Everyone loves a barbecue, but those fun summer get-togethers
can derail your diet and possibly raise your blood sugar and blood
pressure. This does not mean you have to give up barbecues just
because you have diabetes. Instead, follow these hints so you can
have a meal that is both delicious and healthy, whether you are
hosting or are a guest.
Cut the fat! Trim visible fat off of meals, and try healthier choices,
such as skinless chicken, fish and lean cuts of meat. Grill individualsized
pieces, so you can watch the portion size.
Marinate or season meat. Marinating meats in citrus or olive
oil-based marinades and covering them in sauce before grilling can
help reduce the formation of possible cancer-causing substances
that form when meat is cooked at height temperatures over open
flames. Plus, these marinates are tasty and healthy alternatives
to high-calorie barbecue sauces. Skip marinates altogether and
rub dry seasoning directly into the meat before cooking for a low
calorie, yet tasty choice. You may lose the cancer-reducing benefits
of marinates, but it is an excellent option for people who are looking
to avoid extra calories.
Lighten up salads. Instead of serving carb-heavy salads, such as
macaroni or potato salad, try a green salad, fruit salad or bean salad.
Skip the salty foods. Avoid highly processes meats, like hot dogs
and sausages. Even chicken or turkey dogs have a lot of salt. Pass
on the chips and pretzels, too, and head to the vegetable platter.
Grill sliced vegetables. Try cutting them into chunks and threading
them on a skewer for kebobs. Popular selections include eggplant,
zucchini, cherry tomatoes, different kinds of peppers, mushrooms,
onions and pineapple. Spray vegetables with olive oil, and season
with herbs, spices and a bit of garlic before cooking. Fresh corn on
the cob is another great option.
Smarten up desserts. Instead of ice cream, serve frozen fruit
bars, fresh fruit or Jell-O. Try grilling fresh pineapple or bananas.
Limit choices. Studies have shown that the more food choices
are available, the more people will eat. Avoid overeating by creating
simple meals with one choice of meat, several vegetables, a salad
and fruit for dessert.
BYO-Meal. If your are going to another person’s house for a
barbecue, offer to bring a side dish and dessert. Not only is it a nice
gesture, but you will know there is at least one dish that works for
your diet plan.
With almost everything in life, moderation is the key. Pick one or
two favorite dishes that may not be the healthiest choices, and pair
them with other, healthier options. Remember that healthy eating is
about making choices.