Summer Countdown: A Month of Healthy Summer Tips
Be Portion Aware
Get Smoother Skin
Peel 1 cucumber and mash; place in a strainer to drain water. Add 1 tablespoon of sugar and mix well. Apply on your face and leave for 10 minutes, then wash with cold water.
Freeze a Classic Cocktail
Do the Math in Margaritaville
Happy Hour Frozen Margarita vs. our Classic, on the Rocks
A regular happy hour frozen margarita is around 12 ounces and weighs in at 410 calories (56% coming from sugar). Our lightened version is 130 calories for a 6-ounce portion with just 14% coming from sugar.
The Cooking Light Margarita:
1 ounce premium or silver tequila, 1/2 ounce Cointreau or other orange-flavored liqueur, 1.5 ounces fresh-squeezed lime juice. Shake with 3/4 cup ice; garnish with lime.
Obtain Water from Pasta and Grains
Learn How to Properly Grill Chicken
Have Kid-Friendly Snacks On Hand
Between meals, most kids get hungry as wolves, and snacking is an important energy bridge. Snacking ought to be healthy, but it still needs to have the crunch, chew, and bright flavors of a real treat. Homemade snacks are great. But sometimes packaged snacks trump everything. We taste-tested our way to the best Kid-Friendly Snacks.
- Best String Cheese Winner: Stringsters Reduced-Fat Mozzarella String Cheese
- Best Cheese Cracker Winner: Cheez-It Baked Snack Crackers Made with Whole Grain
- Best Fruit Puree Winner: Peter Rabbit Organics Pear and Apple Pure Fruit Snack
Don’t Turn into a Tomato, Eat One
Add Zing to Your Guacamole
Instead of a Flour Tortilla, Reach for Corn Tortillas
Team Up with Mother Nature
Stock up on Strawberries
Follow the Rules of Safe Picnic Packing
Transport on ice. Food should be chilled and packed in a cooler with ice or ice packs to keep them cold while they travel.
Heat just before taking. If you're bringing a baked dish, it can be cooked the day before. Reheat just before heading out; wrap the hot container in a towel, and tote carefully to the picnic.
Serve—then stow. Once folks have gone through the line and served themselves, put chilled dishes back in the cooler to keep them cold. Anyone who wants seconds can dig back into the cooler.
Use the two-hour/one-hour rule. Don’t let food sit out for more than two hours (or one hour if it’s a hot day over 90 degrees).
Toss the leftovers. The food will have been handled a lot, and possibly will have been sitting out for a while.
For tasty picnic ideas, see our Portable 4th of July Menu.
Grill Your Veggies
Open the Refrigerator, Close the Freezer
Instead of Tomato Salsa, Opt for Watermelon Salsa
Mix ¼ cup lime juice, 1 tablespoon honey, ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, and ⅛ teaspoon salt in a bowl. Add 3 cups diced seeded melon (use any ripe melon or combination of melons you like), 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro, and 1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and minced. Toss gently to combine; cover and chill until ready to serve.
Prep Kid-Friendly Food in a Flash
Grab a Slice
Cut Back on Hidden Sodium
Soothe Sensitive Skin
Take 2 tablespoons oatmeal and 1 tablespoon baking soda and add water to make paste. Apply to face and all over the skin; rub gently and rinse.
Cook the Kids' Meal at Home
Keep Your Energy Up
Pack a Cooler
For general cooler packing, here are a few tips. Pack raw meats, fish, and produce sealed in plastic bags on the bottom. Next layer in produce, dairy, eggs, and perishable condiments. Save space by packing just what you think you’ll need. And remember to fill the cooler all the way up; the ice will melt faster if it’s full of room-temperature air.
If you store your cooler in a hot garage, bring it inside the night before so you can start with a cooled-off vessel. Use solid ice or reusable gel-filled ice packs on the bottom, pack food, then fill in the gaps with bags of cubed ice. Once it’s packed and ready, stow in the trunk, away from light, and put a blanket or sleeping bag around it for extra insulation.
Healthy Tips for Summer
Beat the heat with our first summer tip: Give Ice Pops a Grown-Up Spin.
A grown-up ice pop, just in time for summer: It’s made from fresh melon, chile, and lime—both juice and rind. A bit of pectin helps keep all the ingredients incorporated evenly; without it, they tend to separate.
Fight Fat with Eggs
New research found that dieters who eat more protein earlier in the day lost more weight, were less hungry, and were more satisfied with their diet. In another study, dieters who ate an egg breakfast instead of a bagel meal lost 65% more weight and belly fat. Try loading morning eggs with veggies like our Eggs Poached in Tomato Sauce with Onions and Peppers.
Give Your Burger a Sun-Dried Summer
2 tablespoons chopped sun-dried tomatoes + 1/4 cup fresh spinach + 1 ounce goat cheese
Don't run out of ways to top your summer burgers. Check out more 100-Calorie Burger Toppings.
Look for Seasonal Sales
Keep the Kitchen Cool
All start with smart supermarket choices—precooked eggs, canned or jarred tuna, rotisserie chickens, and steamed lump crabmeat. All these meals are also ideal for people who live in dorm rooms or other small spaces without full kitchens. For cool ideas see our lineup of No-Cook Meals.
Quench Dry Skin
Mash half of a ripe banana; combine banana with ½ cup of plain yogurt and 1 tablespoon of honey. Apply this pack on face and neck and leave for 10 minutes; rinse thoroughly. This natural pairing helps moisturize dry skin.