How to Stick With Your Health Goals This Summer!

By Jacqueline Weiss, Cornell University, Nutrition Sciences Intern
Reviewed by Katy Bowen, MS, RDN, LD, Director of Community Outreach, CHEF
Edited by Andi Champion, Program Coordinator, CHEF

With the school year winding down, summer fun is on the horizon! Whether your family plans to fire up the grill, hang out by the pool, or take a trip to the beach, joining in on the end-of-school year celebrations doesn’t mean you have to lose sight of your health goals. If you’re worried about falling into the “anything goes” pitfall, we’ve got great tips to help you stay on track.

Stay Active:
Consider adding more physical actives to your plans. Explore a park on a family hike, have a jump rope or hula hoop contest, enjoy time swimming in the pool, play catch, start up a game of beach volleyball, or go for a bike ride! Engaging children in 60 minutes of physical activity each day is optimal for their well-being.

Choose Better-for-You Foods When Hosting a Cook-Out:
Swap out traditional BBQ items such as hot dogs, chips, and potato salad and replace them with better for you options. Skip those pre-made dips from the store and make your own at home! You’ll save calories and have peace of mind knowing exactly what ingredients went into your dish. Our Simple Hummus and Ranchy Dip are great to serve with sliced up veggies as an appetizer.

Fire up the grill and serve our Herb Rubbed Flank Steak or add a plant-based protein to the menu like our Easy Bean Burgers. Some simple, better-for-you side options include: Citrus Cucumber Slaw, Summer Mango Salsa, Confetti Corn, Kale & Bulgur Medley, or Colorful Black Bean Salsa. Painting your plate with colorful fruits and veggies is a great way to make sure you meet the recommended 5 servings per day.

For a delicious dessert, throw some peaches on the grill or try our fresh Rainbow Fruit Skewers. The possibilities for healthy and tasty foods are endless, especially with the all the fresh produce in season. Check out our CHEF recipes for even more inspiration. Don’t forget to include your kids in the choosing and making of recipes to get them equally as excited!