The humble and ubiquitous salad has always found a place in Indian kitchens, especially as an accompaniment for main courses. Salads are comparatively easier to whip up, add more flavor to the meal. They can be customized with the ingredients and dressings that you desire. There are several benefits of salad that you can expect with daily consumption. Remember how our mothers and even grannies used to emphasize the benefits of eating salad, particularly healthy vegetables each day? This article will tell you more about the same.
Nutritional Value of Salad
Before we delve into the benefits of eating salad everyday, it is worth talking about the average nutritional profile of the item. While salads may vary across households, an average example will help you get an idea.
Let us consider a tossed salad which has about two cups of dressing:
- Sodium- 176 mg
- Potassium- 353 mg
- Fat-13 g
- Cholesterol-9.3 mg
- Saturated Fat-3.1 g
- Protein- 3.8 g
- Carbohydrates-6.4 g
- Dietary Fibre-2.8 g
You can also scale up the benefits of green salad by integrating various other ingredients including raw vegetables and other healthy items.
10 Best Health Benefits of Salad
Here are the top 10 benefits of salad that you should know more about:
1. Contains Natural Fibre – One of the biggest benefits of salad is that it contains natural fibre that is good for the body. Fibre goes a long way towards lowering bad or LDL cholesterol while also helping control blood sugar levels and weight loss. It also helps in maintaining healthy weight levels while also regularizing bowel movements. Fibre also helps in reducing risks of several types of cancer, such as breast, colorectal, throat, esophagus and mouth cancer.
2. Helps Manage Weight – Another one of the biggest benefits of vegetable salad is proper weight management. Consumption of salad that is rich in fibre will automatically fill you up quickly while helping you absorb fewer calories in general. You will be able to manage your weight more effectively as a result.
3. Integrates Healthy Fats into Your Diet – Veg salad benefits include consumption of healthier fats on a regular basis. You can add in pumpkin, sunflower or sesame seeds along with Chia seeds and flax seeds for healthy fat consumption. You can also experiment with healthy dressing oils for this purpose. You can also put in an avocado into your salad along with raw nuts.
4. Aids Bone Development – Daily salad consumption can go a long way towards enhancing the development of your bones. Lower levels of Vitamin K have often been related to lower mineral density of bones, especially for women. You can include spinach or watercress in your salad for rectifying the situation and boosting bone development.
5. Safeguards the Eyes – Your eyes can get a major boost from daily salad consumption. You can expect healthy carotenoid consumption through red lettuce, carrots, Romaine lettuce and even spinach. They will help improve vision while safeguarding your eyes from harmful free radicals.
6. Boosts Muscle Development – It is not just about muscular development but also performance. Consuming a healthy salad each day will help you enhance overall muscle performance. It will boost mitochondria performance in the cells, helping build muscles and stay more energetic simultaneously.
7. Takes care of heart health – A daily salad will go a long way in helping you maintain a healthy heart! You can expect fibre, folate and other beneficial ingredients that help reduce risks of cardiovascular ailments and strokes.
8. Enhances Skin Health – There are several salad benefits for skin health. You can expect to steadily achieve a youthful and vibrant skin glow with daily consumption. This happens owing to superior hydration levels in the body as a result of salad consumption. You should note the benefits of salad for skin carefully, since they are hard to find elsewhere.
9. Boosts Overall Sleep – A daily salad may help you combat insomnia and sleeping disorders as per several reports. If you add lettuce to your salad, then you benefit from consuming lactucarium which is known to stimulate sleep.
10. Improves Digestion – Another major benefit that you can expect is better digestive powers! Salads keep you feeling full without any bloating or stomach issues. You can easily digest healthy vegetables contained in salads.
Salad Side Effects
It goes without saying that even salads have some side effects since they are customizable. Some people may feel bloated or suffer from gas if they consume excessive raw vegetables in their salad. Some may find it hard to digest a lot of fibre as per studies. There are other risks of not cooking vegetables since germs may latch onto them and lead to severe stomach disorders or upsets.
The Bottom Line
Notwithstanding a few side effects, salads are a great way to introduce healthy nutrients into your daily diet. They come with a plethora of benefits for your body including weight management, better digestion, improved skin health and more. You should definitely try making your own healthy salad as an accompaniment to your daily meals. It may take a little time, but you will definitely witness the benefits.
Is it good to eat a salad every day?
Consuming salad each day is a healthy practice. It will help people fill up their dietary and nutrition gaps. Consuming a salad on a daily basis is always healthy since you will get crucial fibre, nutrients and good fats.
What happens if you eat only salad each day?
If you consume just salad each day, it will contribute towards reducing your blood pressure levels. Higher consumption of plants will lead to blood pressure coming down. However, it is not advisable to consume only salads each day unless advised by the doctor.
Can I eat too much salad?
Yes, you can always end up consuming excessive amounts of salad. Raw vegetables can put pressure on the gut, leading to bloating and digestive issues, especially with regard to absorbing high fibre content.
Can I eat as much salad as I want and still lose weight?
Salad is one of the best options for losing weight. You can prepare a healthy salad by ensuring the addition of fibre, minerals and vitamins. However, it is best to avoid excessive consumption.
Does eating salad make you lose belly fat?
If you add leafy green vegetables to your salad, then you can expect to burn fat while getting enhanced nutrition at the same time. Spinach and lettuce are good options for adding to your salad in this regard.