Summer Salads for Pregnancy
August 28, 2019
Summer is a great time for fresh, healthy produce. For expecting moms, whose nutritional needs include a variety of vitamins and minerals, Summer salads can be a super food for their growing babies and can help satisfy those Summer cravings. In this post we will highlight five delicious salad recipes using some of Summer’s nutritious bounty.
It’s no secret that broccoli packs a punch when it comes to vitamins, but did you know it’s also one of the lowest-calorie veggies? According to the USDA National Nutrient Database, one cup of chopped raw broccoli contains only 91 calories, 0 grams of fat, and just 6 grams of carbs.1 It’s also a terrific source of vitamin C, vitamin A and folate, which are considered essential nutrients for pregnancy health.2
The following recipe is from Healthy Seasonal Recipes and has only 170 calories and 4 grams net carbs per serving. But don’t worry; this isn’t “rabbit food.” This particular recipe features bacon and cheddar — yum!
Healthier Broccoli Salad: https://www.healthyseasonalrecipes.com/healthier-broccoli-cheddar-salad-bacon/
Greek Kale Salad
If you’re craving a salad with a satisfying crunch, look no further than the almighty kale salad. Kale is a nutrient-rich food in the cruciferous vegetable family, the same family as broccoli, cabbage, bok choy and brussel sprouts.1 It is loaded with vitamin K, fiber and flavonoids (compounds found in many fruits and vegetables that may provide important health benefits).4
Kale can be eaten cooked or raw. Some nutritionists warn against eating raw kale more than once or twice a week, as it can be somewhat hard on the digestive system and may suppress thyroid function in some people.3 Check with your doctor if you have concerns about eating kale, or anything else for that matter.
This recipe comes from Gimme Delicious and puts a Greek spin on the traditional kale salad. It features lemon olive oil dressing, grape tomatoes, feta cheese and more.
Greek Kale Salad With Lemon Olive Oil Dressing: https://gimmedelicious.com/2015/03/11/greek-kale-salad-with-lemon-olive-oil-dressing/
Tomato and Cucumber Salad
Cool, crunchy cucumbers and firm, flavorful Summer tomatoes make a classic combination and a super-healthy salad.
Tomatoes are especially nutritious, considering they can provide about 40 percent of your daily recommended intake of vitamin C, as well as supply your body with vitamin A, vitamin K and potassium.5 As for cucumbers, you’d be hard pressed to find another food as good at keeping you hydrated. Cucumbers are 95.2 percent water, which means a 5-ounce serving contains 4.8 ounces or 150 ml of water, which is about 26 percent of your daily recommended intake.6 Cucumbers also contain potassium, fiber and antioxidants.
Here’s a recipe we found on Cooking Light that combines these two amazing foods in a simple, yet utterly delicious way. The peach dressing gives this salad a little extra sweetness, but we think it would be yummy with any type of dressing!
Tomato and Cucumber Salad with Peach Dressing: https://www.cookinglight.com/food/in-season/great-summer-salads?slide=217586
Homemade Chicken Salad
Salad doesn’t have to be full of green stuff to be healthy. The occasional chicken salad can be a great choice for expecting moms who are craving white meat protein but want to avoid high-calorie meals.
Here’s a great recipe for chicken salad from The Organic Kitchen, featuring grapes, cucumbers and pistachios for a variety of textures and flavors to keep your cravings satisfied. Oh, and it’s paleo, Whole 30 and ketogenic compliant!
The Best Homemade Chicken Salad: https://www.theorganickitchen.org/the-best-homemade-chicken-salad/
A quick word of caution on this recipe: Chicken is a good source of protein and can be satisfying to eat, but expecting moms should try to choose unprocessed chicken whenever possible, and ensure the chicken is fully cooked to avoid complications resulting from listeria infection, which may include pre-term labor or fetal death.7 Listeria is a bacteria that may be found in processed meats such as deli meats, hot dogs and yes, processed chicken.
Mediterranean Chickpea Salad
Craving something with a Mediterranean flavor? Chickpea salad is satisfying and nutritious, and can be made ahead without getting soggy.
Chickpeas (garbanzo beans) are part of the legume family and have a slightly nutty taste. They are rich in vitamins and minerals, a good source of fiber and high in protein, which makes them a popular meat replacement for vegans and vegetarians.8
This recipe from Delish incorporates the powerful chickpea with a variety of fresh veggies, and tops it all with a lemon-parsley vinaigrette dressing.
Mediterranean Chickpea Salad: https://www.delish.com/cooking/recipe-ideas/a19885314/mediterranean-chickpea-salad-recipe/