- How should we change our eating habits for the summer months compared to the rest of the year? Summer is a great time to eat fresh fruits, vegetables, and herbs. Always try to eat foods that are in season, watermelon and cucumbers are hydrating, tomatoes, peppers, and fresh herbs can be incorporated into salads for a light and cool summer meal. Summer tends to be a time when we get lazy and may end up eating more unhealthy convenient foods like ice cream, hot dogs and fast food, simply because we are busy outdoors and not on our regular routine of eating dinner at the same time each day.
- What sorts of snacks should I offer my children in the summer and why are they good choices? Offer them fresh fruits and vegetables; make homemade smoothies with yogurt, fruit, leafy greens and coconut water. Since kids tend to eat similar items in their school lunches during the school year get them involved with cooking during the summer and try new healthy recipes to give them an opportunity to get exposed to new foods.
- What foods should I NOT eat in the summer? Avoid sugary sweets like Italian ice, ice cream, sodas and fast food. These options will deplete energy, and may cause weight gain or decreased performance if they are involved with summer sports.
- Is it important to eat meals at regular times in the summer or is it perfectly okay to eat whenever hunger strikes? I think as long as the options are healthy the schedule can be loosened up. Toddlers and preschool age children may need their normal scheduled snacks and meals but older children can eat when they are hungry or break from outdoor activities.
- Do I need to increase my water intake for the summer?
Aim to drink at least half your body weight in water per day. Avoid sports drinks, juice and sodas, these are loaded with unhealthy sodium, sugar and in some cases dyes.
I prefer Hydroxide Alkaline water. Here the OH- ion (hydroxide) will combine will the H+ ion which causes the acidity and form water, eliminating the acid instead of just buffering it. I prefer elimination to buffering. The best Hydroxide Alkaline water I found through my research is AQUA OH! It is all natural and made from limestone.
- Is there anything else we should know about nutrition during the summer?
Aim to consume at least 5 servings of fruits and vegetables per day, limit sugary foods, and stay hydrated in the heat. Plan healthy meals ahead of time to avoid making unhealthy decisions on the go.