How to Eat Healthier at a Summer Barbecue

By on June 24, 2013

By Meredith Kimelblatt –

Watching your waistline this summer? Barbecues, potlucks and block parties that are typically full of greasy foods and sugary baked goods can make eating unhealthy foods tempting, but don’t worry! Making healthier food choices this summer doesn’t have to be a challenge. Use the following tips to look and feel your best all summer long:

  • Grab your main dish last

Before you reach for that hot dog, load up your plate with side dishes like grilled vegetables, fruit, a green salad or pasta salad with a light vinaigrette or olive oil dressing. If your options are chips or fries, choose nutritious whole grain pita chips or baked sweet potato fries. The more good-for-you foods that are already on your plate, the less likely you’ll be to fill up on unhealthy ones.

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  • Don’t drink your calories

If you’re trying to eat healthier this summer, it’s important to drink healthier, too! Overloading on sugary lemonade and sodas, sweet iced tea or high-calorie beer and cocktails can cause your calorie intake to skyrocket even if you’re eating healthy foods. Stick to icy cold water or a glass or two of red wine for a healthy heart!

  • Be choosy with your toppings

When you’re building your perfect burger, adding on certain toppings can mean adding a lot of extra calories and fat. Be conscious of your topping choices, and stick to fresh veggies like lettuce, tomato, mushrooms and onions rather than greasy bacon and high-fat cheese. Similarly stick to lower-fat spreads and dipping sauces such as mustard or barbecue sauce instead of mayonnaise or sour cream.

  • Avoid carb overload

Have you ever noticed how hamburger and hot dog buns are typically bigger than the actual burgers and dogs they hold? Instead of eating the extra bread just because it’s there, save yourself a few calories and split buns in half or tear off the excess pieces. Or, wrap your burger in a lettuce leaf for a low-carb option.

Making smart food choices will let you feel great and enjoy barbecue season this summer without missing out on good food!


This is a guest post by Meredith K. on behalf of Alexia Foods. For frozen appetizers and sides perfect for your next get together, visit

About Meredith Kimelblatt

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How to Eat Healthier at a Summer Barbecue