Let's face it; when there are so many tasty treats in the world, it makes dieting a significant challenge! As the summer is nearly over, it is time to get the barbecue out, but because barbecues create such an unhealthy, fatty, albeit tasty, meal, are there any ways for us to do a healthy version of it?
Grilling is a great healthy alternative to a barbecue because you can let all the fats dribble out but also avoid that chargrilled flavor which isn't particularly good for you. But the great thing about grilling is that it gives you the opportunity to get rid of all the fat, the big problem with barbecues is that worry if the inside of the meat is cooked or not, and when you worry about something like the turkey burger internal temp and if it is high enough, it can threaten to derail your barbecue. So if you want to avoid food poisoning, grilling is a particularly healthy alternative. You don't need to get the actual barbecue out, but instead, you can put everything in the oven. This is always a convenient alternative when the weather is terrible!
Pick A Healthy Protein
While a lot of people don't like fat, we have to remember that there are good fats in many types of fish such as salmon and trout. When you pick a healthy protein, it's usually best to go for skinless chicken and other lean meats. Picking the right portions is crucial. If you're going to stay healthy, or you're looking to lose weight, a healthy portion of meat is usually around 3 ounces or the size of a deck of cards. Many people use an outdoor barbecue as an excuse to go all out but if you don't need to pile your plate high, and you are watching what you eat, portions and protein a crucial. Let's not forget, filling up on protein is a great way to reduce the temptation for those carbs.
Picking Healthier Sides
As tasty as those baked beans, macaroni salad, and coleslaw are, they can have a lot of added sugars. If you like those things called that you can go for healthy homemade versions. As well as this, go for something with a lot more colors. Something like a leafy green salad doesn't have to be boring; you can still flavor up these vegetables with lemon juice and various herbs. A colorful bean salad, comprising of various pulses is also a great way to get a healthy dose of fiber.
Pick Healthier Buns
It gives you that extra dose of fiber, as well as various textures. If you're trying to go keto, you can get rid of the bun completely, and try something like an open face burger, where you've got the meats, but an abundance of salad surrounding it. You could also use lettuce as a wrap, especially if you are going for fajitas. If you're looking for an extra bit of health, perhaps going gluten-free will be easier on your stomach!
The great thing about kebabs is that they look wonderful, and you don't even need meat! It's all about how you flavor them. Be sure to cut them into pieces that will cook quickly, and also ensure that you brush them with a healthy oil to stop them sticking. There is no limit to what you can do! From mushrooms, corn, potatoes, avocado, and so on, you can add a rainbow of colors to a standard kebab.
Don't Forget Dessert!
As a barbecue is usually an opportunity to go completely unhealthy, if you want to make the entire experience a healthy one, you still need to pack a punch with that dessert. As lovely as it is to go for all those sugary treats, grilling fruits is a perfect opportunity to get a bit more fiber, as well as flavor, into the mix. Grilling fruit in high heat helps the natural sugars to caramelize, giving you that extra bit of sweetness. Slicing apples, pineapples, or plums, putting them on a skewer and letting them grill is a perfect way to add a dose of sweetness. Get some low-fat natural yogurt, a little bit of honey or agave nectar, and you have a perfectly sweet treat.
You don't need to fall off the wagon if you're going to a barbecue. In fact, if you want to make sure that you don't, having your own is the best way to keep everything healthy. You don't need an abundance of fats, and if you are looking to lose weight, grilling everything, while also watching the sides and desserts you consume is crucial.