Warm weather is finally here! Many of us find ourselves celebrating the season with cookouts, barbecues, and outdoor parties. Some of the typical foods we see at cookouts can make managing weight during this time a challenge. Fortunately, with a little strategy and planning, you can still enjoy all of those events AND stay on track with your weight loss goals! Here are a few tips to get you started:
Bring a Healthy Dish to Pass
Bringing a healthy dish gives you the assurance that there will be at least one nutritious option available. Other guests often appreciate having a healthy option available as well!
Eat Before You Go
Start your day off with a healthy meal and keep your normal routine throughout the day. By not going into an event hungry, you are less likely to overindulge.
Go for the Greens
Fill up your plate with non-starchy vegetables. Focus on lettuce, spinach, cucumber, or tomato salads instead of the commonly served pasta salads. If potato salad is one of your favorites, try substituting the potatoes with cauliflower for a healthier alternative!
Look for Leans
Lean proteins such as chicken, turkey, fish, shrimp, and steak all taste great on the grill. If hamburgers are on the menu, consider forgoing the bun or using lettuce to create a wrap.
Careful with the Condiments
Instead of barbecue sauce, mustard, ketchup or mayo, get creative! Consider adding flavor using fresh herbs and spices, fresh salsa, non-fat Greek yogurt, mashed avocado, or low-fat cheese.
Staying hydrated is necessary! Opt for ice-cold water, unsweetened tea, or try mixing flavor infusers with seltzer water for a refreshing treat! If you do choose to have alcohol, avoid fruity, frozen cocktails with excessive sugar. Opt for light beer, a small glass of wine, or liquor mixed with diet soda or with seltzer water and a splash of lime.
Focus on being active and spending time with your friends and family away from the picnic table. Go for a walk, bike ride, or round up everyone for a game of kickball!
Sarah Steahr, R.D, LDN
If you think the Medifast program might be right for you, call 1-855-RESULTS or visit www.medifastmn.com to schedule your FREE consultation!