Healthy Picnic Foods for Weight Loss
Interested in healthy picnic food ideas? Read on…
If you think dieting requires staying indoors all the time just to eat your home-cooked meals, think again. The weather is getting increasingly nice and the summer spirit is coming alive. It’s the perfect time to fill up your picnic basket, get outdoors and relax with a pleasant picnic. While the most common foods to take on picnics are notoriously unhealthy, items like burgers, potato chips and cookies, there are a variety of delectable picnic foods that make the experience healthier.
What makes picnics such healthy adventures is the ability to both eat healthy and venture outside for some physical activities, so if you’re thinking about heading outside for a meal with nature, here are the best picnic foods for weight loss.
Two of the most common appetizers for picnics are potato chips and dip, but they are also among the least healthy. For example, one small pack of Lay’s Classic Potato Chips totals 190 calories and 1.5 grams of saturated fat. Instead, make your own tortilla chips to go with dip. Simply buy a pack of corn tortillas from the store and cook them in olive oil until they are firm.
For dip, the processed bean and cheese dip sold at most stores is filled with saturated fat. Guacamole is a delicious and healthy alternative. Guacamole, with a couple avocados, cilantro and lime, is easy to make and very delicious. Avocados are a surprisingly scrumptious source of nutrients like vitamin E and potassium, and they provide support for your cardiovascular system.
The all-around side dish for a picnic is the potato salad. What makes regular potato salad so unhealthy are the globs of mayonnaise that go into the final product. While making potato salad, use fat-free mayonnaise to minimize the additional fat in the salad. A good potato salad takes advantage of the health benefits of the ingredients, such as potassium, vitamin C and fiber, without making it fatty.
For the main dish, there are two options to choose from. You can either buy something pre-made or prepare something that can be made while outdoors. A great choice for the first option is roasted chicken. Rather than eating greasy fried chicken from a bucket, roasted chicken offers a healthier alternative. Unlike fried chicken, roasted chicken is a great source of protein and has significantly fewer calories.
If you’d rather make food on the picnic than buy it from a store or make it at home, wrap sandwiches are tasty, easy and good for you. Opting to take along a whole-wheat wrap, with lean meat, lettuce and tomatoes, will increase the nutritional value of this simple outdoor meal. The total calories of a whole-wheat wrap, depending on what you put in it, can be as low as 80.
The classic dessert at a picnic is watermelon, which is actually a very healthy option. Watermelons are an excellent source of vitamin C and filled with powerful antioxidants. Likewise, a watermelons’ abundance of B vitamins produces energy, so instead of feeling tired after your meal, you’ll be ready to play Frisbee or horseshoes.
About the author: Timothy Martinez Jr. is a guest writer and blogs for a number of sites, including Picnic World.