. Read more about it by clicking here...
  5. Lastly, don’t forget that fat is good...not all fat is created equal, you body needs it. Don’t focus on the total fat content of the salad because healthy sources of fat like cashews, walnuts and avocados add texture and flavor to a salad without increasing your waistline.

Salads can be fun meals to make and there can be hundreds of different types you can share with your family and friends. If you’re dining out, be sure to keep in mind the above mentioned’ll not only enjoy your meal a lot more, you’ll also stick to your health regime and avoid ingesting excessive calories.


  • “Salad dressing recipe says "100 mis of balamic vinegar, 100 mis soy sauce, 200 mis olive oil". I’m from the US. What is mis? Cups tablespoons etc???? None of my friends knew either.”

    Barbara Weber June 12 2011

  • “What is "MIS" ?.”

    Barbara Weber June 10 2011

  • “@Mystic – No problem at all. I’ll chat to our medical nutritionist Joanna Maggs and ask her to look at possibly putting a blog entry together highlighting the ingredients one should avoid when ordering or making a salad. @Barbara – Could you please elaborate a bit further? I’m not sure what you mean by ’MIS"”

    Xtend-Life Expert June 11 2011

  • “Thank you. That’s what I thought, but was told I didn’t know what I was talking about. Would it be, we’d "all get together". Guess not. "they" kept saying "milliliters".”

    Barbara Weber June 12 2011

  • “Hi Barbara – the recipe on Warren’s Blog uses mls (millilters).”

    Xtend-Life Expert June 12 2011

  • “Love this article Dean, absolutely brilliant and much respect for sharing this vital information with the world. I am curious on the salad ingredients though, I don’t really understand what to stick in there and what to avoid. Really I need an avoid list ;p”

    mystic June 10 2011

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