4 Dining Tips for Summer

Ahh… summer. The gorgeous days, the gentle breeze, cookouts and the pool/beach. The summer is, for many, a time to be outside and enjoy the weather, but that doesn’t mean you need to skimp on your health.

In fact, summertime can be a great time to enjoy delicious food while still making smart dining decisions! Don’t believe us? Check out our four tips for your summer dining.

1. Eat more fruits and vegetables

Fruits and vegetables offer a variety of health benefits and contribute to a healthy diet, regardless of season, but with summer serving as the peak time for fresh, seasonal produce, take advantage of the availability!

Most vegetables are naturally low in fat and calories, plus they are important sources of many nutrients, including potassium, dietary fiber, folate (folic acid), vitamin A and vitamin C. Tomatoes, avocados, greens and bell peppers are just a couple of the vegetables worth getting your hands on this summer, while they’re in season!

Most fruits are also naturally low in fat, calories and sodium. Berries, like strawberries, raspberries, blueberries and blackberries are in season over the summer months, but watermelon is also a fixture of the summer fruit scene, offering not only a tasty snack, but one that can help you stay hydrated in the heat.

2. Watch portion sizes

Portion sizes are a big part of summertime eating. Whether at a cookout or snacking by the pool, you will want to have an idea of a proper portion size and stick to it when you’re making your way through the serving line.

As a general guide for managing the BBQ scene, some recommend you stick to about 1 cup (a tennis ball/baseball or clenched fist) for your scoop-able sides (potato, pasta, bean salads), about 3 ounces (a cell phone/your palm) of meat (steak, chicken, fish) and about 1 tablespoon (your thumb) when measuring dressing or spreads.

3. Drink water

If this feels like a little déjà vu to you, you aren’t going crazy. Water consumption is an important health consideration and, for that reason, often finds its way onto lists such as this frequently. Nevertheless, drinking enough water is an essential part of a healthy diet, particularly during the sweltering summer months.

Water can help keep your body temperature normal and can have positive effects on joints, the spinal cord and the general digestive system, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It’s important to replenish fluids when your outside in the heat and water remains the top option. Even when you aren’t staving off dehydration, be sure to carry a water bottle around with you and make sure you keep drinking plenty of water throughout the day.

4. Get active

If you want to feel better and remain healthy through the enjoyable summer months, it can require some effort with your diet, but also your physical activity levels. Working out during the winter months can be difficult because it does seem to take a different breed to do a quick multi-mile run through the snow.

Now with the weather much nicer and more inviting, it is a great time to get out, ride a bike, jog or go for a long walk. Going along with our tip above, it is essential that you drink plenty of water if you plan on working out outside with the summer heat. You may want to consider an early morning or late evening run when it isn’t the peak heat of the day.

Enjoy your healthy summer!

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