Summer Pearadise

summer-pearadise-photos2In my house, July = summer. And now that summer is in full swing, it’s time to don the bathing suit and little dresses that have been hiding in the closet since last summer. Feeling a little trepidation about all of those summer barbeques and weight gain? Don’t fret; summer doesn’t have to be a calorie-fest! There is an abundance of fresh foods available right now, and fun outdoor activities abound. A trick I use to forget the fright but keep all the fun is to always plan ahead.

Having a plan is the tool that rules, and the best way to plan ahead is to BYOD. Bring your own dish! Not sure you can control yourself around party food? Bring a healthy option or a lighter version of a favorite, and plan to eat that food first to limit temptation. The key to bringing your own dish is to avoid summertime saboteurs – avoid cold salads with mayo, chips and dip, fatty meats, sugary desserts with whipped cream, and high-calorie cocktails (think margaritas and daiquiris). Adding fresh fruit is a sure way to limit calories, and the natural fiber and water fill you up and keep you satisfied.

Pears are a versatile companion at any summertime soiree. Fresh cut pears, summer fruit, and crudités are an excellent way to fill up – without excess calories. Or try tossing pears with a variety of fruit for a fresh summer salad. This dish does double duty as dessert: try blueberries, strawberries, and pears for a red, white, and blue salad. Another option, cut fruit and veggie sticks, and add whole grain crackers for an attractive party tray. Heading to a barbeque? Throw some pear and pineapple spears on the grill, or skewer with shrimp, chicken or pork and a dash of teriyaki for an island treat. In charge of drinks? Choose diet soda or a spritzer for a lighter twist, and use cut pears and mixed fruit to flavor your spirits. Drink a glass of water between libations, or mix a mocktail! Try diet lemon-lime soda, fresh cut pears rings, and a twist of lime for a zesty, guilt-free treat.

When you BYOD, you know what you’re eating and you can fill up without feeling guilty. So, party on!

About Amy Kweller MS, RD

As a Registered Dietitian, I have a professional relationship with pears. But as someone who loves great food, I also have a personal relationship with pears! So there is no better way to spend my time than blogging about this lovely fruit. I will blog about pears from farm to table; healthy living, cooking, and recipes; the therapeutic benefits of pears and a wholesome diet; and how pears can fit into your lifestyle. I have a background in clinical and community nutrition, and teaching others how to lead healthy, fulfilling lives is my goal and passion – so send me your questions. My hope is that everyone who visits this site will find something that lingers long after the browser closes, and I expect that will be a deeper love of pears!

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