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There are mornings when I struggle to eat right but an egg-white omelette, steel-cut oatmeal or gluten-free granola won’t cut it. I crave something fresh, green and both sweet and savory.
This salad fits all those qualifications and can be made and refrigerated for a day or two. I enjoy it for breakfast and again at dinner. At each meal I add two, high-quality, low-in-saturated fat proteins. Grilled chicken is great as are almonds, fat-free feta, and good quality reduced fat cheddar. It’s wonderful drizzled with lime juice, but low-fat dressings (sweet or savory) are fab, too.
The inspiration for this recipe is a blended drink recipe in Dr. Ridha Arem’s marvelous book, The Thyroid Solution Diet. I discovered last fall as I continued to work on healing my body in the wake of Graves’ disease and the thyroid storm I experienced in late 2013. The book helped me relearn what to eat (whole foods) after a couple of years just eating “to get by” or feeling so zapped by my raging hormones that I’d eat anything.
Good nutrition is vital for all of us, but most especially for those of us with chronic diseases like Graves’ disease and Hashimoto’s. It’s become a cliche that weight fluctuations are a challenge for thyroid patients, yet often there are real problems resulting from hormones, genes, environment, and patterns of behavior that lead us to junk food and fast food. Even though I knew about and practiced eating healthily before I got sick, I learned firsthand that illness can zap your ability to act upon what you know.
I liked the original drink recipe okay but am not a huge fan of green goo. I like texture when I eat, and the salad incorporates both Dr. Arem’s original ingredients plus a couple more of my own.
I hope you’ll try it, tinker with it, and share with me what works for you. Use organic and locally grown produce as much as you can and, most importantly, enjoy!
2-4 cups baby spinach (depending on how “leafy” you want it)
2 cups diced cucumbers
1 stalk celery finely cut
8 strawberries, quartered
1 grapefruit, peeled and sectioned
2-3 cloves minced garlic
1 cup loosely chopped parsley
4 olives (kalamata, green, or both)
Juice of one lime
In a large bowl with a lid, mix everything except lime juice which should be applied only just prior to serving. Reserved juice can be used alone or with another dressing.