Salad & Oatmeal Diet

Porridge with fresh vegetables and lettuce. Healthy breakfast
Salad and oatmeal for a healthy meal. (Image: Elena_Danileiko/iStock/Getty Images)

When you are trying to eat healthier or lose weight, a salad and oatmeal diet may be appealing because it guides your choices but still leaves your options open. With careful planning, a diet based on salad and oatmeal can be nutritionally adequate. A nutritionist can help you design a meal plan and develop recipes to help you achieve your goals.

On this diet, you might eat salad, oatmeal or both for each meal. A more restrictive salad and oatmeal diet could exclude everything except vegetables and oats, while a more moderate plan might include fruit, salad dressings and other salad components, such as beans, nuts or chicken breast. A sample day on a liberal plan might include a fruit salad with oatmeal for breakfast, oatmeal and a green salad with toasted almonds and dressing for lunch and a dinner consisting of a vegetable salad with chicken breast and a fruit salad with yogurt and oatmeal for dessert.

Nutrition

Fruits, vegetables and oatmeal are good sources of dietary fiber, which lowers your cholesterol, reduces your risk for constipation and helps stabilize your blood sugar levels, according to the Mayo Clinic. Many fruits and vegetables are high in vitamins A and C, potassium and folic acid, and fortified oatmeal is rich in B vitamins and iron, according to the 2010 Dietary Guidelines from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Your diet can be adequate in protein and healthy fats if your salads include seafood, lean proteins, beans and nuts. Oatmeal made with milk or mixed into yogurt can help you get enough calcium.

Weight Control

Individuals who eat more fruits, vegetables and whole grains tend to have lower bodyweight, according to the 2010 Dietary Guidelines from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. A salad and oatmeal diet can help you control your calorie intake and manage your weight because it is in high dietary fiber, which is a filling nutrient. A salad and oatmeal diet is flexible, it does not require special packaged diet products and you can choose foods which you enjoy eating. These are important factors in a successful plan for weight loss, according to the Mayo Clinic.

Considerations

Your salad and oatmeal diet will only help you control your weight if you monitor your portions and avoid empty calories, such as from refined starches in croutons or chow mein noodles. Other high-calorie, unhealthy choices include deli salads prepared with mayonnaise, such as pasta, potato or tuna salad, and fatty toppings, such as bacon bits or full-fat cheese. A salad and oatmeal diet can lead to long-term success in controlling your weight, because it helps you develop sustainable, healthy eating habits.

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