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Fixing 5 Common Summer Diet Mistakes

By DAWN JACKSON BLATNER and IVANNA HAMPTON
Updated 7:44 AM CDT, Mon, Jul 26, 2010

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Mistake 1: Using fat free salad dressing

The Fix: New research suggests that a little fat helps you absorb nutrients. Instead of fat-free go for the reduced-fat versions that have a small dose of healthy fat. You need about 1 tablespoon of reduced-fat dressing for each cup of salad. Buy salad dressing already made or make your own with a special recipe offered below.

 

Mistake 2: Putting meat on the grill without marinating
 

Starting a Summer Diet

Starting a Summer Diet
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Starting a Summer Diet

The Fix: Research suggests that marinating meats for 30-60 minutes helps reduce cancer-causing compounds called HCA’s by more than 80%. The best marinades have three parts: 1) acid (vinegar or citrus), 2) oil and 3) herbs/spices. Buy marinades already made or make your own with a special recipe offered below. 

 

Mistake 3: Snacking on pretzels at a backyard BBQ
 

The Fix: Most pretzels aren't whole grain and are just processed empty calories. Instead keep a bowl of pistachios out for a healthier snack with more fiber, protein and heart-smart unsaturated fats than pretzels. Note: 20 mini-pretzels have the same calories as 25 pistachios.

 

Mistake 4: Drinking mixed frozen drinks to cool off
 

The Fix: A typical margarita sure may seem light & refreshing, but it will weigh you down with at least 500 calories! Instead try a “light michelada”, which is a light beer with fresh lime in a salted rim glass for only 100 calories.

 

Mistake 5: Forgetting light ice cream and the calories
 

The Fix: Even though light ice cream often has less calories and fat than the full-fat versions, regularly eating more than 1/2 cup at a time can sabotage any summer diet. Instead of 1 cup light ice cream, enjoy 1/2 cup summer berries + 1/2 cup light ice cream to save at least 80 calories and 4g fat.

 

Lemon-Flax Salad Vinaigrette

4 tablespoons lemon juice
4 tablespoons red wine vinegar
4 tablespoons flax seed oil
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 clove garlic, minced
Sea salt/black pepper, to taste

Whisk all ingredients together and keep in fridge for up to 1 week.

 

Basic Lemon-Herb Marinade (for 1 lb of meat, poultry, fish or veggies)

1/4 grape seed oil (great grilling oil since it can stand up to the hot heat of a grill)
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
Sea salt/black pepper, to taste

Note: Add 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh herbs such as basil, chives or parsley for an even fresher taste.

First Published: Jul 26, 2010 7:13 AM CDT

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