The season of warm weather is upon us. Most people in Indiana look forward to summertime every year! The weather is nice and there are always fun things to do like go to baseball games, vacations, you name it. It may seem hard to stay on top of your health goals during this time, but you don’t have to go on the journey of getting healthy this summertime alone!
Summer health tips
These helpful summer health tips will invigorate you and your start to summer. Don’t go on this journey alone; share this list with a friend and encourage each other to be your best selves while having fun this summer!
Start fresh – Winter is done, and the warm weather is here to stay (for at least a few months)! Take this time to start fresh and be the best version of yourself this summer. Start simple by taking a walk outside and enjoying the fresh air. Make it a walk of gratitude--and as you exercise, remind yourself of the things you are grateful for in your life.
Take advantage of the weather – Try to get outside as much as possible during the summer. Think back to the long, cold and dark winter days when you wished for sunshine. Now it is here, so take advantage of it.
Take your lunch outside – If you are working in the office, ask a coworker if they want to eat outside with you. If you work remotely, step away from your desk and enjoy your lunch in the fresh air and sunshine.
Plan active summer vacations or weekend trips – Take advantage of your local parks and playgrounds. Look ahead at where you will be vacationing and plan several family outdoor activities this summer.
Summer safety tips
The summer brings lots of sunshine, but it can also bring sunburn if you don’t apply sunscreen before going outside. Follow these simple summer safety tips so you and your family can have a fun and safe summer.
Sun safety is important – It’s time to crank out the SPF. Applying sunscreen throughout the day when you are outside can help you prevent sunburn. There are many different strengths and types of sunscreen, and it is available at stores everywhere. Do your research online to find the best and most protective sunscreen for your skin.
Hydration – With all the fun of summer, it’s easy to forget to take a second to hydrate. One suggestion to help you stay hydrated is to keep electrocyte packets with you during active hot days. It is also important to take a full water bottle or jug whenever you’re out, so you remember to hydrate throughout your day.
Workout in the morning or evening – To avoid the heat, try being most active in the mornings or evenings when the sun isn’t so intense.
Take advantage of the shade – Bring an umbrella to the pool and beach, wear a hat and sunglasses outdoors and sit in the shade to avoid overexposure to heat and sun.
Summer mental health tips
Keep these tips in mind when focusing on your mental health this summer:
Don’t be too hard on yourself – If the first half of your year didn’t go as planned, don’t be too hard on yourself if you need to revisit establishing a healthy routine. You may need to start slowly when getting back into your routine, but you can do it! It takes some time to find your rhythm.
Take advantage of the weather – Even if it is only for a few minutes, get outside and enjoy the sunshine and vitamin D. Sunshine and vitamin D have been proven to help boost your mood during the day. Breathe in the fresh air and take a moment for yourself to enjoy the gorgeous weather.
Let the fresh air in! – Open the windows in your house and drive with the windows down. If you can’t bring the kitchen outside, bring the fresh air inside so you can enjoy it while cooking your favorite summer meals.
Journal or read outside – Make it a point to try to move some of your daily activities outdoors. Daily reading or journaling that is usually done in the morning or night can easily be moved outside. Grab a cup of coffee or tea and head outdoors.
Health summer recipes
Summer is a wonderful time to focus on improving your eating habits, especially increasing your fruit and vegetable intake. The summer months bring tons of yummy and fresh produce to the grocery aisles and local farmers markets. Items like blueberries, mangoes, cucumbers, corn, watermelon and many more will be hitting the shelves soon. And nothing beats an ear of fresh Indiana corn!
Healthy summer appetizers
Here are two delicious and easy healthy summer appetizers to enjoy during the sunshine season.
Black Bean & Corn Salsa
First, combine these ingredients:
Next, combine these ingredients to make the dressing:
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 juiced lime
½ teaspoon chili powder
½ teaspoon cumin
Salt and pepper to taste
Pour the dressing over the mixture and enjoy!
Pineapple Mango Bruschetta
1 can pineapple rings
1 diced mango
1 diced bell pepper
¼ red onion, diced
Grill pineapple over medium heat for three minutes per side then dice
Combine all ingredients in a bowl, mix well, and let sit for 15 minutes
Preheat oven to 400 degrees, place bread slices on a sheet pan and brush with olive oil
Toast bread slices in oven for 10-12 minutes, then let them cool
Top bread slices with a spoonful of the fruit mixture
Healthy summer dinners
Change up your normal dinner routine and take the family dinner to the backyard. You could even pack up dinner and take it to your favorite park.
Take advantage of using a grill outside. These are some of my favorite things you can cook on the grill this summer:
Don’t forget to follow these grill safety tips while grilling this year.
Salads are a perfect way to stay healthy and get creative for dinner. Make salads a staple item on the dinner menu at least once a week and try these items to help enhance the salad:
Add grilled chicken
Make your own vinaigrette-based salad dressing
Add avocado or pecans for a healthy fat
Add some fruit, too. Strawberries, grapes and oranges are a flavorful twist
This year, try to venture out and try new summer fresh produce including:
Healthy summer desserts
Who said dessert and healthy can’t go together? Try these simple ways to lighten up some of your favorite summer desserts:
Lighter side of peach cobbler
Slice fresh peaches and spray them with a little coconut oil and season with cinnamon
Air fry peaches in air fryer for 10 minutes at 400 degrees
Serve with granola and a scoop of frozen nonfat whip cream
Fill your muffin pan with muffin liners
Combine 1 cup of oats, ¼ cup peanut butter and a ¼ cup maple syrup
Mix well and smash oat mixture into bottom of muffin tin
Fill oat molds with non-fat vanilla Greek yogurt
Add desired fresh sliced fruit (e.g., kiwi, raspberries, strawberries, blueberries and mango)
Place in freezer overnight
Make this summer a positive one with these healthy tips!