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Best Fast-Food Salads: How to Choose Them

4. Be the Best Dressed

Obviously, dressing is a place where many salads cross the border from healthy to diet disaster. McDaniel suggests asking for a reduced-fat option for your salad, even if the salad you want usually comes with something else.

If you bring your salad home, she recommends mixing about half the dressing with vinegar, to cut calories without skimping on dressing.

“This technique helps to stretch the dressing so each leaf gets a little love,” McDaniel says.

5. Keep Fat in Balance

You don't have to avoid ingredients like avocado, cheese, seeds, or nuts. Some healthy fat goes a long way toward giving salad staying power. But you shouldn’t go crazy with these ingredients, either.

"If you’re ordering salad where heaping spoonsful of these ingredients are being added, stick to just one fat," McDaniel says. For example, if you want avocado, hold the cheese.

6. Go (Darker) Green

Many salads are filled with iceberg or romaine lettuce. You’ll get more nutritional bang for your buck if you go with something greener, such as spinach, arugula, or kale. “The darker the leaf, the more nutritional punch it packs,” McDaniel says.

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Reviewed on July 28, 2014

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