The wide variety of salads offered on the East Ridge menu makes it perfect for celebrating National Salad Month in May every day of the month.

“We are fortunate to always have an extensive variety of fresh fruits and vegetables here in South Florida,” said Miguel Parks, Director of Food and Beverage at East Ridge.

“Our menu offers residents numerous salads in a multitude of colors.”

Research shows that eating colorful salads can boost a person’s daily intake of essential nutrients. Fruits and vegetables also contain many of the vitamins and antioxidants needed with few calories. Salads are key for maintaining good health as the nutrients can help protect against cancer, heart disease, vision loss, hypertension, and other diseases.

National Salad Month helps bring awareness to the importance of many ingredients that can be used in salads.

“Beyond the leafy part of a salad, crisp vegetables, flavorful cheeses, herbs, berries, grains, and fruits make salads exciting and healthy,” he added. “At East Ridge, we also focus on the ingredients used in salad dressings which can tend to add unnecessary fats to salads.”

During the first week of May, for example, salad choices on the East Ridge menu include an Italian-inspired Caprese salad with fresh tomatoes and mozzarella cheese and a squash and orzo salad. The classic carrot and pineapple salad draw on childhood memories, and tomatoes and red onion salad are featured since fresh tomatoes are in season in Florida and are nice and juicy.

Salads are an excellent way to help get five servings of fruits and vegetables a day. Here are a few tips recommended by Parks:

  • Think beyond iceberg lettuce. There are many varieties of lettuce available in the grocery. Spinach is a change of pace. Romaine is nice and crispy and baby field greens are delicious and colorful.
  • Add some protein to your salad including leftover grilled salmon or shredded chicken and a salad can be a filling entree.
  • Include a salad with every meal including breakfast. A salad can be fruit and cottage cheese or a Waldorf salad with apples, pecans, and raisins.
  • Vegetables can be steamed or roasted when combined in salads. They don’t have to be raw to still offer good nutrition.

If you would like to join us for lunch to sample some of the salads on the community’s menu, please call the Marketing Department at 305-256-3564.

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