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Have your healthiest picnic and barbecue season ever!

With Labor Day just around the corner, your schedule is probably getting packed with invitations to picnics and barbecue from friends and family. So, how do you make healthy food choices when there are so many less healthy options at your get-together? The tera’swhey team is here to help! We’ve put together a list of do’s and don’ts that will help you navigate through common picnic problems and barbecue blunder, and a few picnic-perfect recipes to share. It’s time to eat healthy and have a great end of summer.

Entrees

Grilled chicken vs. cheeseburger: Almost every barbecue or picnic has someone mastering the grill, serving up burgers, hot dogs and brats. While these options are not always bad, they can really pack on the calories and leave you feeling over-full.

Eat this: Grilled Chicken with pesto sans bun
Not this: Cheeseburger on a sourdough bun

The grilled chicken is a healthier option and the pesto adds a nice zest! Forget the bun; most are too big and just add unnecessary carbohydrates.

Macaroni vs. pasta salad: Noodle salads are great for outdoor parties, they are easy to make, light and refreshing. They are usually a huge hit for kids too! Bad news is that they are chock full of empty calories.

Eat this: Pasta Salad
Not this: Macaroni

Pasta salad wins this one. Macaroni is delicious, don’t get me wrong, but pasta salad has more ingredients in it that are healthier for you. Although the noodles will typically be the same, the pasta salad can be filled with veggies, nuts, and light dressing, rather than just cheese.

*Craving a new pasta salad? Check out our Whey Good for you Pasta Salad. It’s got our tera’swhey protein in it!

Sides

Corn on the cob vs. fresh or steamed vegetables:  Nothing is more iconic at a picnic than shucking your own corn, shoving corn skewers in both ends and going to town on that delicious vegetable. It’s the butter, salt and other toppings though that usually make this veggie the less healthy option.

Eat this: fresh or steamed vegetables
Not that: corn on the cob

Nothing is more refreshing or healthy than fresh veggies right out of the garden, but if raw veggies aren’t your thing, steaming them is always an option. Steamed vegetables retain their nutritional content . It’s also one of the the easiest and quickest ways to prepare vegetables.

Fruit vs. Jello: This one is tricky. Everyone knows the health benefits of fresh fruit, but there are a lot of natural sugars in fruit that can make you secretly gain weight if you eat too much.

Eat this: we say both!

It’s a tie! Both jello and fruit are great side dishes at any barbecue or picnic. In moderation, they both satisfy a sweet tooth and contain a relatively low amount of calories and sugars. You could even put fresh fruit in jello! Be careful not to go overboard though; a cup of fruit and about ½ cup of jello are the standard serving sizes.

Dessert

Cake vs. ice cream/ice cream sandwich: As hard as it is to just pick one dessert (sorry to everyone with a sweet tooth) some are better for you than others. Cake is a popular at picnics and barbecues, especially if you are celebrating a holiday or a birthday, but it can be messy, hard to walk around with, and not to mention, full of calories. Plus, when is one piece ever enough?

Eat this: ice cream/ice cream sandwich
Not that: cake

Summertime is hot, hot, hot, so why not cool down with a little ice cream? Ice cream can also fall victim to having high calorie, fat, and sugar content, but if you look for the right kind, you can indulge your sweet tooth without packing on the pounds. Frozen yogurt or sherbet are great options since they contain less calories and fat than ice cream.

*Looking for a new ice cream recipe? Try our Fruit Medley Frozen Yogurt Bars or if you’re feeling adventurous, try our refreshing Spinach Frozen Yogurt.


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