Summer is here and so is the outdoor BBQ season. When going to a BBQ where energy is high and plates are stacked higher, it can be tempting to fall into old habits.
With a little know-how, you’ll find that you can enjoy the flavours of summer while still following your bariatric guidelines. Here are our 10 tips for enjoying summer BBQs without sabotaging your goals.
1. Before the BBQ, eat something small.
Don’t go on an empty stomach as doing so will stop you from making sensible, healthy choices. A light snack of fruit or vegetables will help to curb your appetite.
2. Bring something healthy.
If you’re worried that there won’t be a lot of healthy options at the BBQ to choose from then be the one to bring it. Whether it’s a salad or a side dish, you’ll know you have at least one healthy dish to fall back on. You won’t be worried about finding something you can eat, and other people at the party may be grateful for the healthier option as well.
3. Use small plates.
Grab an appetiser or salad plate to help you portion out your food. You may be surprised to find that you’re fuller than you realised with just small serving sizes. We tend to overeat when the food is in front of us instead of paying attention to that fullness feeling.
4. Go for the leaner proteins
Swap fatty meats for leaner cuts. Chicken skewers let you eat leaner meats in smaller pieces without sacrificing flavour, and they add an element of fun to your meal.
5. Be selective about sides.
Mayonnaise-saturated main dishes like pasta or potato salads are staples of a barbeque. But they also happen to be packed with fat. Instead, look for grilled or fresh vegetables, corn on the cob, bean dishes or green salads with dressings on the side.
6. Be careful of alcohol
Limit your alcohol intake and avoid carbonated drinks such as beer or mixers or sugary drinks as these drinks are high in empty calories. Here’s our recipe to make your own Cranberry Lime Cocktail – it’s definitely one to enjoy all year long!
7. Be creative with your beverages.
Get online to find fun and unconventional recipes for flavoured waters and unsweetened iced teas that can replace sweet teas, lemonades and alcoholic beverages. Here’s one of our mocktail recipe for you to try – just skip the rum!
8. Pass on the dessert.
You can save a lot of calories by passing on dessert—or just choosing some fruit to satisfy your sweet tooth. But if you absolutely must try a dessert, stick with one option and have a small portion—such as a sliver of cake or just one cookie.
9. Fitting in some exercise before the BBQ
Feeling accomplished from your workout will help you stay motivated to make healthier choices. Click here to watch a 30-minute full body burner workout by our Fitness Innovator, Tanya!
Don’t let the food take centre stage. The reason you’re at a barbecue is to spend time with family and friends. Focus on the conversation and the good times rather than the food.
Save this or print it out as a reminder throughout the summer season. Have confidence in yourself to manage your weight loss and say no to self-sabotaging behaviours!
From Your WLSA Dietitians