Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Healthy Eating With Salads

It is a commonly known fact that the body needs at least 2 servings of vegetables and 2 servings of fruits on a daily basis. But not everyone likes to eat fruits or vegetables. Many children as well as adults simply disliked these healthier food options. While some children will slowly learn to like fruits and vegetables as they grow older, others will continue to avoid eating them even as adults. Imagine having to cook for a household with mixed preference, it will be such a daily challenge! I have a friend whom I have known for more than 20 years who simply dislikes vegetable. Whenever we dine out, she will request for any vegetable to be excluded from her food or starts to painstakingly picking out the vegetable from her plate.

Learning to eat vegetable may be easier if one is willing to try out different vegetables, one at a time. Also, eating vegetables as a salad accompanied by a delicious dip or sauce can make the whole eating experience much more pleasant.

I have been lucky as I grew up liking to eat vegetables. Of course as a child, I was a little picky, choosing only safe vegetables like cucumber and cabbages. I was also fortunate that my mom would make a delicious sauce when she tried to get us eating raw vegetables. So here I would like to share this family recipe for a salad that has been a long time family recipe. We usually serve this salad with spicy food like curry, but it is just as delicious when eaten with other main dish.

The ingredients are simple and can be easily found at any of your neighborhood supermarkets.

Salad with Peanut Sauce

You will need: 
Lettuce, cut into 2-inch length 
1 medium sized cucumber, sliced 
1 medium sized tomato, sliced 
2 Hard boiled eggs, sliced 
1 cup of roasted peanuts, grounded 
4 tablespoon of chili sauce 
2 tablespoon of tomato ketchup 
½ cup of hot water

Plate the vegetables and hard boiled eggs in a circular pattern, in this recommended order: Lettuce as the bottom first layer, then the cucumber followed by the sliced tomato and lastly the hard boiled eggs on top. Set aside.

Put the grounded peanuts in a deep bowl. Add the hot water and still well, ensuring that all the clumps are dissolved. Then add in the tomato ketchup and chili sauce. Stir until well combined. If you like more heat in the sauce, add more chili sauce. Drizzle the peanut sauce generously on the salad.

The ingredients in this recipe can be easily substituted and varied to suit your personal preference. For example, use baby cucumbers which are juicer and sweeter. Or add in some sliced boiled potatoes to make this salad a light meal.

To make it more appetizing, try serving the sauce separately as a dip instead.

So I hope you will give this recipe a try and enjoy it like I do.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Great Ideas in Making a Healthy Salad

An apparently healthy salad could be a calorie bomb when covered with high-fat salad dressing. Several preferred salads contain fat and calories. Whether or not you would like to eliminate excess fat or get a lean body, including salad recipes with chicken in your diet will help you reach your primary goal. Salads contain nutritional requirements and antioxidants that your body need. The secret is to ensure you include adequate protein, healthy fats, and complex carbohydrates in your salad so it's still an absolutely well-balanced meal.

Take in Lots of Vegetables

Below 25 calories in every serving, fresh veggies are an ideal add on to any kind of salad. To vary the nutrients it is best to vary your ingredients, you will be able to have a good amount of vitamin c, fiber, folic acid, antioxidants and potassium. Do avoid vegetables which are covered with mayonnaise or having been fried. Your salad recipes with chicken may include peppers, cauliflower, radish, onions, cucumbers, shredded carrots and broccoli.

Include some Brown Rice

Including brown rice in your salad makes you feel full for a longer period of time and it will add a distinct taste to it. Brown rice is high in complex carbohydrates and fiber that will improve your energy levels and gives your body the nutrients that it requires to function properly.

Include Protein Rich Foods

One of the ideal ways to make a tasteful salad which keeps you full for longer hours is to include protein rich foods like chicken breasts, bean, tuna fish, lean steak or shrimp. You may likewise include green soybeans, boiled eggs, baked tofu, or low fat cheese. By including these ingredients, you will be able to convert your salad into a healthy complete meal.

Make Use of Homemade, Raw Dressings

Rather than loading your salad with commercial sauces and dressings in saturated fat, experiment and create your own dressings. You may use additional canola oil, virgin olive oil, flax seed oil, lemon juice, avocado, yogurt or apple cider vinegar. If you prefer a cheese dressing, you may use low fat mayonnaise, crumbled blue cheese, white vinegar, garlic powder and parsley. Create a healthy homemade dressing by making a simple grapefruit and shallot dressing. This dressing provides a good amount of vitamin C and A. You can replace mayo with a yummy avocado-yogurt dressing. This tasteful Greek yogurt is best over crisp vegetables and fruits.

Include Herbs and Spices

Put some new flavors to your salads by putting herbs and spices like parsley, basil, cumin, mustard, flavored vinegar, curry, coriander and others. A tablespoon of chopped green olives or toasted nuts could be added.

A healthy eating habit provides your body the minerals and nutrients it requires to function properly. Including salad recipes with chicken, vegetables and fruits in your diet is the best way to boost your health and keep a balanced weight. If you include a salad a day in your daily meal, you will definitely be doing a good deal.

I'm a health conscious individual. But I always try to follow a very moderate approach to what I eat and drink. As I build the right habits for my diet I make sure that I'm not trying to create a habit that is only good for few month but for a life time instead. I know that success is achieved when I keep doing the right thing. I believe salads and chicken are a great choice especially when combined together.