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mayo - good or bad? (plus a delish cucumber salad recipe!)

Mayo adds a flavor to foods that, in my opinion, you can’t get from anything else.

This classic condiment tends to get a bad rap because 1 tbsp packs 90 calories and 10g of fat. There's no denying that it is pretty much all fat with very little carbs or protein. However, serving for serving, mayo comparable in the number of calories to other oils. But the quality of calories (coming mainly from monounsaturated "good" fat) found in mayonnaise is actually better for you (from a cardiovascular standpoint) than the type of saturated fat found in butter and cheese, for example.

Being lower in saturated fat may not be enough, though. The downside of the monounsaturated fat that’s found in mayo is that it’s high in omega-6 (from vegetable oils), and not omega-3 (the anti-inflammatory fat from olive & canola oils). You can purchase mayo that is made with olive oil, which will improve it’s omega-3 content, but does not change the amount of calories per serving - which is what matters when you’re watching your weight. 

Should I choose light mayo instead? 

Just as “lower sugar” dressings and spreads typically have more fat and/or sodium to make up for lost flavor, “light mayo” usually has added sugar to make up for the taste and mouthfeel that the fat gives the product.

In most cases (like that of bacon...) I’m of the mindset that having a little less of the real thing is better than having more of a more highly-processed alternative. But that's a personal decision, not one that I would force upon any of my clients. It's ultimately up to what works best for your lifestyle.

If you’re an environmentalist you may also be against mayo because those omega-6 vegetable oil blends that manufacturers use  likely include genetically modified ingredients (particularly soybean oil) and encourage poor agriculture practices. However, from a nutritional standpoint, this really makes no difference.

The bottom line: There's no right or wrong when it comes to one's decision of whether or not to use mayonnaise.

If you're using just a bit, it doesn't matter what type you use, as long as you enjoy the taste and texture. But for those who prefer a heftier serving while keeping calories in check, try switching to the lighter version of your favorite brand. Personally, I like the taste that a little bit of mayo adds, so I’ll cut the amount in half and swap with 0% greek yogurt. This is a great way to add volume and reduce calories, and is a perfect hack for the recipe below!

hydrating cucumber salad

Did you know that eating fruits high in water, such as cucumbers, will help you hit your hydration goal?

What you’ll need...⁣⁣

+ 3 english cucumbers, thinly sliced ⁣⁣

+ 1/2 onion (red or yellow), thinly sliced⁣⁣

+ 1tbsp minced fresh dill⁣⁣

+ 1/4 tsp stevia⁣⁣

+ zest of 1/4 lemon⁣⁣

+ 1/2 tsp salt ⁣⁣

+ 1/4 tsp garlic powder ⁣⁣

+ 1tbsp white vinegar⁣⁣

+ 1/2 cup greek yogurt⁣⁣

+ 1tbsp mayo⁣⁣


How to (don't get overwhelmed 😉)...

Mix all ingredients except cucumbers & onions to make the dressing, and then add dressing to veg.⁣

Make this and tag me in the photos of your creation!

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