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Diet Diva

Get advice on healthy eating, nutrition, and weight loss from expert dietitian Tara Gidus. 

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What are You Grilling this 4th of July?

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Fireworks.We’re going to the beach for the holiday weekend (I live in Florida) and I am so excited!  My kids are young and love crashing in the waves and playing in the sand. We need a little vacation, so this long weekend is falling at the right time!

Want to avoid feeling sluggish this holiday weekend? Fourth of July BBQs usually tend to include high-fat meats, decadent condiments and side dishes, and heavy desserts. But in the humid weather, why not go for something light and refreshing instead! Eating light will keep you cool, and give you that burst of energy to play with the kids or get into a game of beach volleyball.

When it comes to a main meal, I try to stick to lean meats or veggie options. Grill up some lower-fat meats, like lean beef, chicken sausages, skinless chicken, shrimp, and salmon. 

Create a simple marinade with olive oil, soy sauce, white wine, lemon juice, bay leaf, rosemary, and garlic. It goes well with vegetables or meat for shish kabobs. 

With the grill fired up, make sure to cook some veggies, too! Try grilled zucchini, peppers, asparagus, broccoli, eggplant, and corn! Swap Portobello burgers in place of the meat burgers.

For dessert, take a bite out of delicious watermelon, grilled fruit, or fruit kabobs dipped in yogurt. You can grill pineapple, peaches, and my favorite:  bananas!  Simply put a whole banana on the grill for 5 minutes, flip, and cook for 5 more minutes. Take it off and slice it down the middle and scoop out the caramelized banana right from the peel with a spoon. Either eat it just like that, or spoon it into a dish with a scoop of ice cream and some chocolate chips. Delish! For more grilling banana recipes, check out www.dole.com/bananas.

Eating well during your favorite holidays can be fun and tasty too! Pick a lighter option of your favorite foods and you’ll be set for a fabulous holiday. Happy Fourth of July!  I hope you get to see some fireworks!

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Tags: Cooking Healthy , Healthy Eating , Nutrition

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About the Author


MS, RD, CSSD, LD/N

Tara Gidus is a nationally recognized expert and spokesperson on nutrition and fitness.

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