Are Your Favorite Summer Treats Bad for You?

Summer is all about light eating, right? Well some of those summer treats you think are healthy could be hiding a big caloric surprise. Here are a few summer treats that deserve a double take.

1). Summer Brew

Before you down a few bottles of that special summer ale, take a moment to consider the caloric cost. Most alcohol doesn’t show nutritional information, so it’s often a case of blissful ignorance. Beer can have anywhere from 100 to 300 calories per serving, with higher alcohol content generally indicating more calories. And don’t forget that alcohol has the double effect of stimulating the appetite and weakening resolve, setting you up for weight loss failure.

2). Ice Pops

What could be more light and refreshing than an fruity icy pop? But not all of these treats are equal. Many frozen treats are loaded with sugars and artificial ingredients. If you are going to indulge, make sure you find the kind that are just fruit, or even better, make your own. Try these yummy recipes.

3). Frozen Yogurt

Frozen yogurt is not the healthy choice that people seem to think it is. Most frozen yogurt is loaded with sugar and who can resist piling on the toppings? Try making your own frozen yogurt treat by putting a nonfat, plain Greek yogurt in the freezer for 20-30 minutes and then top with fresh fruit and a drizzle of honey.

4). Salad

Just because it’s called a ‘salad’ doesn’t mean it’s healthy. Have you ever looked closely at the nutrition facts on one of those pre-made salad packs? You may be getting a serving of veggies, but you’re also getting a ton of fat and calories in the dressings and toppings. Avoid toppings like croutons, bacon, cheese, candied nuts and creamy dressings. If you can make your own salad, try a simple dressing of balsamic vinegar, a touch of olive oil, and a squeeze of lemon. If you’re ordering out, always get the dressing on the side and dip your fork in the dressing before taking a bite, rather than drenching your salad.

5). Chips With…

Marketers love to add trendy ingredients to common foods, especially when those ingredients will make people think a food is healthy. If you’re looking at a bag of chips with flax, quinoa, sweet potato, or chia added, you’re still looking at a bag of chips! Looking for a better snack? Try an apple sliced and coated in lemon juice. The lemon adds a refreshing burst of citrus and keeps the apple from browning. Or dip baby carrots and and cucumber slices in hummus.