Enjoying the Fourth of July the Healthy Way

blogpic_ashleywWe all look forward to celebrating July 4th for different reasons. For many it’s the chance to get together with family and friends and celebrate our nation’s independence with a fireworks show. Of course, who can forget the delicious BBQs that are as much a staple of the holiday as fireworks?

With every holiday, it’s still important to remember healthy eating habits, and seniors need to be even more aware of what they putting in their bodies than their younger counterparts.

If you’re over the age of 50, healthy eating has become even more vital as a means to aging successfully. Increased mental acuteness, resistance to illness and disease, higher energy levels, faster recuperation times, and better management of chronic health problems are just a few of the benefits.

Below are some helpful tips from fooducate.com to keep you on track this holiday weekend:

  • Tip – Eat breakfast! Tons of research shows that a healthy and hearty breakfast leads to smarter food choices throughout the day.

  • Tip – Carry a water bottle with you–staying hydrated is vital.

  • Tip – What’s the 4th of July without chips, crackers and cookies? To help fill up, instead munch on the low-calorie, crunchy foods first, such as baked pita or cracker chips, veggies, and fruit.

  • Tip – Instead of lurking around the food table, sit with your family and friends to enjoy their company, and enjoy a glass of ice-cold water with lemon and lime slices in it.

  • Tip – Studies have shown that people who use a smaller plate eat less, so try finding a smaller plate (or whip one out) at that BBQ.  Fill your smaller plate with a vegetable salad and add a few pieces of grilled chicken on top to round out your meal.  And if you want a hot dog or burger, have one (not two or three)!

  • Tip – Have a slice of watermelon or a fruit salad for a refreshing snack or dessert.

  • Tip – If you opt for traditional strawberry shortcake, swap out pound cake or biscuits for angel food cake, which will cut your calories in half.  This will help you feel satisfied without blowing your calorie budget.

  • Tip – Buy the smaller 9-oz. cups instead of the huge ones– which are also better choices for children. One of the easiest ways to blow your calorie budget is by drinking away your calories.

These easy tips can help keep you healthy by ultimately saving you thousands of unwanted calories along with those extra post-holiday pounds. It’s easier said than done, and no one knows this better than me! Try to remember about any holiday that the most important thing is being surrounded by the people you love; the food is just an added bonus. Have fun this weekend and cheers to the red, white and blue!

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