It’s warming up outside and nothing says summer like a hot July with booming fireworks, family BBQ’s and splashing in the water with the kiddos. July also means we are officially ½ way through the year, which raises the question… Where are you with your resolutions or goals you set for yourself 7 months ago? The good news is you have 6 months left to switch gears and get back on-track with eating better. There are plenty of resources (see below) out there to help, AND it doesn’t have to be a Monday to start! All you need is a little motivation and accountability. Talk to a friend and make it a team effort by making small and simple changes together.
With 4th of July just days away, here are a few tips to eating healthy when you are faced with a table full of chips, dips and desserts.
- Offer to bring the veggie tray or your favorite salad so you are guaranteed to have the foods you love at your disposal.
- Skip the hamburger or hot dog bun and eat your meat ‘protein’ style. Which means your patty or dog is wrapped in lettuce.
- Can’t contain yourself when it comes to the dessert table? Me either. Go for the fruit first. It’s natural and may tame that craving over the 2 inch layer of icing on that oh so delicious chocolate cake. Okay, so fruit isn’t going to cut it? Share a sliver of dessert with someone or allow yourself a ¼ instead of the whole thing.
- Don’t put too much pressure on yourself. It’s okay to have a cheat meal or a cheat day, but make sure you are choosing healthy options otherwise.
A healthy diet is a balance of protein, veggies, fruits, healthy fats, complex carbs and some dairy. Stay away from processed foods and stick to a whole foods based diet. Here is a list of some of my favorite resources/websites:
- 1 lb mixed medley cherry tomatoes
- 1 12 oz. container of marinated fresh mozzarella
- 1 cup fresh basil leaves, gently torn into 1/2-inch pieces
- Red pepper flakes, to taste
- Sea salt, to taste
- Wooden skewers, for serving
- Beginning with a fresh basil leaf, spear the basil, followed by a cherry tomato, another piece of basil, a tomato, a mozzarella piece, and tomato, as desired. Repeat with each additional skewer.
- Sprinkle with red pepper flakes and sea salt. If you use fresh mozzarella that’s not marinated, drizzle a bit of olive oil over the skewers before seasoning with the pepper flakes and salt. A bit of balsamic vinegar would add some great flavor to these as well.
*recipe and photo credit: www.aranthasgourmetbeauty.com
- 4 tablespoons blueberry vinegar
- 1 tablespoon walnut oil
- dashes salt and pepper
- 2/3 cups uncooked red quinoa
- 2 cups fresh blueberries
- 5 ounces blue cheese
- 3 tablespoons fresh mint, chopped
- Before cooking the quinoa, soak it in some cold water to rinse off some of its natural bitterness.
- Mix the dressing together and set aside. Cut the blue cheese, mint and place this in with all the blueberries into a large bowl.
- Once you drain the quinoa, cool it off till it is slightly warm and pour the blueberry vinaigrette and mix that through.
- Let the quinoa cool down some more before mixing in the cheese, blueberries and mint (otherwise your blue cheese will melt.)
*recipe and photo credit: www.food52.com
- 1-8 ounce carton vanilla yogurt
- ¼ teaspoon almond extract or 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- ½ 8 ounce container frozen light whipped dessert topping, thawed
- 3 cups fresh raspberries and/or cut-up fresh strawberries
- 3 cups fresh blueberries
- In a large bowl, stir together yogurt and almond extract or vanilla. Fold in whipped topping.
- To serve, in six 12-ounce glasses or dessert dishes, alternate layers of the berries with layers of the yogurt mixture. Makes 6 servings.
*recipe and photo credit: www.bhg.com
Sonia is a Fountain Hills resident that is on a mission to empower our community to live happy-healthy lives through nutrition and fitness education. Her passions for both show through her love for exercise and helping people in the community make healthier choices. Recently, Sonia partnered with the Town of Fountain Hills to put on the 2014 Wellness & Safety Fair this past April to bring awareness to our town and help promote local fitness and wellness businesses. Sonia is a Certified Nutrition Coach, Amenzone Fitness Trainer and Amenzone Foundation Trainer. If you have any questions for Sonia, please email or call.