Thursday, August 15, 2013

4 Ways to Chill Out

We are experiencing a few hot days of summer and for many people that means no motivation to cook.  Who wants to heat up the house by turning on the oven anyway?  The heat can also affect your appetite and means that you need to stay hydrated.  Try to hydrate with water or dilute your 100% juice with soda water so that you're not staying cool with a lot of extra sugar.

When it's hot you may seek coolness in the basement, air conditioned house, movie theatre, mall, or swimming pool.  Being out and about may mean grabbing food away from home, and it can be very tempting to go out to eat when you're too hot to cook.  You can make some wise choices eating out, but you can also chill out at home with a little planning and preparation.

1) Use proteins that don't need to be heated.
2)  Make extra when it's not as hot (in the morning or evening)
  • leftover quinoa, rice, couscous, bulgar, or pasta for a salad tonight or tomorrow
  • leftover chicken or beef for a barbequed quesadilla or soft taco
  • hard boiled eggs for salads or sandwiches
3) Cook outside (to avoid the heat indoors)
  • enjoy the sun while you grill vegetables
  • do potatoes or corn on the barbeque for a quick starch
  • create skewers with a variety of vegetables and proteins
  • grill fruit for dessert
 4) Spice things up
  • many of the hottest countries have the spiciest food (think Thai curry, Jamaican jerk, etc.) - the spice gets you sweating which in turn helps your body to cool down
You can also stay hydrated and cool off with juice watermelon, cucumber slices, and frozen grapes.  Many people enjoy gazpacho (cold soup) with different fruits and vegetables as well.  Dietitians of Canada has a refreshing fruit gazpacho dessert you can try or use for inspiration.

What are you consuming when it's hot out?

We enjoyed leftover vegetable and bean salad with quinoa the other night for a light, quick, and cold supper.  I also tend to go towards black beans, avocado, onions, corn, tomatoes, etc. for a quick salad.

Enjoy the summer!
Steph Langdon, RD
something nutrishus counselling & coaching