Saturday, July 3, 2010
4th of July Healthy Picnic Staples
Follow these health-minded tips when planning your weekend festivities:
• Grocery Shopping: Take a minute to really think about what is most important to you before you go to the grocery store. Decide on your weekend meal plan and write your grocery list accordingly before you shop. This helps you save money and time at the grocery store and you will feel good about the choices you make and prepare accordingly.
• Water: Pack plenty of water. Don't waste your money on soft drinks, juices, or non-nutritive beverages. Use juice boxes containing 100% juice as an occasional treat for kids, but even the most healthful juices contribute excess calories. Teach kids to drink water now, and they will do this forever. Freeze your water bottles or partially freeze them. Take individual Propel packets with you to add to water bottles to add some flavor and provide electrolytes when outside in the heat all day.
• Fruit: Natures candy is fruit. Pack fruit whole if you can, so you have less to clean up later, or slice it up and put it in plastic containers. You can also freeze grapes and blueberries for a yummy snack. It is virtually impossible to compromise your health by eating too much fruit or too many vegetables; so, pack extra. You will eat them!
• The menu: Consider foods that don't spoil as quickly as "main" dishes. Bagels, Sandwich thins, High fiber crackers, Individual packets of humus and peanut butter, dry turkey sandwiches (Add the condiments later), and vinegar-based pasta and black bean salads.
• High-fiber snacks: Portion your own high-fiber snacks into snack baggies. This way you can control your snack foods. Look for 3g of fiber or more per serving for snack food items. As soon as you open crackers, nuts, pretzels, cereals, dried fruit, popcorn, and trail mixes, separate them into serving portions and store the item in individual baggies. This way you are less likely to overeat from the larger container.
Have a Happy and Healthy 4th of July!