Think that salad your about to eat is healthy? Ah, ah, ah… not so fast. That fresh looking delectable salad could be what’s causing your growing waistline! But you say, “What? How on earth could a salad be unhealthy? I always thought that was the best item on the menu.”
It’s not the salad and fresh veggies that makes it a calorie bomb it’s all the extras plopped on top. I’m talking croutons, wonton strips, nuts (too many that is), cranberries, cheese, and the worst offender of them all the dressing! These ingredients are what take an innocent 150 calorie salad to a whopping 1,000 calories.
So how can you tell these sneaky suspects from the rest? What’s a fool-proof plan for avoiding these restaurant pitfalls? The answer is toppings in moderation.
Here are 6 easy steps to remember next time you order a salad when you’re out:
1. Always order dressing on the side. Dressings can have upwards of 200-300 calories per 2 tbsp’s! A great rule of thumb is to use only half of what they give you.
2. Ask for no crunchies or if you must on the side (wonton strips, croutons, nuts, etc.)
3. Skip the cheese if you can
4. Order the small version or plan on taking some home (if you skipped putting dressing on it initially you can put half away right away without dressing warping it).
5. Watch the protein serving size. Crumbled bacon especially is deceiving. Do you know how many strips they crumbled on your salad? How big is that steak diced into pieces? Safe bet is to take half home so you’re not tempted to indulge in meat overload.
Here’s an excellent Men’s Health article on “Eat This Not That” salad offenders: