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5 Nutrition Hacks for Your Summer Health Goals

person relaxing on beachWith the warmer weather comes changing schedules, time off, vacations, parties, and of course, time in the sun. Many of us welcome all these changes, but for many of us, they can also cause common nutrition pitfalls, such as overeating at parties, divergence from your daily eating schedules, eating out, boredom eating, and staying properly hydrated.

There is also, of course, the age-old debate over which sunscreen is the best and if we need it. We need that vitamin D, right?

Here are 5 tips to keep in mind when embarking on your adventures this summer:

Eat in Season

Eating plant foods in season is the best way to get the most micronutrients and phytonutrients from your produce. The produce will also likely taste a lot better, and because it is more readily available, it will be cheaper.

Some common fruits and vegetables that are in season during the summer months include cherries, avocados and other stone fruits, berries, summer squash, tomatoes, cucumbers, salad greens, watermelon, bell peppers, and French green beans. Utilize in season produce in your summer recipes to get the most micronutrients and phytonutrients out of every meal!

Stay Hydrated

Drinking adequate amounts of water is a common struggle for most people. Not sure how much to drink in a day? A common rule of thumb is to simply divide your weight in half. That is the number of ounces required per day for your body. If exercising, add 20 oz of water to make up for the increased period of sweating.

During times of increased sweating (over a long period, such as a few days), utilize a serving of electrolyte water to replenish vital electrolytes. Fruits and vegetables also have a high water content and can add to your daily requirement of fluid intake. Some of the most hydrating fruits and vegetables include cucumber, romaine lettuce, celery, starfruit, watermelon, strawberries, radishes, grapefruit, peppers, tomatoes, and cantaloupe.

Practice Mindful Eating

At a party and want to eat everything? When indulging, stop when you’re just about full, but not stuffed. Try a little bit of everything, and don’t fill up on just one thing. This way, you won’t feel deprived or stuffed. Did you try a new dish that you love? Ask the host for the recipe, so you can make it at home whenever you’d like!

Plan Ahead at Restaurants

Before embarking on a vacation, check out the restaurants in the area to see which places offer options that you are looking for, health-wise. Going to a party? Offer to bring a dish that you like and are comfortable eating.

Get the Best Mix Of Sunshine While Still Protecting Your Skin

The summer months are a dream for a vitamin D lover! In reality, though, you don’t need to spend all day outside in the sun to get your daily dose of vitamin D. Just 15 minutes of moderate skin exposure is enough for lighter skinned individuals (up to 30 minutes for those with darker skin).

Easy ways to get your 15 minutes include eating lunch outside, taking a short bike ride or walking outside, or sunbathing for a quick 15 minutes. If you’re out in the sun all day, it is best to apply sunscreen. Mineral sunscreens sit on top of your skin (rather than being absorbed) and use zinc and titanium that actually reflect the sun’s rays, protecting you from UV damage.

Many mineral sunscreens are also free from potentially harmful chemicals, and are often better for those with sensitive skin. A brand our LDN Sarah likes is Pipette Mineral Sunscreen – SPF 50.

A Great Time to Relax

Summer is a great time to spend time with family and friends and relax for a while. While it’s ideal to get the most out of your nutrition goals during these months, it’s also important to realize that it’s okay to deviate from your schedule, indulge a little, and just have a good time!

Any health choice you make will benefit you, and one party or vacation won’t ruin your progress. Have a dish that is a summer staple in your household? Share it with us in the comments.

Have a safe and happy summer!

If you would like to know more about how nutrition can affect you and your personal health, schedule a free 10-minute exploratory call with Sarah. You can also book a comprehensive 90-minute health consultation today by calling our Middletown office at (302) 828-0048. We would love to see you!

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