Swimsuits, smoothies, road trips and barbecues all scream “summer!” Summer is also the best time to rediscover the produce and seafood sections at your local Safeway. Here are a few nutrition secrets to give your health a boost this summer.
Make the Switch This Summer from Processed Meat to Seafood
Throw some salmon or shrimp on the Barbie instead of sausage links or franks and help your heart! Replacing just 3 percent of protein calories from processed meat with protein from seafood was tied to a 31 percent reduction in the risk of dying from heart complications or stroke, according to two large studies. There is even more evidence now to back up the recommendation the American Heart Association made years ago—for adults to strive for two 3.5-ounce servings of fish each week.
Avocados are Diabetes- and Carb-Friendly
If you aren’t already in the habit of buying an avocado at every shopping trip and adding them to salads, sandwiches, eggs and entrees, now is a great time to start. For starters, avocados are heart-healthy fruit filled with good fats and nearly 20 vitamins and minerals and when eaten alone, avocadoes won’t significantly raise your blood glucose levels. One-third of an avocado just adds 4 grams of carbohydrate to your meal.
Add Avocados for a Slimming Summer Secret
Adding one-half of an avocado to lunch helped participants feel more satisfied with a 40% decrease in desire to eat after the meal compared to eating the lunch with no avocado, according to new research from Loma Linda University. Eating a variety of fruits and vegetables may also help people control their weight, along with improving cholesterol and blood pressure. A serving of avocados (1/3 of a medium) adds 3 grams of fiber and fiber ads bulk to the diet, keeping you feeling full faster and longer. Turn up the satisfaction in your meals by tossing avocados in your sandwiches/wraps, salads, egg dishes and entrees.
Adding Avocado to Your Burger Just Became the Best Summer BBQ Tip!
Avocados may be an inflammation neutralizer. Eating one-half of a fresh medium Hass avocado with a burger (90% lean), rather than eating a burger alone, may curb the production of compounds that contribute to inflammation for four hours after the meal, according to new UCLA research. So, top your burger this summer with guacamole instead of mayonnaise or serve it up with slices of avocado instead of cheese.
Avocados Help Boost Absorption of Key Nutrients
Heart-healthy avocados act as a “nutrient booster” by helping increase absorptions of fat-soluble nutrients like vitamins A, D, K and E. Good fats help the body absorb these nutrients without raising LDL (“bad”) cholesterol levels when eaten as part of a healthy diet. Avocados themselves deliver nearly 20 vitamins and minerals plus 11 antioxidant and anti-inflammatory carotenoid plant compounds such as lutein and zeaxanthin (which some research suggests may help maintain healthy eyesight as we age. The dark green part of the avocado closest to the peel is the nutrient-rich part containing most of the carotenoid compounds. To make sure and get all of this, cut the avocado into 3 wedges lengthwise then peel the skin from the avocado.