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Savor Healthy Eating This Summer

Summer is a time for bare feet, swimming at the beach, backyard barbecues and vacation adventures! Kids are out of school and home from college and the leisure days can get you out of your normal routine. Cindy Kleckner, RD, LD, a registered and licensed dietitian at Cooper Fitness Center shares how to brighten up your family’s eating habits and make good nutrition a part of your summer.

Explore the local farmers markets. Take your family on a field trip and enjoy the open air markets. Everyone can pick a new food to try, which gets kids involved in the process and makes them more likely to eat fruits and veggies! When local produce is at its peak, getting your nine servings in a day effortless. You’ll also support your local economy and community.

Enjoy the wide variety of summer fruits and veggies. It’s easy to sink into a vegetable rut. Summer includes a colorful variety that gives your body a nutrient kick! Find seasonal recipes, purchasing tips, and much more from Fruits & Veggies More Matters.

Use the backyard grill to say yes to simple suppers. Cook the whole meal on the grill: meat, seafood and veggies. Combine a few simple ingredients for exceptional flavor. You’ll enjoy easy prep time and real cost savings using a variety of grill baskets or Reynolds Wrap® foil packets.

Downsize your dinnerware by switching from a 12-inch dinner plate to a 10-inch plate can help reduce calorie consumption by 20-22 percent. That can equate to nearly two pounds of weight loss per month, without changing any other aspect of your diet.

Get inspiration for a new recipe from cookbooks but pay more attention to flavors than instructions. Experiment with different herbs and spices. Let your palate embrace a spirit of discovery with bold and unique flavors. Science continues to reveal the promise of many health benefits from the antioxidants in these treasures.

Hydrate often. The Texas summer heat makes you more susceptible to dehydration. Start your day by drinking two glasses of water and keep drinking at each meal, as well as before, during and after workouts. Carry a reusable bottle as a reminder to drink up! For some added flavor squeeze a slice of lemon, lime or orange. For workouts lasting longer than 45 minutes, grab a sport drink to help maintain energy and increase endurance.

Eat healthy on the go. While at the beach or pool steer clear of the concessions by planning ahead. Pack a cooler with ice, bottled water, sandwiches on wholegrain bread, pita chips, hummus, yogurt, nuts, and lots of fruit. As summer months heat up, remember to put your health in center stage and you’ll reap the benefits year round!

For more healthy eating tips from Cindy Kleckner, grab the family for a culinary class with emphasis on healthy cooking at Cooper Fitness Center at Craig Ranch.

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