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5 Healthy Strategies for Grilling Out

healthy living Aug 11, 2022

Grilling your food is a delicious way to cook outdoors. Not only does it provide an excellent opportunity to enjoy the company of friends or neighbors, but it also allows you to change up your dinner routine. When done correctly, grilling can be a healthy and delicious way to cook your favorite foods.

Here are a few healthy grilling tips to help you finish summer strong: 


Use herbs

When it comes to healthy grilling, fresh herbs are your friend. Not only do they add flavor to your food, but they can also help to boost the nutritional value of your meal. Rosemary, for example, is a powerful antioxidant that can help to protect your cells from damage. Thyme is a good source of Vitamin C, which helps to boost immunity. And basil contains anti-inflammatory compounds that can help to reduce inflammation. So next time you fire up the grill, reach for some fresh herbs to take your meal to the next level.


Prioritize veggies (and fruits!)

Next time you fire up the grill, try putting veggies and fruits front and center. Not only are they healthier options, but they're also just as delicious when cooked over an open flame. For example, grilled vegetables like zucchini, eggplant, and peppers are a great way to add flavor and nutrition to your meal. And fruit kabobs are a fun and easy way to enjoy summer fruits like cherries, peaches, and watermelon.


Make your own sauces

Store-bought barbecue sauces and condiments can be loaded with sugar, sodium, and unhealthy fats. So why not make your own? It's easier than you think, and you can control the ingredients to ensure they fit into your healthy lifestyle.


Smart Side-Items

Focus on grilled fruits and vegetables as side dish options. These are not only healthy and delicious options, but they also contain important vitamins and minerals that can help you stay well. Typical barbeque side items such as potato salad, macaroni salad, and baked beans still have a place on your plate if you enjoy them. But when you prioritize your plate by filling it with mostly healthy options, you'll create healthy habits that stick while still enjoying all the delicious foods you love.


Avoid processed meats

Hot dogs, sausages, and hamburgers are your usual barbeque go-to options. For healthier options, you can choose portobello burgers, veggie burgers, or high-quality chicken or turkey burgers.  Processed meat—from hot dogs to bacon—increases the risk of colorectal cancer, cardiovascular disease, and even early death. It's also a good idea to consider avoiding or limiting grilling meat.  (See Carcinogens in Meat)


Grilling out is a summer tradition, but it doesn't have to mean you can't eat nutritional foods that fuel you. Plenty of healthy options can fit into your grilled meal, including veggie burgers, fruits and vegetables, and delicious side items to help you stay on track with your health goals while still enjoying your favorite grilled foods.


Check out some healthy recipes for the grill...


Grilled Tofu Skewers

Grilled Veggie Skewers with Chimichurri Sauce

Portobello Burgers

Grilled Peaches




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