Summer is when everyone eats lighter, right? More activity, more outdoors, less time on the couch just naturally leads away from “comfort food.” Well that might be the image. The reality is somewhat different.

We think of fruits and vegetables being even fresher and more abundant in the summer, but we forget about the ice cream. We think summer is about chilled gazpacho, but we forget about the fries that come alongside the BBQ ribs. We think summer is for seafood, but then we go to the grill with a tray of red meat to baste and sear.

It’s no good to be preachy about favorite foods. After all, eating is about culture as well as nutrition. But we would do well to turn the “myth” of eating light in the summer into a reality, and then making it a family tradition.

Color Keys to Nutrition

Vibrant vegetables are even more appealing in the summer. Think of fresh peppers in green, red, and yellow. Fruits, too. And our precious peaches shouldn’t all be shipped north of the Mason-Dixon line.

Our fruits and vegetables are not just signals of summer; they also supply important antioxidants. And phytonutrients come with our vegetables, too, helping protect us against all the top threats to health, including heart disease, stroke, cancer, high blood pressure, diabetes, and obesity.

If we saw a commercial for something we could take that would protect us from all those health issues, wouldn’t we be interested? Summer is a good time to build a habit of eating five servings of vegetables a day – not just three. That’s the state-of-the-art advice from nutrition experts today.

When Nutrition is Delicious

What a good time summer is to discover the taste and nutrition explosion of the blueberry. They’re famous for antioxidants, sure, and their gentle sweetness helps stabilize our blood sugar. But there’s even more going for them. The polyphenols that make blueberries blue may help your bones stay strong, and help reduce the heart attack and stroke risk of developing plaque in your arteries.

Not just an excellent calypso tune sung by a cartoon crab, under the sea is where some great sources of nutritious protein live. Don’t miss the most abundant season for seafood, and why not make it the guest of honor when you’re grilling. Give the cattle the summer off.

We’d love to be your family physician and guide to getting the most out of life, not just in the summertime. Just call us at 843-815-6468.