FoodFit

5 Super Ingredients for Summer Salads!

July 26, 2017

Salad ingredients that keep you nourished when the temperatures soar

Nothing says ‘summer’ like a fresh salad. They are light on the tummy, packed with flavour and make for a super healthy summer snack! Leafy greens, fresh fruit and vegetables, with a dash of nuts for that added crunch can all come together to make great summer mini meals.  Here are our 5 favourite ingredients for an unbeatable summer salad.

Spinach


High on nutrition and low on calories, spinach is an essential for any light summer menu. They are an important source of fluids and fibre, and help maintain a healthy digestive system. Spinach is rich in antioxidants, zinc, iron and vitamins A, C, E and K, and is best consumed raw or lightly cooked. Always check for freshness when buying spinach - the fresher the leaves, the higher the nutrients.
 
Beat the heat with these salads:
Chickpea and Spinach Salad with Cumin Dressing and Yogurt Sauce - Food Network
Leafy Pomegranate Salad  - BBC UK
Spinach Salad with Tomatoes, Cucumber and Feta - NY Times

Mango


There are many reasons why the mango is often referred to as the king of fruits. Apart from its delicious taste, Mangoes have a sizeable vitamin content that includes vitamin A, C and B6 as well as minerals like copper, potassium and magnesium to help protect the immune system. They are also one of the best sources of quercetin and beta carotene - powerful antioxidants that help prevent premature ageing, boost eye health and improve overall health.
 
Add a tropical twist with these recipes:
Green Mango Salad - Food & Wine
Hawaiian Fresh Fruit Salad - Woman’s Day
Cucumber Mango Salad - Budget Bytes

Almonds


A sprinkling of almonds can enhance any salad and they are particularly beneficial for weight watchers. Almonds provide high-quality protein along with vitamin E, copper and magnesium. They are a prime source of healthy unsaturated fatty acids that prevent over-eating. Almonds are also rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that protect against heart disease. Sprinkle them raw, toasted, chopped, crushed or sliced for that perfectly nutty crunch.
 
Try these delicious preparations:
Arugula Tomato Almond Salad - My Recipes
Baby Spinach Salad with Dates and Almonds - NY Times Cooking
Almond Avocado Tossed Salad - Taste of Home

Avocado


What makes avocados truly unique is that it is perhaps the only fruit which gives you a significant amount of ‘good fat’ or monounsaturated fatty acids. They contain high levels of a compound called beta-sitosterol which has been proven to help maintain healthy cholesterol levels. They also protect our eyes from the harsh sun by providing certain phytochemicals that reduce ultraviolet damage. Avocados contain fatty acids that help the body absorb more nutrients faster; consuming them regularly can improve overall nutrient intake.
 
Relish these salads:
Avocado Salad with Lime and Cumin Vinaigrette - Delish
Easy Tomato and Avocado Salad - Gimme Delicious
Chicken Breast with Avocado Salad - BBC Good Food

Zucchinis


As a concentrated source of manganese, potassium and vitamin C, zucchini is great for the heart and helps fight immune system disorders like asthma (which tends to worsen during summer). It’s also a great aid for weight loss as it has a low calorie count of just 17 calories per 100 grams. Zucchini’s ninety-five percent water content and high levels of fibre provide energy and make it the perfect antidote for unhealthy cravings.
 
Indulge in these salads:
Shrimp and Zucchini Noodle Summer Salad - Bite of Health Nutrition
Zucchini and Watermelon Feta Salad - Hip Foodie Mom
Couscous Salad with Zucchini and Parsley - Whole Foods Market
 
So go ahead, enjoy flavorful experiments, and eat your way to a healthy summer!

 

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