It’s summer and you know what that means; it’s time for salads! But, if you are a person with acid sensitivity you are probably asking yourself, “What can I put on my salads?” My answer is, “Plenty!” The fact is, salads don’t have to be acidic at all. The trick is to build the salad itself with a variety of ingredients that appeal to all of your senses so that you aren’t relying solely on the salad dressing for that burst of flavor.
Are you ready to experiment? Here are some ideas to try:
- Use a variety of greens to add flavor and texture to your salad.
- Toss chopped fresh herbs (cilantro, parsley, basil, oregano, fresh mint, or thyme) into the salad greens for a surprise burst of flavor in every bite.
- Add sliced avocado to salads for a creamy texture.
- Grow your own low-acid salad tomatoes. Ask your local nursery to suggest varieties that grow well in your area or visit local farmer’s markets to sample different types. The small yellow pear tomatoes are a great start, low in acid and very sweet!
- Top your salad with roasted onions, corn, bell peppers, zucchini, mushrooms, or summer squash for extra flavor and color.
- Boost your salad’s flavor and nutrition by adding fruit. Mild apple or pear slices, blueberries, and dried fruit are all tasty choices.
- Throw in some beans, legumes, nuts, or seeds for extra flavor, texture, and added protein and healthy fat.
- Substitute blueberry juice, pear juice, or peach nectar for vinegar in homemade salad dressings.
- Make creamy dressings starting with a base of mild yogurt or blended cottage cheese and adding fresh or dried herbs, garlic, onion powder, chopped fresh mint, lemon zest, and/or salt to taste.
- Try herb-infused oils (available from the ICN Store: www.icnsales.com) or nut oils (almond, walnut, and coconut are sweeter choices) to add flavor and variety to your salads.
- Finally, when in doubt, try using PRELIEF to lower the effect of the acidic foods on your body. But I promise you, once you get used to designing these flavorful, colorful, and nutritious salads, you will never go back to plain old iceberg lettuce and vinaigrette again!
Author: Julie Beyer RD