Here's How to Eat Healthy During the Summer!

Spinneys nutritionist Freda Molamphy gives us some tips on how to keep your diet in check despite the heat
Thursday , 18 August 2016
Here's How to Eat Healthy During the Summer!

Make sure you stay hydrated, especially when temperatures are reaching 50 Celsius!

It’s important you try to balance fluid intake with fluid loss by drinking lots of water throughout the day. Maintaining the correct fluid balance is essential for blood circulation and to maintain body temperature. Try not to let yourself become thirsty as this is actually an indication you’re already dehydrated.

If you’re working out, drink before, during and after. If you’re exercising outdoors for longer periods like cycling or running, then be sure to stay hydrated the day before, and during your activity drink a mixture of water and re-hydration drinks.

All fluids count as part of your daily intake. Especially good are vegetable and fruit juices diluted with water 50% -50%. This allows them to be absorbed more effectively and they contribute both fluid and valuable electrolytes such as potassium.

Foods also contribute to fluid so when temperatures are soaring, increase intakes of high water–containing foods such as cucumber, celery, iceberg lettuce, spinach, tomatoes, peppers, watermelon, berries and lemon.

Learn how to make some quick and easy breakfast ideas for when you’re on-the-go.

Smoothies are quick, easy and great when you’re in a rush. Whiz up your favourite combination of plain yogurt, milk, fruit and a few ice cubes. I like to add a scoop of protein powder and instead of milk, I use almond milk.

Eggs are quick to make and a great source of protein and healthy fats. Have them poached, scrambled or in an omelette with some wholegrain bread. My favourite is scrambled eggs with some slivers of smoked salmon or mackerel. The fish adds valuable Omega 3 fats to the diet.

If you’re in a rush in the morning, a low-sugar granola or home-made muesli with some berries and Greek Yogurt is perfect. If you have time you can make your own muesli and store it on an airtight container for quick breakfasts or snacks.

Another option would be toasted rye or pumpernickel bagel with pure nut butter, avocado or a little cream cheese. You can even try a combination of almond butter and banana.

And don’t forget the kids…

Sometimes it can be difficult to motivate a child to eat a more balanced breakfast, so thinking outside of the cereal box can help. Here are a few ideas:

- Toasted Cheese Fingers: whole-meal bread, melted cheese and a little relish

- Small cup of Greek yogurt, chopped fruit pieces and a crunchy low-sugar granola

- Mini quiches with cherry tomatoes: make a tray in advance and freeze it

- Hummus with crudités and fresh bread fingers

- 1 or 2 slices of turkey wrapped around a wedge of avocado and a small glass of milk

- Home-made vegetable muffins or scones with mushroom, spinach, carrot, courgette, and a small orange or clementine.

Give your juices a healthy update.

Try having half juice and half sparkling or still water as a lower sugar alternative that’ll still gives you half the benefits of the juice. Home-made iced tea or iced mint tea (without sugar of course) is a great refreshing summer drink when served with lots of ice and fresh lemons. You can also have a glass of sparkling water with a dash of Elderflower cordial.

Always make sure you have good snacks and drinks in the fridge.

Chilled Watermelon: great in a refreshing salad with feta and mint or just on its own as a snack. Plus, it’s full on antioxidants.

Cucumber: with its fibre and high water content, cucumber is the perfect ingredient for summer. Have it chilled with dips, sliced in salads, or alone as a snack.

Tomatoes: make a chilled Gazpacho soup and serve with lots of ice.

Fish: when the temperatures soar and you don’t feel like eating, choose a lighter protein option. Fish and seafood make a great addition to a salad. You can serve simply grilled with a wedge of lemon and fresh herbs.

Coconut Water: when you need a little more than just plain water, opt for chilled coconut water and benefit from its electrolytes and minerals. The sugar in coconut water also help recovery after exercise.

Eat foods that are high in Vitamin D

As Vitamin D is a fat soluble vitamin, its best sources will be foods that contain some amount of natural fats. The best source is actually oily fish such as salmon, mackerel, sardines, fresh tuna and trout. Canned and smoked salmon, mackerel and canned sardines are also good sources.

Beef liver and egg yolks also contain vitamin D as does cheese and especially ricotta. Full fat cow’s milk and full fat yogurts also have some Vitamin D and a lot of cow’s milk is fortified with Vitamin D. 

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