Summer is heating up, and with it comes lots of not-so-healthy treats. Every summer, we are tempted to buy sugar-filled goodies to keep us cool. Unfortunately, these goodies do often provide us with empty calories that offer little to no nutritional value. We have created a short list of simple swaps you can make this summer to keep you cool and healthy and help you ditch these treats.
- Ditch the ice cream
We know what you’re thinking…we love ice cream too. Try this “Nice” Cream recipe that will give you the rich and creamy texture of ice cream and the sweet and indulgent taste without all of the saturated fats, added sugars, and artificial flavors that are often found in ice creams.
Skip the cone and opt for this super simple 2 ingredient recipe for “Nice” Cream:
1 frozen banana
¼ cup unsweetened almond milk
- Blend frozen banana and milk until smooth.
- Top with your favorite sundae toppings like nuts, berries, or coconut flakes, or drizzle with your favorite nut butter!
This recipe will satisfy your sweet tooth, and keep you cool on those hot summer days!
- Skip the Sugary Drink Mixes and Diet Sodas
Staying hydrated in the summer is extremely important, and we encourage drinking lots of fluids throughout the day, but skip the sugary drink powders or diet sodas. These often contain ingredients that are not doing us any favors like artificial flavors and colors, preservatives, and added sugars. A great way to stay hydrated is to sip on water infused with some of your favorite seasonal flavors. Here is a recipe to get you inspired:
Strawberry Mint Limeade
16 oz of cold water
1 small lime
4 mint leaves
3 large strawberries
1 cup ice cubes
- Thoroughly wash your produce
- Add the ingredients to a pitcher and enjoy within 24 hours
Note: the measurements of this recipe can always be changed to adjust the intensity of the flavor to your personal preference. The best part about infused water is that the combinations are endless! Try this with any of your favorite fresh herbs and produce. Some other great additions include lemons, basil, berries, or cucumbers.
- Opt for Homemade Ice Pops
Ice pops are a staple of almost every kid’s summer diet. They’re refreshing, sweet, and downright delicious, but reading the ingredient label might make you cringe. Much like the ice cream and sugary drinks mentioned earlier, they are loaded with added sugars like High Fructose Corn Syrup, artificial flavors, and artificial colors. For those of you who don’t want to say goodbye to ice pops, we’ve got you covered. Try these homemade pops for a simple swap this summer that won’t turn your mouth funny colors:
Pineapple Paradise Pops:
2 +1/2 cup chopped pineapple
1 cup coconut water
½ cup unsweetened coconut flakes
- Blend 2 cups of pineapple and coconut water until smooth
- Add in coconut flakes and additional ½ cup of pineapple chunks
- Pour into ice pop molds and freeze
Note: molds can be found at most grocery stores
Make these three simple swaps for your healthiest and happiest summer yet!