Surprisingly Unhealthy Habits

Low-Fat or Fat-Free Salad Dressing

The abundance of low-fat and no-fat products on the market has made it easier to reduce calorie intake. Demand for low-fat dressings and mayonnaise over the past 10 years has grown steadily. One study found that 20 percent of men and 33 percent of women always chose low-calorie over regular salad dressings. However, low-calorie dressings often do not get most of the beneficial nutrients — specifically carotenoids, a natural pigment made by plants — out of salad vegetables and fruits. The absorption of nutrients from vegetables in salad was shown to be higher with full-fat dressing than with reduced-fat or fat-free. A Purdue University study found that olive and canola oil-based dressings were the most effective.

Reviewed by: 
Review Date: 
April 1, 2015

Last Updated:
April 1, 2015