The Health Benefits of…Salad Dressing?

Wait a minute.  Salad dressing?  Thinking that was something that had to be kicked to the curb when you did your Paleo kitchen clean out?

Not necessarily.

Certainly, many of the commercially prepared varieties are not something we’d want to consume; often laden with corn syrup, all sorts of unhealthy oils ranging from partially hydrogenated to soy, vinegar and synthetic stabilizers, amongst other culprits.

However, if we’re talking about good old extra virgin olive oil tossed with some citrus, mixed with fresh herbs or even pureed with seasonal fruit, (read: Paleo Friendly!), this permutation of a dressing is not only Paleo, it’s got health benefits.

We know that good fat is good for us, and one of the reasons it is, is that it helps our ability to absorb many fat soluble vitamins.

A recent study conducted at Purdue University, based off of a 2004 study that determined nutritional benefits from salad were more available for intestinal absorption when mixed with a full-fat instead of a low-fat dressing, looked into what kind of fat-based dressings resulted in similar health benefits.

“The study, published early online in the journal Molecular Nutrition & Food Research, found that monounsaturated fat-rich dressings (like those made olive oil) required the least amount of fat to get the most carotenoid absorption, while saturated fat and polyunsaturated fat dressings required higher amounts of fat to get the same benefit.”

Does this mean you should reduce the amount of olive oil you’re using?  Not in my interpretation.  Rather, view it as nothing more than another reason to feel healthy and happy that you’re already using olive oil in lieu of some other, not so healthy fats, that you might’ve used back in the day, before you found Paleo, including dairy-based dressings or those with man made oils.

Click here for my recipe for a Sassy Summer Salad Dressing!