On Memorial Day weekend, Americans across the country honor the brave men and women who have passed away while serving our country’s armed forces. As we honor those who have fallen in the line of service, it’s also a time where many families and friends come together for an extended weekend filled with summer fun and time off work and school.
No matter how you choose to honor this timeless American holiday, don’t let temptation get the best of your behaviors this weekend. Whether you’re attending a cookout, hitting the beach or taking a short trip, consider these tips for a happy and healthy holiday.
Healthy Tips for Memorial Day Weekend
Grill Whole Foods
Fire up the grill this weekend and load it with healthy whole foods packed with natural flavor. Grill chicken breast, lean cuts of steak, shrimp and scallops, salmon and even turkey burgers. Then load up on veggies like whole ears of corn, bell peppers, asparagus or stuffed onions. Looking for a sweet treat to top off lunch or dinner? Grill pieces of fruit like peaches or pineapple.
Take it Easy on the Condiments
Classic condiments for foods like burgers and hot dogs pack a lot of extra sugar and calories. BBQ sauce, ketchup and creamy salad dressings are just a few examples. Opt for low-sugar and low-calorie options or try cleaner condiments like mustard and zesty salsa.
Me Mindful of Your Alcohol
Even on a holiday weekend, be mindful of your alcohol intake to cut back on extra calories and sugar. Since the temperatures are rising as we head into summer, nix the beer, wine, cocktails and and sangria to sip on flavored ice water and stay hydrated.
Stay Refreshed with a Low-Calorie Popsicle
The sun is blazing! Instead of snacking on heavy smoothies and ice cream cones to keep cool, try a fruity low-calorie Popsicle instead. You can make your own healthy version with various sizes of ice molds and a zero-calorie drink mix like Crystal Light.
Celebrate in an Active Way
Instead of gathering around the grill or kitchen table where food is the focus, spend time with your loved ones with an outdoor activity. Try a neighborhood bike ride, volleyball game or round of kickball. Go on a group hike, toss around the football or create a scavenger hunt.
Contribute a Healthy Snack or Side Dish
Heavy dips with chips, potato salads and pasta dishes are classic get-together foods, but they’re not light options. If you’re watching your calories and opting for leaner foods, contribute your own healthy side or snack. Bring a bowl of fruit, a veggie tray or salsa to accompany whole grain crackers. Try creating a zesty salad or making your own light fruit/veggie spread for dipping.
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Relax, Have Fun and Remember the Reason
Most of all, remember to enjoy your holiday weekend and honor those brave men and women who sacrificed their lives for our country. Instead of focusing on food, focus on your loved ones and enjoy your time off. Have a healthy and happy Memorial Day weekend.