Did you know that adding a salad every day to your diet has plenty of health benefits? Did you also know that it is one of the easiest ways to include servings of vegetables and fruits?

Perhaps too often salad is seen as a bit bland, just something for picnics and summer days, or ‘diet food’ courtesy of sheer lack of calories. But there is so much more to it than that and you will do yourself a great benefit by adopting a salad diet plan.

Vegetables and fruits are rich in vitamins, minerals, dietary fibre, antioxidants and other nutrients that can help to protect you from sickness and disease.

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A research published in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health found that people who eat seven or more portions of vegetables and fruit a day have a 42% lower risk of dying from any cause, compared to those who eat less than one portion.

It also found that they enjoy a 31% lower risk of heart disease and a 25% lower risk of cancer.

Fascinatingly the study also brought to light that vegetables had a larger protective effect than fruits. That might surprise quite a few people. So your focus should be on consuming more vegetables and a smaller amount of fruit.

salad diet plan_2

A salad is a great idea for meals at any time but it is particularly conveenient for lunch, won’t be heavy in your stomach and won’t trigger any mid afternoon energy crashes.

So here is a delicious salad diet plan for you to tuck into and benefit from.

Start with a green base: choose Romaine lettuce (not iceberg lettuce) or any mixed salad leaves. Next add any 4 or 5 of these vegetables: red or white cabbage, red onions, carrots, cucumber, bell peppers, broccoli, tomatoes, celery, peas, beetroot or radish (choose fresh organic vegetables).

Next add any of these protein: sardines, salmon, turkey, mackerel, chicken, beans, chickpeas or eggs.

Now add one of these healthy fats: olives, avocado, shredded coconut, raw nuts, seeds or egg yolks.

Next add any of these fresh herbs: parsley, coriander, thyme, mint, rosemary or basil.

And now add your dressing. Prepare your own dressing, mix a tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil with freshly squeezed lemon juice or apple cider vinegar, add 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Stir till well blended and pour over the salad and enjoy the delicious salad!

The Bottom Line – A delicious salad is easy to prepare and enjoyable to eat. It is a good way to add more raw organic food with lots of color and flavor to your diet. There is so much variety and, crucially, salad is packed with nutritional benefits.

Keep yourself strong and healthy by including a delicious salad diet plan into your everyday diet.

 

Connect here with WatchFit Expert Anne Awele

References • Oyebode O, Gordon-Dseagu V, Walker A, Mindell J S (2014) Fruit and vegetable consumption and all-cause, cancer and CVD mortality: analysis of Health Survey for England data. Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, doi: 10.1136/jech-2013-203500. [Epub ahead of print

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