“The 4th of July is all about friends, family and food,” but does that have to mean you undo all that work to achieve your perfect summer bod? Absolutely not. There are a few easy ways you can stay healthy this happy holiday without denying yourself the simple pleasures of the BBQ season.
The first set of tips comes from the Summer Tomato, a healthy lifestyle site created by self-proclaimed “neuroscience PhDork” Darya Rose.
- Use Small Plates: Using small plates is a discreet way to maintain portion control. It stops your eyes from beating out your stomach during a diet.
- Eat Slowly and Mindfully: This is easy. By eating slowly, your body can easier digest food and alert your brain that you’re full. Make sure to converse and play games at the BBQ; don’t focus on the food, focus on the fun!
- Eat Healthiest Foods First: This way, when you’re full, your tummy is full of more vegetables than cupcakes.
- Skip the Chips, Crackers, and Bread: These simple pick-on foods offer idle hands more than hungry stomachs. Most people munch on these things because they’re there. Focus on the main course; don’t fill up on fillers.
- Keep Desserts Small: You don’t have to avoid the sweets on a diet, just limit them. By eating small cookies or mini cupcakes, you can control your portions instead of cutting a huge piece of cake you then feel obligated to finish.
- Think Before You Drink: “One sugary margarita can have 600-800 calories. That means 3 margaritas is more food than you should be consuming in an entire day.” Yikes! Stick with the usual – beer and wine. You can control your calories AND yourself.
Our second set of tips comes from TIME Magazine and experts Dr. Wayne Anderson and Cristina Rivera.
- Dance: It’s easy, fun, and healthy. Don’t be embarrassed to jump on that dance floor, or make your own.
- Stand: “The potential to burn 120 additional calories a day is possible by simply standing,” so make sure you’re standing to watch the fireworks, catch up with old friends, and munch on some veggies.
- Stroll: Don’t yell into the house to ask for more ketchup, walk around to grab it yourself. Doing simple acts like this, and walking around the yard with a friend instead of sitting at the table, can burn up to 300 calories a day.
For some great ideas for healthy snacks, check out the video below to learn how to make the watermelon sticks and red, white, and blue strawberries.