Salads are a convenient and tasty way to make sure you’re getting enough vegetables in your diet but sometimes, the addition of salad dressing can add fat and empty calories to your otherwise healthy plate.
Luckily, recent studies show that some salad dressing varieties, like types made with vegetable oils, can actually help your body absorb nutrients.
According to Patricia Groziak, M.S., R.D., the senior nutrition manager for Unilever, the presence of dietary fat is important for the body’s absorption of fat-soluble vitamins, such as vitamins A and E.
“A variety of studies have looked at the body’s absorption of these vitamins from common food sources, including raw vegetable salads,” said Groziak. “Research has shown that absorption of carotenoids (vitamin A) and vitamin E is greater when salad vegetables are eaten with full-fat or reduced-fat dressings as compared with a dressing that contained no oil.”
Being married to a Chef, I thought I knew a thing or two about cooking. Boy was I wrong!
To provide a bit of background, I was making risotto for the boys, and discovered I was out of butter. Just as a professional chef would, I usually add a tablespoon of butter at the finish to add a creamy sheen to the risotto, and bind the grains together. Without the butter, I thought to myself, this risotto is going to be inedible. My boys won’t eat it. My husband will laugh at me, etc.
Expectantly, I looked once more into the fridge, hoping a forlorn stick of butter would magically appear. Instead, what caught my eye was a container of low-fat yogurt, that I had purchased because I wanted to make yogurt cheese. For a moment, I wondered, could this work? Desperately, I added two large tablespoons of yogurt to the risotto, and stirred it in. I could not believe my eyes as the yogurt had exactly the same effect as butter, without the fat and cholesterol. I was thrilled, and hoped you would find this discovery equally wonderful.
For other great ways to use low fat yogurt, check out this awesome recipe for seafood salad dressing. With springtime fast approaching, this creamy dressing tossed with seafood, cucumber and celery is a great dinner idea for those lighter meals that we crave in warmer weather.