Nutrition in summer: what foods to prefer?

Summer is finally here and with it the opportunity to enjoy the sun, the sea and tasty lunches under an umbrella or during a rejuvenating walk in the mountains. But how best to cope with this season also from a nutritional point of view? What are the most suitable foods? And what are the best combinations to create nutritious and light dishes? Let’s find out together!

Ten tips for healthy eating in summer

To get started, we list below 10 tips for proper and safe nutrition in summer:

  1. We drink at least two liters (eight glasses) of water a day. In summer, with increased sweating and perspiration, there is a significant loss of mineral salts, which we will also have to go to replenish through proper hydration. So right from the morning we try to create a proper hydration routine for ourselves. Let’s also remember that pregnant women, children and the elderly are most at risk of dehydration. Instead, we moderate our consumption of drinks with added sugars. And we limit the consumption of alcoholic beverages as much as possible.
  2. We respect the number and times of meals, starting as early as breakfast. This is a very important meal that comes after the longest fasting period in the 24-hour period and provides the energy to better cope with the first part of the day and beyond.
  3. We increase consumption of seasonal fruits and vegetables and yogurt. Fruits and vegetables should become the real stars of our summer meals, rich in vitamins, minerals, fiber, water and antioxidants help us keep our bodies healthy. Every day we should consume at least 5 servings. As for yogurt, we prefer white yogurt without added sugars, which we could flavor by simply adding a portion of fresh fruit. Finally, let’s not forget about dried fruits (almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts, etc…), which are rich in “good” fats, minerals and fiber, great to add to a salad, in your morning yogurt or to have in your backpack as a quick and convenient snack.
  4. Let’s unleash our imagination in the kitchen, experimenting with new recipes, varying ingredients and paying attention to always having a colorful diet. Next, we will look together at the characteristics behind the different colors of seasonal fruits and vegetables.
  5. We moderate our consumption of overly processed dishes. In hot weather, our body consumes less energy and therefore it is advisable, to moderate calorie intake. We also prefer cooking that leaves as much of the food’s mineral and vitamin content intact as possible, such as steaming or microwaving. We use herbs such as basil, oregano, thyme, and rosemary to add flavor to our recipes while enriching them with valuable minerals such as calcium and potassium. Finally, we season our dishes with EVO oil, preferably raw, so that we can fully enjoy the antioxidants and good fats in which it is rich.
  6. We favor fresh, easily digestible and water-rich foods. Instead, we limit foods that are too processed, salty or sugary. In terms of preparations, we also limit our consumption of fried foods, gravies and sauces in general.
  7. An ice cream or smoothie can be a viable snack alternative, alternating with fresh fruit, yogurt and nuts. If we wanted, we could also try making fresh homemade ice cream with the help of some molds. All we simply have to do is add some fresh blended fruit pulp to the white yogurt, portion it into the molds and let them freeze overnight. The next day we will have a snack that is both refreshing and nutritious.
  8. We prefer balanced one-dish meals instead of overly large meals that would risk overweighting us throughout the day. Green light, then, to grain and vegetable salads with the addition of legumes, fresh cheeses, fish, white meats and eggs. We can also experiment with some unusual pairings, such as the recipe you’ll find in this month’s reel: venus rice salad, with feta, melon and mint, a balanced recipe that tastes like summer!
  9. We limit salt consumption, preferring iodized salt to ensure proper iodine supply to the thyroid. We try, in any case, not to exceed 5 grams of salt per day, as per the guidelines.
  10. We pay attention to how we store food so that we do not run into unpleasantness. For example, we try to maintain the cold chain for foods that require it, organizing ourselves with a cooler bag when we go grocery shopping or decide to have a “packed” lunch.

A summer full of color!

The color of fruits and vegetables, is given by the presence of substances with antioxidant action that are essential for our well-being. Let’s find out together:

  • orange/yellow color is associated with the presence of flavonoids and carotenoids such as beta-carotene (precursor of vitamin A), an antioxidant that promotes healthy eyes and skin. We find these valuable substances for example in carrots, peaches, apricots and but also in green leafy vegetables.
  • The red color, on the other hand, indicates the presence of lycopene and anthocyanins. The former is a powerful antioxidant from the carotenoid family that protects the heart and counteracts cell aging, as well as having anti-cancer effects. Tomatoes, strawberries, cherries and red peppers are just some of the foods that are richest in them.
  • The color green is synonymous with chlorophyll, but also with folic acid and magnesium. Chlorophyll also boasts a powerful antioxidant effect, while folic acid is essential for pregnant women and for the health of our cardiovascular system. Salads, parsley, basil, arugula, zucchini, cucumber and spinach are just some of the delicious options for adding greenery to our summer table.
  • Purple indicates the presence of anthocyanins, substances that help improve blood circulation and strengthen the immune system. Eggplant, blackberries, blueberries and black grapes are just some of the purple foods we can enjoy this season.
  • And finally, white-colored fruits and vegetables are rich in isociocyanates, whose protective action against cellular aging has been confirmed by several studies, and they also contain allylsulfide, which promotes blood fluidity and helps in the prevention of cardiovascular problems. So let’s not forget to add garlic, onions, leeks but also melon and white peaches to our shopping cart

In conclusion, eating in season is essential to make sure you get your fill of the nutrients best suited for the warm season. By choosing fresh and colorful foods, it will be easy to organize light and tasty meals that will contribute to our well-being.

A summer recipe: venus rice salad with feta, melon and mint!

Here is a super summer recipe that I love, an unusual combination that will win you over with its freshness! Let’s see how to prepare a venus rice salad with feta, melon and mint!

(4 people)

INGREDIENTS:

  • 280 g black venus rice
  • 150 g of feta cheese
  • half a melon
  • a bunch of mint
  • EVO oil
  • taggiasca olives
  • one BIO lemon
  • gherkins
  • salt and pepper to taste.

PROCEDURE:

  1. First, we cut both melon and feta into small cubes.
  2. Then we hull and wash the basil and finally break it up with our hands
  3. Meanwhile, we boil the rice in plenty of boiling salted water. Let’s stop its cooking by running it under a stream of cold water, drain it and transfer it to a salad bowl
  4. Once the rice has completely cooled, add the diced feta and melon, mint and finally add the olives and sliced cucumbers.
  5. We season it with 3 tablespoons of EVO oil, and a few BIO lemon zest, stir gently and let it sit for a couple of hours before serving.

 

Latest articles

Categories

Share

Facebook
LinkedIn
Twitter

You might also be interested in.