Fire up that grill, pull out those American flag swim trunks, and get ready for some fun in the sun! We love this time of year, and not just because of the warmer weather. Its a whole new season for an abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables, making it a good time to shake off those winter eating habits and load up on healthy foods. However, with all the cookouts and outdoor picnics it can be difficult for some to make those healthy choices. Weve got five great tips to keep you on track this Independence Day!
Booze it up better. If youre going to toast with lively and alcoholic libations this 4th of July, choose mixers without added sugars. Use seltzer water (instead of tonic), fresh grated ginger (instead of ginger ale), and frozen berries as ice cubes! Even better, mix with True Lemon or some True Lime Limeade - youll get that delicious citrus flavor without too many added calories or sugar. Here are some great recipe ideas too!
Munch on sun-protecting snacks. Sunscreen isnt the only thing that helps protect you from the harmful rays of the sun. Load up on foods that naturally support your skins defense against UV rays such as bell peppers, leafy greens, and fish thats rich with Omega-3 fats. These types of foods will help your body from the inside-out (and also be a big hit at your cookout)!
Avoid the guilt. If you have some apple pie, dont beat yourself up. Decide to go in for a second hot dog? Enjoy it! Just remember that this is a time for celebration, not for guilt. Just because you indulge a little doesnt mean youre going to ruin your healthy ways! Focus on the good stuff - like how you avoided the hamburger bun, or how you loaded up on twice the amount of veggies (and only a quarter the amount of pie). Staying positive will go a long way, and help you to get back on track after the holiday.
Turn up the music and dance! Youre spending time with friends and family, theres music playing, the sun is shining - why not shake that tail feather? Dancing is a great way to not only burn calories, but help you from getting sleepy after a big meal. So get up out of that chair, and get moving!
Choose a small plate. Research has shown that people who choose to eat off smaller plates eat less without even noticing the difference. Some results showed that 50% fewer calories were consumed by participants, but everyone reported the same level of satisfaction and fullness after the meal. So go small!
Whatever you do this 4th of July, remember to stay hydrated
, take care of those seasonal allergies
before heading out, and most of all: HAVE FUN! Looking for some more tips for staying healthy during your cookout? Try these on for size! [Credit:Rose, Rose. "6 Tips for Not Regretting Your 4th of July BBQ."Summer Tomato.] [Credit: Cattel, Jeff. "How to have the Ultimate Fourth of July."Greatist.]