4 Salad Bar Items Making You Fat

Salad fixings on a white surface
I recently purchased a delicious, ready-made salad from Trader Joe’s, only to discover its surprising caloric intake afterwards. It’s unexpected to find out how something seemingly healthy can wreck your weight loss efforts if you aren’t careful.

When you think of a healthy meal choice, a nice green salad probably comes to mind. But if you’re topping your salad with creamy dressing, cheese, croutons, or bacon bits, your seemingly healthy lunch might be more of a diet disaster. Since you can control the toppings you toss in at home, it’s especially important to be choosy about the ingredients in quick-service and restaurant salads, which can easily pack more than 1,000 calories.

Here’s 4 Salad Items Making You Fat:

1. Glazed Nuts
Nuts are healthy fats and a great addition to any salad — that is, until they’re kettle-cooked and glazed with sugar. A lot of companies sell glazed walnuts and pecans, and you can find them sprinkled on an array of salads at restaurants across the country. Are they the worst topping on this list? No, but they’re not that great for you either.

Healthy Alternative: Stick to dry-roasted nuts to save on calories. I like to add sliced organic almonds to my salads, but chopped organic pistachios, pecans, and walnuts are a good addition too.

2. Cheese
Three or four daily servings of low-fat dairy products can boost your body’s fat-burning potential, but studies have shown that organic dairy-rich diets may help weight loss and the body’s ability to burn fat. When some people add cheese to a salad, they really pile it on — and that’s why it’s on this list. But some cheeses are more nutritional than others, and there are healthy ways to add them to your salad.