If you're trying to maintain your shape or lose a few pounds for bikini season, don’t fret, there are many healthy and delicious foods to substitute on the grill this summer. Nutritionist Tanya Zuckerbrot has your guide to healthy summer eating!
Barbecue sauce is one of the most popular condiments out there, but it's not the best thing to slather on your chicken if you're watching your calorie intake.
"One tablespoon of sweet barbecue sauce has 20 calories, 4 carbohydrates and no fiber," Zuckerbrot told FoxNews.com. "Although this doesn’t seem like a lot of calories, who only uses 1 tablespoon of sauce?"
She said eliminating sauces can be an easy way to cut calories.
Lean meats, such as chicken, fish, turkey, and sirloin provides less calories, saturated fat and cholesterol than high fat meats, such as dark meats, hot dogs, and full fat hamburger meat, Zukerbrot pointed out.
"One ounce of lean protein has 45 to 65 less calories and five to eight grams less fat than high fat meat," she added. "Opt for chicken or shrimp skewers instead."
But if your hamburger craving is a must, choose USDA Select or Choice grades of lean beef trimmed of fat, such as ground sirloin.
You would be surprised to learn that dark meat chicken with skin contains more calories and fat than a hot dog and hamburger:
Barbecue chicken (2 pieces): 390 calories, 20 grams of fat
Hot dog: 260 calories, 17 grams of fat
Hamburger: 245 calories, 10 grams of fat
Choose whole grain buns: Whole grain products have more fiber than white bread. Remember fiber is the indigestible part of carbohydrate that provides bulk without any calories. Fiber fills you up without filling you out.
Yes, it's hard to do, but try and skip the potato and pasta salad.
"Traditionally made potato and pasta salad are loaded with calories and fat," Zuckerbrot said."They provide excess calories in the form of carbohydrate without any fiber, which may cause drops in blood sugar, making you feel lethargic and irritable an hour after you eat them."
Potato Salad: 1 cup: 430 calories, 24 grams of fat
When it comes to alcohol, some choices are better than others.
"So, if you want to have a drink in the shade and you are a beer-lover, try low-carb beer," Zuckerbrot said. "Otherwise, chilled white wine is always yummy or vodka and crystal light tastes great, especially when it is blended with some ice."
And finally... don’t forget to hydrate!
"Alcohol plus sun can equal headache and dehydration," Zuckerbrot said. "Therefore, it is important to drink adequate water when the sun is hot, especially if you are drinking alcohol."
Tanya Zuckerbrot, MS, RD is a nutritionist and founder of www.Skinnyandthecity.com. She is also the creator of The F-Factor Diet™, an innovative nutritional program she has used for more than ten years to provide hundreds of her clients with all the tools they need to achieve easy weight loss and maintenance, improved health and well-being. For more information log onto www.FFactorDiet.com
Barbecue foods can be high in saturated fat, low in fiber and packed with calories. This summer, follow these tips to help make your barbecue experience both tasty and healthy.