Healthy Tips for a ‘Happy 4th of July’

americanflagThe 4th of July is a great day to spend with friends and family but with it usually comes a lot of time spent around food. Most 4th of July get-togethers involve a delicious BBQ full of scrumptious foods with high amounts of calories. Although we may not avoid all the eating, we can still have fun and enjoy all these foods without sacrificing all our healthy habits.

Grill Lean Meats: We all love that delicious hamburger, but why not grill a turkey burger instead. Instead of having wings, opt for grilled chicken breasts. Fish such as salmon, mahi mahi, or tilapia make a great grilling option. By grilling these options we are lowering the fat content and decreasing the overall calories we eat!

Use Whole Wheat Buns: Switch from your usual white bread buns that you use for hot dogs and burgers, to whole wheat buns. By switching, you’ll get a higher serving of fiber with your meal and most likely won’t notice the difference.

Choose a Smaller Plate: By choosing a smaller plate we reduce the risk of over filling our plate and our stomach with extra food. In most cases, the bigger your plate the more food we stack on it and eat even if we are not all that hungry.

Load Up on Grilled Veggies: Fill half of your plate up with delicious grilled veggies in order to avoid filling our plate with high fat foods. The extra fiber you’re eating from the veggies will help you fill up and feel full. If you want seconds, fill your plate the same way as the first.

Stay Hydrated: By staying hydrated and drinking plenty of fluids you won’t confuse your thirst for hunger. Avoid drinking too much soda, sweet tea, and beer to quench your thirst. Drink plenty of ice-cold water, infused water with fruits or choose unsweetened iced tea to keep you hydrated!

Don’t Skip Meals: Many people will skip meals throughout the day in order to
“save” calories. This is however a terrible strategy as it will only lead to poor food choices and overeating due to increased hunger. Eat smaller meals throughout the day and then enjoy the BBQ>

Stay Fit and Active on the Fourth!

Although it is a holiday, still remain active by getting in a workout earlier in the day before the BBQ. While at the BBQ, get your friends and family together for a fun game of touch football or round the kids up and play tag, or hide and seek. Maybe turn up the music and get dancing! Whatever it is you prefer doing, just keep moving!

For more tips check out:

6 Ways to Have a Healthier Barbecue

Tips for a Healthy and Happy 4th of July

Prepared by Ricardo Blanco, Student Assistant
Hospitality Dietitian Mindy Diller, MS, RDN, LD 



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