Salads are NOT healthy!

Eat your salad! It’s good for you!

How many times have I heard people yell that at me. Especially people from the gym. I’m talking about the hardcore ones. They are a real breed of champions who pump iron-eat right, on a regular basis. It is not just about keeping fit. It is a way of life.

Well, what can I say. I have news for them. While salads can be terribly healthy, they can be terribly bad for your health as well. It’s all relative. Consider a chicken Caesar salad loaded with salad dressing, croutons, cheese, and breaded fried chicken. This could easily amount to 1000 calories and maybe 50g of fat.. don’t even let me get started on the sodium.  On the other hand, a grilled chicken breast garden salad, a pinch of salt to taste, with fat-free dressing has very possibly only just 400 calories and a dab of fat. Basically it’s all in the dressing. Dressings and toppings make the difference and if you are going to add extra croutons, cheese, bacon, mayonnaise, avocado and high fat nuts, it is just as good as eating a burger and fries. Oh no! This is such bad news for those who have been wondering WHY on earth their salads taste so good. It’s nothing like the boring stuff my neighbour talks about at all, that she prepares at home. Pfft.., she has not had a REAL salad!

No, no, she’s having salad. You’re having burger and fries.

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If that’s the case, how can you actually make sure that your salad is indeed healthy and heart friendly? In order to transform your high fat salad into a healthy salad, without compromising on taste, try using sunflower seeds in place of those high fat nuts, with your dark, leafy greens like arugula, spinach, and fresh herbs. If you really love your nuts and cannot do without them, go for walnuts – they are one of the best-studied nuts, and it’s been shown they contain high amounts of omega-3 fatty acids. Instead of piling on avocado and creamy dressings try mushrooms (that lend a creamy texture), olives and low calorie dressings such as a tablespoon or two of light vinaigrette or salsa, or a tasty vinegar, such as balsamic, along with a little heart-friendly olive oil. If you love creamy dressing, try using less of it by diluting it with vinegar. Or simply use low fat dressings that are labeled as such on the bottle. Other toppings that are wonderfully sweet and add body to the salad without adding inches to your waist include cherry tomatoes, sun-dried tomatoes (my favourite) baby carrots, pomelo, red bell peppers, or artichokes.

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spicy chicken salad

Here is one place that I find I can have a healthy salad without compromising on taste. It is called the salad bar and my favourite salad is the spicy chicken salad. It is light yet tasty, with a lovely sourish vinegar based dressing. The chicken itself is grilled not fried. Top it off with sunflower seeds and it’s almost a perfectly balanced salad that is low in calories and high in the flavour department. Gorgeous!

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The salad bar. Choose your own toppings, but choose wisely! Stay away from the fat laden nuts.

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The mega healthy fruit salad with pomelo topping

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They even do low fat pasta here with lovely sesame topping..

Most half serving’s of salad here are a mere RM7 and a full blown mega salad costs no more than RM12. Your salad plus a big glass of freshly squeezed orange juice will only set you back by approximately RM18. Need I say more?

The Salad Bar
No. 41, Jalan SS21/60
Damansara Utama
47400 Petaling Jaya
Tel : 03 77221742
www.thesaladbar.com.my
thesaladbar@email.com 

Pork Free
Opening times : Mon – Sat 9am – 9pm
Sun and public holidays 11am -6pm

Google Maps

Comments

  1. Good- I’m not a huge salad fan, and now I have an excuse not to eat it :) lol

  2. Now I know my diet plan isn’t working! LOL

  3. Brother B says:

    Salad – All that we know is wrong LOL

  4. Apa ni? Reverse psychology ah? :)

  5. Although the fat content in a Caesar Salad can rival that of a portion of burger and fries, the Caesar Salad is still a healthier option. Salad contains fibre, vitamins, minerals (and other things I can’t remember off the top of my head right now) which burgers and fries don’t. The fibre holds water leaving one feeling full longer compared to eating a meal with just meat because meat is totally digestible, unlike fibre.

    Also, vegetables contain oil soluble vitamins – in order for the body to be able to absorb those oil soluble vitamins, there has to be some fat in the meal when the vegetable is eaten.

    Same with the nuts – the type of fat in the nuts is still healthier than the fat in the meat.

    It’s not just about the calories, it’s about the quality of the source of the calories.

  6. Aiyooh! I have to give up those creamy salad dressing???

  7. what a cool find babe! yeah I’m not a salad person because most salads out there are not healthy!

  8. yikes, 1K calories in caesar salads? i’ve always had a suspicious feeling that thai salads (especially the mango/papaya salads with soft shell crab) are also really calorie-laden…

  9. I eat my salads plain with no dressing, hoho!

  10. The Salad Bar has really changed my mind about salads! I used to HATE them but now I have them almost weekly, if I am around that area. Hubby loves it too! :)

  11. Wait! They got artichokes from the bar? Artichokes are wayyy under-featured in salads locally! I want a whole head to myself!

  12. Never mind lah …… die happy!

  13. hahaha….. I’m really glad to know that!!!! :)
    I’ve noticed when I worked at a sandwich shop. We sell many kinds of salads and I thought ‘wow, this is NOT a sald!’. Chicken, cheese, dressing with oil, nuts, egg… A piece of Steak has less fat sometimes! :)

  14. my salad secret dressing: low fat greek yougut with some drops of olive oil (my father produces the best one with his plants and hands in sicily :)) and mustard in seeds. trust me, you have to try it! maybe with green salad, rocket and apple: so yummy and fresh!

  15. salad is gooooodddd !

  16. Wow, nice article and great pictures though.
    Gonna stop having salads =p

  17. I have to get my friend to read this. That silly fella skips the steak/pasta, but tucks into a large bowl of caesar salad each time!

  18. I am not a big salad fan but you are correct. People don’t realize how fattening salads can be. And it isn’t just salads. People just need to be smart. For example, I love Subway and while it’s great they have low fat options and veggies, people need to be careful. Eating a sub with mayo, bacon, and cheese is as bad as a burger. People just need to know what they are eating!

  19. Good thing I was never a salad person.. haha

  20. I am a crazy lunatic salad person! Bandung/West Java people eat daily fresh raw green vegetable as a side dish with no dressing only a hot & spicy sambal! Unfortunately sunflower sees & walnuts are mostly imported and expensive. I MUST VISIT this Salad bar at Damansara on my visit to KL this April! YAYYY!! Thanks for the post, Ciki!

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