Staying Healthy During the Summer

Summer is a time for vacations, barbeques, and fun in the sun! But it’s also a time when you may be more tempted to stray from your healthy habits. Or you may not have easy access to the foods you’ve committed to. You may also be a bit more inclined to slack off on your skincare routines and spend a little too much time laying in the sun. So how can you avoid the extra pounds you’ve been working so hard to get rid of? What can you do to prevent aging skin while still enjoying time in the sun? Follow some of my helpful tips to stay healthy during the summer.

Fighting the Food Temptations

We’ve all been guilty of indulging, and summertime can make it tough to stay true to your health routine. I get it! It’s the time for gatherings and pool parties. The smell of burgers on the grill, lemonade and margarita pitchers to beat the heat; it can be tough trying not to give in. So how do you avoid temptation and still join in on the summer festivities?

Be the Gracious Guest

Call up the host and offer to bring a dish or two! Chances are, they’ll appreciate the extra help, and you get to be in control of what goes into your dishes. One of my favorites, and dare I say a favorite at gatherings, is my Spinach Salad with Pomegranate Vinaigrette Dressing. Not only is this a tasty and refreshing addition to any summer get together, but it's also packed full of amazing health benefits.

Did you know that pomegranates help fight free radical damage? They also contain a super-nutrient which may help your body preserve more collagen. And you know how important collagen is after you’ve reached your early twenties! The two nutrients, beta-carotene and lutein — found in spinach — are extremely beneficial to your skin’s elasticity. Adding walnuts to your salad will provide one of the richest sources of Omega 3 you can find, while you’ll also be getting anti-aging benefits from the olive oil and avocados. That’s pretty impressive for a quick summer salad.

Try this mouth-watering recipe:

Prep time: 20 minutes • Yield: 4 servings • Portions 1 vegetable, 2 fat

Ingredients:

Pomegranate Vinaigrette

  • ¼ cup cold pressed pomegranate juice
  • 2 tablespoons pomegranate vinegar*
  • 1 teaspoon pure maple syrup
  • ½ teaspoon coarse Dijon mustard
  • 1 medium shallot, minced finely
  • ¾ teaspoon Celtic or pink Himalayan salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ cup olive oil
Salad:
  • 8 cups baby spinach
  • ½ small red onion, thinly sliced
  • ¼ cup walnut pieces, toasted
  • ¼ cup pomegranate arils
  • ½ avocado, sliced
  • ¼ cup goat cheese crumbled (optional for 80/20 plan)

Directions:

  • Combine pomegranate juice and vinegar, maple syrup, shallot, salt, and pepper and whisk together.
  • Slowly drizzle in olive oil while continuing to whisk.
  • Toss together salad ingredients and serve with dressing.

    *Note: Don’t have pomegranate vinegar? No problem. A good quality red wine vinegar can be easily substituted. Now imagine the look on everyone’s face when you tell them the fancy summer cocktail you brought over can actually help them burn fat, fight wrinkles, and heal their gut! And when they grin in disbelief, whip up a batch of one these seven fabulous bone broth cocktails while you fill them in on what bone broth has done for you!

    Try out one of my favorites – a new twist on a Bloody Mary:

    Prep Time: 5 min • Yield: two (2) 9-ounce servings

    Ingredients:

    • 1 cup Beef Bone Broth or Beef Collagen Broth™
    • 1 cup organic tomato or vegetable juice
    • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
    • ½ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
    • ½ teaspoon Tabasco or your favorite hot sauce
    • ¼ teaspoon prepared horseradish, or more to taste
    • Dash freshly ground pepper 
    • Dash Celtic or Pink Himalayan salt if juice is salt-free
    • 2 ounces potato vodka
    • Beef Bone Broth or Beef Collagen Broth™ ice cubes or regular ice cubes
    • Cooked bacon strips, celery stalks, cooked shrimp, Spanish olives, or lime wedges for garnish
    Directions:
    •         Combine all ingredients in a pitcher or drink shaker.
    •         Pour into two tall glasses.
    •         Add additional ice if desired and garnish with your choice of garnishes.

    *Variation:

    Bloody Maria: Substitute Patron tequila for vodka and add ¼ to ½ teaspoon sauce from canned chipotle in adobo. This adds a smoky, hotter taste to your yummy cocktail. You can even use bone broth in your Keto diet recipes for added benefits.

    The possibilities are endless, so don’t cancel those barbeque plans because you’re worried about what you can eat.

    Plan to Eat at Home

    If you're attending a gathering where bringing your own food isn't an option, plan ahead by eating before you go. Fill up with healthy, filling foods that will curb those cravings. Choosing plenty of veggies and foods high in protein will help you feel satisfied and give you great energy for your outing too.  Too early to eat before you go? This is the perfect time to pour yourself some bone broth to-go! You’ll get in all the nutrients and collagen your body needs, while sipping on bone broth keeps you full and less likely to be tempted by unhealthy dips and sugary desserts. Then while you’re there, choose your foods carefully, or simply eat when you get home.

    On the Road

    Summer plans don’t need to be an excuse for compromising your healthier lifestyle you’ve worked so hard on. Planning ahead is always the key. Pack your own healthy snacks that are perfect for the car. Set aside a snack batch day and prepare several of your favorites that you can easily store, then grab and go on your travel day.

    One of my go-to snacks is the Paleo Tropical Trail Mix. Whether you make it with or without the chocolate, it’s an energy treat that will satisfy your cravings and is so simple to throw together.

    Prep time: 10 min • Cook time: 10 min • Yield: about 4 ½ cups

    Ingredients

    •         2 ½ cups coconut chips
    •         1 cup dark chocolate chunks or chips
    •         1 cup dried pineapple chunks
    •         1 cup macadamia nuts
    •         1 cup almonds
    Directions
    • Preheat oven to 350º F. Spread coconut out evenly on a sheet pan and bake for 8 – 10 minutes until it begins to brown. Remove and let cool.
    • Mix together all ingredients except coconut. When coconut is cool, toss into the mix. Store in a sealed container.

    Short on time or just prefer a little less fuss? Grab one of my many pre-measured, individually packaged snack or meal options full of collagen, antioxidants, and nutrients. From Chocolate Coconut Collagen Fiber Bars to Slim Bone Broth To Go, you’ll be ready with your travel packs when healthy options aren’t readily available.

    Soup Anyone?

    Another summer tip I often share takes some people by surprise –  the power of summer soup. Yep, it’s perfect even in the summer heat. Soup can leave you feeling full without giving you that tired, heavy feeling. In fact, soup will leave your stomach so satisfied, you’ll end up eating up to 20% less than you normally do. Think of it as a slimming summer soup routine. There are so many amazing recipes you can experiment with that will give you the nutrients your body needs. It’s also another perfect way for you to get more bone broth into your diet. You’ll be restoring collagen and helping reverse the signs of aging by restoring your skin’s elasticity, fighting off fine lines, wrinkles, and brightening dull skin. Need a little inspiration?

    Try this delicious Avocado Soup with Smokey Chipotle Adobo recipe:

    Prep time: 20 mins • Yield: 4 servings

    Ingredients

    • ½ tablespoon ghee or pasture-raised butter
    • 1 medium onion, diced 
    • 1 clove garlic, minced
    •  ½ - 1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce (available in the Hispanic section of most supermarkets)
    • 3 cups homemade chicken broth, Dr. Kellyannʼs SLIM® Chicken Bone Broth or Dr. Kellyannʼs SLIM® Collagen Broth
    • ½ teaspoon salt (optional, depending on the saltiness of chicken stock)
    • 2 ripe avocados, peeled and cut into chunks
    • 1 cup full-fat canned coconut milk
    • ¼ cup freshly squeezed lime juice
    • ½ cup cilantro leaves (reserve a few leaves for garnish)
    • 1 tomato diced for garnish
    • 1 to 2 scallions sliced for garnish
    Directions:
    • Put ghee/butter in a saucepan on medium heat, add onions and sauté until soft and clear, but not browned.
    • Add garlic and chipotle in adobo and stir; do not let garlic brown.
    • Add broth and avocados and bring to a low simmer for 10 minutes to let flavors meld.
    • In a blender combine avocado mixture with coconut milk, lime juice, and cilantro and blend until smooth and creamy.
    • Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or until well chilled.
    • Garnish with cilantro leaves, tomatoes, and scallions.

    Note: Hot liquids in a blender will expand and release steam; use caution when blending hot liquids.  Take a look at more of my favorite light summer soup recipes. You’re bound to find a few you’ll love. 

    Skincare in the Summer

    There are many misconceptions out there about exposing your skin to the sun. We are warned to stay covered up. Warned to lather on the highest SPF level we can get our hands on. We are conditioned to fear the rays because of cancer and horrible early aging signs. But we're also told we need to be in the sun to boost our levels of vitamin D.

    So what’s with all the confusion? With the extra sun you’ll be soaking up this summer, I know you take care of your skin the best you can. This doesn’t mean you need to shy away from the sun altogether, though. In fact, getting your vitamin D can fight depression by increasing serotonin levels, which help regulate your mood. It has also been known to help prevent diabetes and lower your risk of heart attacks. Vitamin D is even linked to cancer prevention and weight loss.

    These are all wonderful reasons to allow yourself to enjoy some time in the sun. So why are we so determined to hide from it? While many practice layering on their sunscreen outdoors, it’s preventing your skin from making vitamin D. And not all sunscreen is good for your skin anyway. When you think about the number of chemicals that go into a bottle of sunscreen, is it that difficult to see why it may not be a healthy choice?

    Have you heard that research shows roughly 80% of sunscreen purchased in the US does not actually protect your skin against UVA rays as it claims? According to the FDA, SPF 50 and above don't offer the extra protection they claim to. Covering up in the sun with umbrellas and clothing will also create a barrier that prevents your body from making the levels of vitamin D it needs.

    So what’s considered a safe and healthy amount of sun exposure? Try spending thirty minutes outside every day. Allow your skin to be exposed – no sunscreen, no extra clothing to shield you completely from the sunlight. This amount of sunlight moderation lets your body naturally restore vitamin D and is completely safe. If you're smart about your time in the sun, you'll be perfectly safe and reward your body with its amazing benefits.

    Following a few more helpful tips will help you stay healthy in the sunlight this summer:

    • Wear sunscreen if you plan to be in the sun longer than thirty minutes.
    • Focus more on the ingredients in your sunscreen rather than its SPF number.
    • Try to buy organic sunscreens to limit your skin’s exposure to harsh chemicals.
    So don’t shy away from the sun this summer! Instead, make smart decisions that allow your body to soak in the rays and enjoy your time outdoors. While I do understand it’s a tough habit to change, there are a few additional things you can do to make sure your skin is ready for the sun. Adding these items to your daily diet can provide added protection:
    • Collagen: strengthens your skin and provides resistance to fine lines and wrinkles.
    • Dark, leafy greens: packed full of phytonutrients, which may help protect you from cancer.
    • Coconut oil: contains lauric acid, which helps build strong skin cells starting from the inside out.
    • Blueberries: full of antioxidants and provides protection from aging signs due to sun exposure.

    So as you make those summertime plans, just remember to make wise, healthy, and informed choices. Creating and maintaining a healthier lifestyle doesn’t have to be a chore.  Find the recipes that will carry you through the next few months, fill your body with the nutrients it needs, and enjoy your summer!

    Keep thinking Big and living BOLD!


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