Fourth of July is synonymous with barbecue, overeating, gaining weight, & food coma. This year, be smart and avoid putting on extra pounds, cholesterol, etc., with a few of these simple tips.
Drink a Glass of Lukewarm Water Before Eating.
This will give you a sense of some fullness, so you won’t eat as much or too fast.
Start With Eating Veggies First.
Eat your salads and veggies first. They are filled with nutrients and fiber that will fill you up, so you won’t gorge on unhealthy foods like meats, chips and fried foods. Veggie kabobs and veggies burgers are good options. They are healthy, delicious and economical.
Reduce Eating Meat & Diversify
Reduce or avoid meat, which is known to increase heart disease and is a known carcinogen, especially when grilled and burnt. Instead, try seafood like shrimp, scallops, and/or fish. They are healthier, leaner, faster & easy to grill with less mess.
Swap Mayo for Vinegar
Swap mayo with brown rice vinegar, apple cider vinegar or even champagne vinegar and whole grain or dijon mustard. Vinegar also increases a feeling of fullness. Add some freshly squeezed orange or lemon juice, sea salt and ground pepper and voila! you have a delicious and healthy cole slaw, cucumber or potato salad, or even pasta salad without any unhealthy or weight gain consequences, and it’s so easy and inexpensive.
Corn is very affordable, easy to prepare, and full of fiber and contains folate, thiamine, phosphorous and vitamin A. Sweet corn is delicious on its own, especially when they are in season. Simply steam them to keep both the nutrients and flavor intact. But if you want to cook or grill them, avoid of dousing it in butter. Brush a bit of organic extra virgin olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper and wrap in aluminum foil to keep all the juices in. You can also add spices, such as paprika, cumin, curry, or chili flakes or your favorite hot sauce for extra flavor and kick.
Go Baked, Not Fried
Try baking chips or fries rather than deep frying. It’s not only a healthier option, but less calories, and so much easier without the oily mess. Toss your favorite potatoes, kale, sweet potatoes, etc., with some olive oil, sea salt and pepper, and throw it in the oven. Also, try substituting salt with a mix of garlic and spices such as curry, cumin, paprika, chili powder, etc.
No Bun Burger
To reduce calories and to avoid processed bleached flour based buns, try eating burgers without buns or wrapped in lettuce. It’s has a fresh, refreshing crunch, and it’s nutritious with hardly any calories. Magic! And instead of processed cheese, use grilled onion and mushroom, and slices of avocado for its buttery and creamy texture and taste. Your body and your pants will thank you.
Eat Fruits First and Then Dessert.
You are likely to eat less cookies, cupcakes, and ice cream when you’ve had a few bites of seasonal strawberries, oranges, or peaches, watermelon, (yummy), etc. They will hydrate your body naturally and give the nutrients your body is starving for, so you can function and survive another holiday out in the sun with fun, rather than fat.
Drink Water or a Hot Beverage Before Drinking Alcohol.
Before drinking your favorite beer or cocktail, drink a glass of lukewarm water or hot tea, and you’ll drink less and have less regrets.
Don’t grow roots in your patio furniture. Get up and play with your kids, dogs, run around, throw frisbees, play volleyball, help out with cooking and cleaning up. Take a stroll in the park, the beach, or around the neighborhood. Moving around will help you with digestion, circulation, and burn calories. You’ll also have more energy and fun, and your family and friends will be amazed that you stood up!
As a Guest…
If you’re a guest, try eating half a meal before you go to a party. You’ll be full enough to avoid stuffing yourself, but able to enjoy some tasty holiday foods. This is a good tip for eating out on any occasion. I do it often. Try it.
These tips can become a habit, not just for holidays, but for everyday eating. You can enjoy the holiday and not have any unhealthy consequences. Now, that’s a real holiday!
Keep Your Pets Safe!
Many pets are lost and injured during the fourth of July holiday due to fireworks. They run away trying escape the loud noise that frighten and traumatize them.
Keep them inside, secure windows and doors and lock them, and put the TV, radio, or music on to distract firework sounds. I’ve seen too many tragic situations as a volunteer at shelters and rescue organizations during this holiday. But simple preventive acts can keep both you and your dogs and pets safe and avoid heartbreak.
also, make sure they have a microchip with updated information and secure collars and clear tags. Stay by them as much as possible to make them feel secure and to stay calm, and avoid giving them human food, and they will be healthy and happy for many years to come.
Happy Fourth of July!