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Give Your Summertime a Healthy Makeover

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Lauren Dimitrov, Registered Dietitian, gives us her expertise to set us on the right track for a healthy & enjoyable summertime. 

Summer is a great time to enjoy the warm weather, time outdoors, and maybe even a vacation. Unfortunately, all of the time away from home may result in poor nutrition, lack of hydration, and potential food poisoning. Here are some summertime tips to steer away from the bad and head towards the good.

Increase your fruit and veggies. Many fruits and vegetables add to your water intake while boosting your vitamin and mineral intake at the same time. Watermelon, radishes and zucchini, for example, all contain high amounts of water per serving.

Hydration is Key. Summer heat in combination with increased activity can leave you dehydrated. Don’t wait until you are thirsty to drink water. Start off your day by drinking two glasses of water and keep drinking at each meal. Mild dehydration can be treated with drinking water, but severe symptoms (extreme thirst, weakness, rapid heartbeat or breathing, or delirium) call 911.

Serve seafood. Summer is the perfect time to get the freshest catch from your local grocer. Grill salmon, tuna, lobster, steamer clams, and calamari for a low-calorie, protein-packed meal.

Eat healthy at the beach. Beachside cafes and ice cream stands are bound to put a damper on healthy nutrition. So, be prepared. Pack a cooler with ice, bottled water, sandwiches on whole grain breads, trail mix, pita chips, hummus, yogurt and lots of fruit.  If you do purchase food, avoid high fat burgers and fries and choose fruit popsicles or low-fat frozen yogurt for dessert.  

Protect your food. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 1 in 6 Americans get sick from foodborne diseases each year. Keep coolers clean and use a lot of ice packs. Don’t leave any food sitting out for more than two hours, or one hour if the temperature hits 90 F.

Give your house a summer cleaning. Your home should reflect your healthy way of living. Remove unhealthy foods from your home (so you’re not tempted). While you’re at it, stock your home with fruit, nuts, and other healthy snacks.

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