1. Focus on the Bright Colors! Take advantage of the plentiful, brightly colored fresh produce. Enjoy creating beautiful eye-catching meals!
2. Be Experimental! With the bounty of fruits and veggies summer’s growth brings us, step outside your comfort zone of the same ole fruits and veggies. If you’re eating the same every day or every week that means your body is getting the same nutrients time and again. Adding in new fruits and veggies will get you MORE and NEW nutrients for a more well-rounded diet. Let your diet reflect the growth and abundance of summer!
3. Summer Cooking! Having fresh food that requires minimal cooking is the way to go during summer months! Choose veggies that you don’t need to cook very long.
- Sauté: at a high temperature for a very short time.
- Steaming/Simmering: as lightly and quickly as possible (e.g., this leaves fruits and veggies with a little crunch).
NOTE: When preparing, use very little salt and focus on the water.
4. For Cooking or Fresh Salad… spice things up! Really? But doesn’t it seem like you should do the opposite in the summertime? Including spicy ingredients in your cooking, in moderation, does increase the warmth of your body internally, but this ultimately helps the body mirror the summer climate. Think of this as a way to help your body adjust and be less affected by the hot summer days. With that said, do this on days that are NOT the hottest of summer days. On truly hot summer days we want to choose foods that have a cooling effect so we don’t overheat… more on that below.
- Red & Green Hot Peppers
- Cayenne Pepper
- Fresh Ginger
- Black Pepper
5. Serve Cooling Fresh, High Water Content Foods on those truly hot summer days! We are not talking about foods that are cold in temperature like ice cream or slushies, but rather those that have a higher water content and have cooling properties.
- Fruit, specifically apples, melons, lemons and limes
6. To Prevent Sluggishness! Decrease dense, heavy meals and foods. On those hot, hot, hot days consider eating less at a meal than you typically do and keep it light. With that, you may plan for a snack to ensure adequate fuel.
7. Drink Up! It’s easier to get dehydrated in the summer months. If you don’t have a water bottle yet then get yourself a go-to, eco-friendly one. If you’re not a huge fan of water, add watermelon, cucumber and/or mint to add some fresh summertime flavor! Staying hydrated can help prevent sluggishness too!
Recipes for Fruit Infused Water
To get the best flavor, add your ingredients to your water and refrigerate overnight.
Strawberry, Lemon & Basil
- Add 1-2 sliced strawberries (or any other berry), 1-2 lemon wedges and a teaspoon of fresh scrunched basil
Watermelon & Mint
- Add a couple chunks of watermelon and a couple mint leaves
Citrus & Cucumber
- Add wedges of orange, lemon and lime with a couple slices of cucumber
Strawberry, Lime & Cucumber
- Add 1-2 sliced strawberries, 1-2 wedges of lime, and a couple slices of cucumber
Grapefruit & Rosemary
- Add wedges of grapefruit and a few sprigs of rosemary
Orange & Blueberry
- Add wedges of orange and a small handful of blueberries (can smash up the berries for more flavor)
Tropical Mango & Pineapple
- Add a few chunks of mango and diced pineapple