That salad is just lettuce leaves without the right dressing

cucumber hiding vitamins under his jacketYou’ve ordered the salad, a REAL salad, because you’re weight watching, you decide to go with a low fat / no fat dressing. 

A collection of lettuce leaves, healthy vegetables full of important nutrients, plus NO FAT – you can’t get more healthy than that !

Researchers from Purdue University suggest it’s time to rethink the idea of eating a salad without fat.

It is just lettuce leaves without the fat

The Purdue University team had 29 volunteers over for salads. They mixed and matched a collection of greens, tomatoes and carrots for the participants to enjoy.

The same salad was served with a variety of different salad dressings.

Blood samples were drawn, a little while after the salad feast, to see, just how many of the power packed phytonutrients had made it into the salad eaters.

The team was particularly interested in tracking the levels of the carotenoid family of phytonutrients. The carotenoids include compounds such as lutein, lycopene, beta-carotene and zeaxanthin, these nutrients make you see good, look good and protect you from those dreaded diseases, like cancer and cardiovascular disease.

The big fat truth behind salad dressings

Oops the carotenoids go AWOL, when there is little or no fat, in the dressing. Well that is what happened to these salad munching peeps.

Fat was a pre-requisite for the carotenoids to make it out the lettuce leaves and into the blood stream. This is to be expected, because these compounds are classified as fat soluble vitamins.

The researchers found, the more fat spritzed on the salad, the more carotenoids were absorbed.

Intestingly enough, the type of fat used i.e. saturated, polyunsaturated or monounsaturated was not all that important. So dressing the salad in butter or canola oil, made little difference to carotenoid absorption. The key ingredient needed for the salad dressing was FAT.

A salad without fat has few benefits

Eating plain old lettuce leaves, really doesn’t taste terribly good. Yup, the calorie count is seriously low, but so is the nutrient count, so munching on those lettuce leaves is just giving your mouth something to do.

Neither you, nor your cells end up feeling satisfied, which if you’re not careful…….. can lead to a pig out, with some consequences for your hips and possibly your belly.

A body needs real food

Happy, healthy energized bodies need both calories and nutrients.

If you’re on a mission to CUT calories, cut out the nutrient poor, calorie rich foods, like sweets, cookies and sugar laden cold drinks, rather opt for nutrient dense foods calories.

Aim to make your calories pack a nutrition punch……….. so oil that salad, it’s good for you.

Meal triacylglycerol profile modulates postprandial absorption of carotenoids in humans. Molecular Nutrition & Food Research, (2012) 56 (6): 866 Shellen R. Goltz, Wayne W. Campbell, Chureeporn Chitchumroonchokchai, Mark L. Failla, Mario G. Ferruzzi. 

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Further reading

high fat soccer player beats out low fat player omega 3 oil lubricating joints neuron not hitting the appetite suppression switch
Use peanuts to power gold medal sports performances Lubricate those joints with a daub of fish oil to prevent osteoarthritis Do you tend to keep eating long past the point of fullness ?

The 7 Big Spoons™…. are master switches that turn health on.

balance eicosanoids rein in insulin dial down stress sleep vitamin D microflora think
Balance Eicosanoids Rein in insulin Dial down stress Sleep ! Increase Vit D Culivate microflora Think champion

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