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Healthy Living
June 27, 2013

Healthy Barbecue Ideas to Celebrate the Fourth of July

What better way to celebrate the Independence Day than cooking out with friends and family? As we wish you plenty of bright sunshine, sweet memories and savory food this upcoming holiday, here are some healthy barbecue ideas to help you celebrate the Fourth of July.

Choosing the main course
While hotdogs and hamburgers may be the go-to grub for grilling, they’re not necessarily the healthiest options. When deciding what type of meat to grill, choose lean cuts of meat and trim all of the fat off before grilling. When cooking chicken, take the skin off and use a low-fat marinade to add flavor. If you do choose to cook hotdogs and hamburgers, consider using turkey burgers and/or turkey hotdogs.

Don’t forget about fish. Fish is a lean and healthy option to traditional grilling food, and when done correctly, can be even more delicious than a hotdog or hamburger. High in omega-3 fatty acids, eating fish can help reduce inflammation and improve your cholesterol count.

Grilling vegetables
Corn-on-the-cob isn’t the only vegetable for grilling. From asparagus to zucchini, there is a wide variety of vegetables that taste great when grilled. Put your vegetables in aluminum foil before grilling, baste with extra-virgin olive oil and sprinkle them with low-sodium spices to help your veggies caramelize and bring out more flavor.

You can even kick it up a notch by making kebabs. Simply choose your favorite cuts of meat and vegetables, place them on a skewer and rotate them on the grill.

Serving side dishes
Instead of preparing pasta salad that is high in calories and carbs, search for garbanzo beans and quinoa recipes to make a savory summer salad. Garbanzo beans and quinoa are high in protein, rich in fiber and full of vitamins; and they can help improve digestive health, facilitate weight loss, lower cholesterol and reduce the risk of both heart disease and diabetes.

Deciding on a dessert
Fruit salad has always been a festive summertime dessert. Combine your favorite fruits into a large bowl and serve with low-fat Greek yogurt on the side. Sugar-free Jello is also a quick, easy and healthy post-meal treat. To add some patriotic flair, serve your guests red and blue Jello with light whipped cream.

Keeping a cooler full of water
While it’s best to have a variety of beverages available for guests to choose from, be sure to keep a cooler full of Absopure ice-cold water bottles for guests to drink on hot summer days. Whether you’re throwing a big bash or a cozy cookout, we carry a variety of water bottle sizes that can meet any need, including our 6.5-ounce Packables, 10-ounce 30 packs, 16.9-ounce and 25-ounce 24 packs. Staying hydrated is just as important as staving off hunger, so make sure to beat the heat by drinking several cups of water if you’re spending Independence Day in the sweltering sunshine.

How do you plan on staying healthy this Fourth of July?