The salad is one of the best dishes for a healthy body. The intake of salad gives a number of a solution to any diseases. However, the problem lies in understanding as to what is the best time to eat. Many people say that the best time to eat salad is before a meal but some say that salads should be taken after the meal. To understand this point, let us first look into its meaning, importance and then to the topic.
What Is Salad…?
According to Merriam-Webster dictionary, salad constitutes any of various cold dishes, such as raw greens often combined with other vegetables and toppings and served especially with dressing; and small pieces of food (such as pasta, meat, fruit, or vegetables) usually mixed with a dressing (such as mayonnaise) or set in gelatin etc. In common parlance, salad is a type of dish which comprises of a mixture of small pieces of food like fruits, vegetables etc.
Importance of Salad
Salad holds immense importance in the life of individuals as it is both tasty and beneficial for the well-being of an individual. Some of its benefits include:
- The salad is a boon for people suffering from the problem of weak eyesight. It sharpens the eyesight largely.
- The intake of a good amount of Vitamin K in the salad makes bones strong.
- It is quite helpful in bringing sleep to people having insomnia.
- Salad reduces calorie content in the body largely rendering the person healthy and fit.
- Salads contain a high amount of water in them. Thus, its consumption keeps the body hydrated and improves the skin tone.
- It is a rich source of fiber. Therefore, it solves the problem of cholesterol and constipation and helps in proper digestion.
- Salads are good for increasing antioxidants in the body and thus boosting the immunity of an individual.
When to have Salad during Day?
There are diverse opinions on the question of when to have a salad- before or after the meal and at what time- morning, afternoon, dinner. Let us discuss this issue in detail.
Americans are known to advocate the theory of eating a salad before or during the meal. This is because of the simple reason that if one is hungry and is prepared for the meal, he/she is likely to eat whatever is placed in front of him without thinking about the aftermaths. However, if one takes salad before the meal, then he is likely to eat his main course with caution as his hunger has been reduced to a great extent. This significantly leads to less calorie intake in the body thus leading to weight loss.
In fact, the “Appetite” journal has reported that intake of salad before meal enhances the consumption of vegetables by 23%.
Not only this but also many of the nutritionists consider it better to eat those foods first which digest easily. Since vegetables digest at a faster rate, so the salad should be consumed first. This will actually help in the easier flow of food and prevent the person from any sort of digestion issues.
Countries like Italy and France are known to follow the custom of eating salads after meals. Actually, it is considered by many people that eating salads after the meal helps in digestion. Salads are rich in fiber and other digestive enzymes. Therefore, when they are taken after a meal, they facilitate the digestion process with more ease and thus adds to the well-being of an individual. Moreover, in European culture, it is believed that salad after meal renders white wine sweeter and red wine stronger.
Morning, Afternoon or Evening
Well, this is one of the most debated issues as when to add salad in the menu. Studies suggest that the metabolism rate of the body drops in the afternoon. Intake of fruits at that point of time increases the blood sugar level and thus the digestion process is improved. Moreover, for orderly growth of the body, it is always advisable to have lighter food in the latter half of the day. Taking salad before the meal will decrease the intake of heavy food in the body.
It is a common fact that after dinner people always relax and refrain from doing any sort of physical exercise. No or less physical exercise hampers digestion. So, in order to boost the digestive process, food rich in water and fiber should be consumed. This is very well provided by salad. This is the reason many people consider taking it after the meal. Not only this, but dinner is that time of the day which is associated with the maximum risk of extra calorie intake. This extra calorie can only be reduced with the help of salads.
Well, there is no hard and fast rule relating to the issue of when to have salads. The fact remains that fruits and veggies taken at any time constitute no harm be it- morning, afternoon or evening. It is always a matter of choice and convenience of individuals.