Happy America Day!

I’ve been doing pretty well this past week with exercise and my diet, and I’ve stayed away from desert for a whole week. In light of the fourth of July occurring tomorrow, I thought I would give a few tips on how to make your fourth of July a little healthier. I must say that I’m a sucker when it comes to splurging a little when the holidays come around. I mean, it’s a special occasion that only comes around once a year, so why not give yourself a little treat. However, it is good to try to control yourself and make healthy choices where you can. I have a day of fun on the river planned with family and friends, and I’ve done my best to plan a somewhat healthy menu for us to take along. Here’s what I’ve come up with, let me know if you have any fun suggestions to add!

Bacon, Lettuce, Tomato Sandwiches
A BLT is a classic summer time sandwich that just about everyone loves. I had one for lunch today and it was delicious! Now, the lettuce and tomato are healthy, but the bacon and bread can be another story. I’m at my parents house right now so I just used what they had which was regular bacon and whole wheat bread. If you can though, I would recommend using lean turkey bacon and pita bread or a whole wheat tortilla. You could also just have half a sandwich, which would be perfectly acceptable. Today, I had a whole sandwich with about 3/4 of a tomato, 2 slices of bacon, and several pieces of iceberg lettuce on two slices of whole wheat bread with about 2 tablespoons of mayonnaise. Of course mayonnaise isn’t one of the healthiest things you can eat, so if you can go without it on a BLT, more power to ya! I for one, just cannot resist a little bit, so I try to get by on as little as possible. I had a little corn salad on the side, a family recipe that my mom likes to make in the summer.

Watermelon Salad
Watermelon is another one of those summer time classics that you just can’t resist. I had a craving for some last week and ended up buying a whole watermelon for myself. To say I had enough watermelon to feed a small army would be and understatement. I had about 6 or 7 tupperware containers full of watermelon and I was begging my friends to eat it. I remembered that I had gotten a few emails with some watermelon recipes, so I figured I might as well try one. I chose a watermelon salad with feta cheese, mint, parsley and a few other ingredients. The final product was okay, it would make a nice side for a picnic, but it wasn’t really my favorite. I think I prefer to have watermelon fresh and plain. It’s too delicious to mix other things in with it, so I think I’ll stick to plain watermelon in the future. If you want to try the recipe, click here.

Fruity Deliciousness
Fresh fruit is always a nice treat in the summer. It’s especially fun to make festive fourth of July treats with fresh fruit. I’ve found a few recipes for some fairly healthy fruit treats. There are all kinds of things that you can find on the internet these days. I found a few fun fruit recipes that I wanted to try. Lauren Conrad always has fun things to try on her website, especially when the holidays come around. She posted a few sweet treats that aren’t packed with too much bad stuff. I made the strawberries with cool whip and blueberries tonight for desert and I have her Patriot Pops in the freezer to have at some point tomorrow. You can click here for her fourth of July treats.

Other Tips
Many people like to have cookouts and not so healthy snacks on the fourth of July. We’re planning to do the same tomorrow, but I’ve come up with a few things to try to make things a little healthier. Instead of regular hamburgers and hotdogs, try turkey or veggie burgers and turkey dogs on whole wheat buns. Try to go whole grain or multigrain with any chips that you eat, eat as many raw fruits and veggies as you can, they make great snacks on hot summer days. As for the drinks, try not to go over board on the sugary drinks and regular beer. Try light beer and low sugar drinks instead. I’ve also found a few fun things on Pinterest. I’m currently baking strawberries to have tomorrow, they’re supposed to turn out kind of like a Twizzler. I’d also like to try to make  fruit skewers with bananas, strawberries, and blueberries in the shape of a flag. So, whether you’re planning a big party for friends and family or a small get together for just a few people, try to have fun, but keep in mind that you can make healthier choices along the way.

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