SummerFoodsEvery season has its favorite foods, and summer is no exception. Summer includes a lot of fun celebrations and events, always with way too much great food. But you definitely want to be mindful of the health factor of what you eat, especially so you can look great in summer outfits that bare more of your skin. Here are some of the calorie bombs you should watch out for, and better indulgences to select instead.

Fried Festival Foods

Fairs and carnivals are favorite ways to spend a summer day. But amid all the games and rides lurks a wealth of dietary tragedies waiting to happen. Deep-fried Twinkies, corn dogs, and funnel cakes are some common festival fare that will definitely derail your diet. Instead, look for a refreshing lemonade (size small, please!) or see if any vendors offer fresh fruit smoothies.

Super Salads

Salad may not seem like a fun treat, but don’t overlook the pleasure that comes from a cool, crisp salad with fresh, in-season vegetables. On a warm summer evening, a salad is both easy to prepare and satisfying. To make it more of a substantial meal, round it out with a grilled chicken breast or piece of fish.

Ice Cream

Ice cream is one of the most classic summer foods. This creamy and refreshing treat is hard to resist on a warm summer evening. But ice cream can be very high in fat and calories, especially if you choose premium varieties. Add in extras like a waffle cone, toppings and an additional scoop, and you could easily be looking at 600 calories or more! If you must indulge, a modest kid’s size cone without mix-ins can be a better bet.

Popsicles

Few things are more enjoyable on a sweltering day than an ice-cold popsicle. And surprisingly, this is one treat that you can say yes to without guilt! Although most commercial popsicles tend to be high in sugar and low in nutrients, it’s easy to find or make healthier alternatives with real fruit and juice. Even the mainstream stuff, though, is still usually low in both calories and fat.

Barbecues

What’s a summer get-together without a few hamburgers and hot dogs on the grill? While these meals are easy and tasty, they’re high in fat and low in health value. Barbecued meat also contains chemicals that may increase your cancer risk. If you know you’ll be at an event like this, see if you can bring along a veggie burger to throw on the grill, or skip it altogether and head straight for the salads.

Fresh Produce

If you’ve ever had a ripe tomato, especially fresh out of the garden, you know that the taste just can’t compare to the off-season stuff you find at the grocery store in January. Some people find it hard to eat enough fresh fruits and vegetables the rest of the year, but a juicy watermelon or ear of corn on the cob makes it easy to say yes to more fruits and veggies.

Iced Tea

An ice-cold, refreshing beverage is perfect on summer’s scorching days. When you get tired of water, a tall glass of iced tea is both delicious and good for you. Tea’s many health benefits, including high antioxidant levels, are still just as present when it’s over ice. Whether you choose black, green or herbal tea, the benefits are the same – just go light on the sugar.

With so many delicious and healthy choices to pick from, your summer diet doesn’t have to be a disaster. Save the decadent treats for special occasions and feel great knowing your alternatives taste so good.