The word salad brings to mind a healthy and delicious mix of greens and goodies. It’s a staple of healthy eating, especially in the spring and summer months. That said, we’ve known members who see the simple salad as an obligatory side, as well as members who only have eyes for action-packed restaurant salads – salads that aren’t as healthy as you might think.

Truly satisfying salads are more than just lettuce, but portion control doesn’t go out the window just because there’s lettuce on your plate. It’s also important to know the difference between healthy goodies – such as a handful of sliced almonds, little chunks of sweet potato, a dollop of Greek yogurt, or a sprinkling of herbed feta  – and unhealthy ones – such as a thick coat of oily dressing, a mayonnaise-packed slaw, layers of fried chicken, or a mountain of bacon and blue cheese.

Our top 5 tips for a satisfying salad include:

01 Add flavor without adding calories: Adding fresh herbs, such as basil, parsley, mint, cilantro, onions, and chives, makes mixed greens more robust. Finely chop to get flavor throughout.

02 Add crunch without adding calories: Small cubes of carrots, apple, cucumbers, bell pepper, and celery add crunch (as well as a nutrition boost) without adding calories.

03 Choose healthy fats: Mix avocado and lemon juice for a creamy but healthy dressing. Swap yogurt for mayonnaise.

04 Pepper your protein throughout: If you chop up a palm-sized piece of grilled chicken into ¼-inch cubes, you can get chicken in every bite! Alternatively, opt for half a cup of chickpeas or black beans. These easy mix-ins are full of plant-based protein and easy on the budget to boot!

05 Plate the right portions: Use the guide below!

Your Health Advisor can recommend combinations for your taste!

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