Summertime is the perfect time for a nutrition upgrade

Summertime is the perfect time for a nutrition upgrade

by Sarah Pflugradt, MS, RDN, CSCS
Stripes Europe

If your summer bucket list consists of sunshine, road trips, relaxing by the pool and spending time with friends, you have your priorities straight. However, if you really want to take of YOU, try adding one more thing to your checklist — eating healthy. There’s no better time to amp up that summertime fun than giving your body the energy to get it all done. Summer is the perfect time to upgrade your diet with the abundance of fresh seasonal produce available all summer long. Here’s why:

  • We are always looking for ways to be the best version of ourselves. Well, fruits and vegetables are the best versions of themselves right when they’re picked and soon after. This means that getting fresh, local and seasonal fruits and vegetables are going to give you more nutrients than if they spent a long time being shipped to your store. So, for the most nutrition in your summer produce, eat it within a few days of purchase. If you think you won’t eat it in time, some fruits, such as berries, peaches and mango can be cut up and frozen to save for another time.
  • Your skin is going to be front and center with those rising summer temps. Plant-based eating or having a diet that is high in plant foods is not only the hottest nutrition trend, but it’s a trend that’s good for your skin. Fruits and vegetables are chock full of nutrients that help your skin — vitamin C, vitamin A and water — so sip away on that summer fruit smoothie and pack some fruit to eat poolside. Your glowing skin will thank you.
  • Usually, upgrading can cost you a pretty penny, but not the summer nutrition upgrade. Save that hard-earned cash for a new bathing suit because you’re going to feel like a million bucks with all the inexpensive fruits and vegetables that will line your grocery cart. Fruits and vegetables are cheaper when they are in season, because there is an abundance and that means big savings for you.

Summer is the time for lighter and fresher meals, so make nutrition a priority and you might just find yourself a little lighter and fresher too.

If you’re not sure where to start, try adding 1-2 new fruits or vegetables to your grocery cart each week and have a plan on how you want to eat them. Here are some fruits and vegetables that are at the best in the summer months:

Fruits

  • Berries
  • Peaches
  • Plums
  • Watermelon
  • Mango
  • Figs

Vegetables

  • Tomatoes
  • Radishes
  • Greens
  • Green Peas
  • Green Beans
  • Zucchini

Sarah Pflugradt is a registered dietitian, writer, health educator and blogger at sarahpflugradt.com, a website that promotes healthy eating for active families. She is the author of the cookbook Live to Eat Well, a weight loss guide with 100 Mediterranean diet recipes. Sarah lives in Germany with her husband and 3 busy sport loving kids.

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