What’s in YOUR salad??

Many of my clients know that I had baby #2 (and final baby:))  last year and I have been doing the usual exercise/eating program to lose the baby weight.  With my first child it took me about 13 months, so I figure I have another 5-6 months to go before I lose the excess.

Well, as I am keeping my food journal and behaving like a good girl I went for brunch today at Panera Bread, one of my favorite places to eat lunch.  And like a good girl I ordered a salad.  It wasn’t very big or filling, really, but it tasted delicious.  It had a small amount of steak, gorgonzola cheese, walnuts, lettuce and a sugar-free balsamic vinegrette.  While the salad had nuts and cheese, there wasn’t a large quantity of either so I figured I was adding a little bit of "healthy, natural fat" along with my vegetables and protein.

WELL!!!  Let me tell you…When I went to record my brunch in my food journal I needed to go online to the Panera website to get the nutrition information.  Would you believe my danty salad with very little cheese and nuts, added up to 630 CALORIES and 57 GRAMS OF FAT!!!   That is more fat than I typically have in an entire day!!!!! 

Now, as a professional in the industry I of course realize that many salads are more fattening than a cheeseburger (obviously one of them found their way on my brunch plate today).  But usually that fat comes from things like "crispy chicken" and full-fat ranch with 2 servings of dressing.  I never expected it to come from a healthy, gourmet establishment with a sugar-free salad dressing and a lean, non-fried, meat (and again, not too much meat there either). 

So I decided to find out what all of the other salads there are like and was surprised to find they were all in the 550 calorie/37 g fat range.  Shocking???  Oh yeah…

I also discovered that the "dressing" has over 350 calories alone and 36 g of fat.  Let me repeat; 350 calories/36 g of fat in the "sugar-free" balsamic vinegrette.  (though it is the detailed description that mentions the "sugar-free" part, not the nutrition menu.)   

So here is the good news.  The Asian dressing, sugar-reduced is the best choice at only 110 calories per 2 oz. with only 8 g of fat and the Asian Chicken Sesame Salad is your best choice with 440 calories and 19 g of fat.  As for all of their other salads??  In the words of the GodFather…Take the soup, leave the salad…..

For your Info 

About Kimberly Dawson, M.S.

Leave a Reply