Nothing says summer like a barbeque on the 4th of July! I’m looking forward to celebrating Independence Day this afternoon with friends and participating in the classic BBQ tradition, in a healthy way. Below are a few simple tips to help turn any BBQ into a healthy, satisfying and guilt free meal!
1. Go easy on the booze.
Alcohol is one of the biggest triggers for overeating. It’s dehydrating and full of empty calories, particularly the sugary cocktail drinks! I’m planning on drinking a lot of water today to keep hydrated in the heat and will enjoy a glass of wine (probably a light red like Sancerre Rouge) or beer (craft beers like an IPA are my favorite) with my meal. This keeps my appetite in check and helps me avoid dehydration and the pain of a hang over tomorrow.
2. Eat a fresh salad!
At any summer BBQ salad is your very good friend! It’s light, in season and full of fiber and anti-oxidants that are great for your skin and your waist! Look for fresh summer greens like butter leaf lettuce, baby spinach and mix with fresh tomatoes, red onions and anything fresh on hand! Lately I have been tossing in steamed sugar snap peas and pumpkin seeds for a bit of crunch – delicious!! Do not use a cream based or jarred dressing – make your own vinaigrette with olive oil and vinegar.
3. Enjoy your meat and stay away from the bun!
Unless you are lucky enough to find a whole-wheat hamburger or hotdog bun, avoid it altogether. Most packaged burger buns are highly processed, with unhealthy ingredients like corn syrup, white flour and a long list of preservatives. Grill your burger (meat, veggie, tuna etc) or fish and serve with fresh avocado slices, lots of mustard and extra veggies and whole grains like quinoa or sweet potatoes on the side.
4. Have fun!!
The point of taking care of yourself and making healthy choices is to make life more enjoyable, rewarding and FUN! Enjoy your healthy BBQ today and treasure every moment with your family and friends.
Sending love and best wishes for a very Happy, Healthy 4th of July!!