What Makes a Healthy Salad Dressing Healthy?
This seems like a silly question, but there is so much confusion about fats that this topic deserves some explanation. It’s worth your while to go read this post if you still think you need to keep fat out of your diet.
The number one most common way to turn a fabulously healthy salad into a train wreck for health is to top it with an unhealthy salad dressing. What makes a dressing unhealthy?
- Bad fats
- Fake ingredients
Bad Fats in Store-bought Salad Dressing
To keep it as simple as possible, your salad dressing should include a fat element, a flavor element, and nothing more than real food ingredients.
Non-food Ingredients Can Cause Havoc on Your Long-term Health
These non-food ingredients are commonly found in bottled salad dressings. Sensitive people will feel the effects of these ingredients right away with symptoms such as low energy, brain fog, trouble concentrating, skin flushing/redness, among other neurological effects. People less sensitive to food additives may not feel the effects right after the meal, but are not out of the woods. Consuming these ingredients on a regular basis sets everyone up for health problems down the road.
Here are the most common offenders found in salad dressings today:
A study published in March 2015 reported that, “in mice, relatively low concentrations of two commonly used emulsifiers, namely carboxymethylcellulose and Polysorbate-80, induced low-grade inflammation and obesity/metabolic syndrome in wild-type hosts and promoted robust colitis in mice predisposed to this disorder.
There is a lot of debate about this compound because of its wide range of use such as rust removal, leather treatment, skin care products, and as a food additive it’s commonly found in sodas and in other foods when the manufacturer wants to achieve an acidic flavor. Whether you are a part of the debate or not, the simple fact is that you can achieve an acidic flavor (and real nutrients) simply by adding apple cider vinegar or liquid aminos, which are both naturally fermented to support gut health. Other options are balsamic vinegar, coconut vinegar, and red wine vinegar.
- Sodium Benzoate
This is a food preservative that has been studied with results showing hyperactivity in kids. The levels of this preservative have been reduced in sodas after a study
Healthy Salad Dressing: Fat Element
There are so many options for selecting the fat element for your healthy salad dressing. For thinner salad dressings, use one of the healthy oils such as:
- Olive oil
- Avocado oil