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What Are You Bringing to the Cookout?

As Memorial Day weekend marks the unofficial start of summer, it’s time for sun, fun, and of course, plenty of cookouts. While these gatherings are a staple of summer enjoyment, they often come with tempting dishes that might derail our health goals. But fear not—embracing our food traditions doesn’t mean we have to compromise on health. It’s all about making smart, mindful modifications.

Healthy Twists on Traditional Favorites

Our cookouts are rich in flavor, and with a few tweaks, they can be just as rich in health benefits. For example, reducing the amount of salt in our recipes and opting for fresh herbs and spices can transform a meal without losing its soulful taste. Consider grilling vegetables alongside the usual meats to add color and nutrients to your plate without skimping on taste.

Mindful Eating at Gatherings

It’s easy to overindulge when faced with a buffet of delicious options. However, being mindful of what and how much we eat can make a significant difference. Try using smaller plates to naturally reduce portion sizes, and listen to your hunger cues—eat when you’re hungry and stop when you’re full. Sharing meals with loved ones also offers a chance to slow down and enjoy your food more deeply, turning eating into a more intentional and satisfying experience.

Staying Hydrated the Healthy Way

With the heat turning up, staying hydrated is crucial. Instead of sugary drinks, why not infuse water with slices of fruits or herbs for a refreshing and healthy alternative? This not only helps in reducing the intake of added sugars but also keeps you hydrated in a flavorful way.

Get Active with Fun and Games

After eating, instead of sitting around, engage in some fun physical activities. Whether it’s a friendly game of frisbee, volleyball, or a group dance, moving around not only aids digestion but also keeps everyone active and engaged.

Dish Diva Erin’s Healthy Cookout Recipes

To give you a jumpstart on healthier cookout options, our very own Dish Diva, Erin Taylor, has whipped up some delightful dishes that promise to be crowd-pleasers without the guilt. From zesty grilled vegetables to innovative low-sodium marinades, her creations are designed to keep your health in check while satisfying your taste buds.

Check out Erin’s cooking demonstrations and download these fun recipes to try at your next cookout by visiting THIS LINK.

A Program That Supports Your Lifestyle

If you’re looking to maintain or kick-start healthier eating habits, our CYL2 (Change Your Lifestyle. Change Your Life.) program might be just what you need. It’s designed to help integrate healthy habits into your daily life, and it’s available at no cost to qualifying individuals. Discover more and see if you qualify by visiting our program page