Get Set to Barbecue!
Fire up the barbecue!
With the gorgeous summer weather in full swing, it's the perfect time for ditching the kitchen and firing up the barbecue! Barbecues are a way of life for most Australians - an easy way to entertain and great for family get-togethers.
Barbecues can provide plenty of healthy choices, as long as you choose carefully and watch out for hidden calories and fat. Check out our handy tips for healthy barbecuing.
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Seafood is a good choice for the barbeque
Whether you are going to a barbecue or hosting one yourself, there are plenty of opportunities for making healthy choices. BYO is a great policy when it comes to barbecuing as you can ensure that you'll have low-fat foods on hand. Bring along a salad or a low-fat dip when you're visiting friends or family so that you can be sure you'll have something healthy to nibble on.
Here are some hints for making healthy barbecue choices:
For a fun way to find out how the calories of barbecue foods add up, try our interactive Barbecue Create-A-Meal - you can find a link to it at the bottom of this article.
What about alcohol?
Keep an eye on how many glasses of wine you're drinking
When you're outside socialising and enjoying a barbecue, it's easy to knock back a couple of beers or several glasses of wine. This makes it even easier to grab a handful of chips or an extra sausage or two, as alcohol can lessen your resolve. Try to drink only one or two glasses of wine or beer, spaced out with lots of water or diet soft drinks in between. This way you'll be much stronger than if you throw caution to the wind and indulge in excess alcohol.
Alcohol also lessens the body's ability to burn fat. The body treats alcohol as a toxin, so it gives priority to metabolising alcohol over other calories consumed. This means that any excess food you eat while drinking is stored as fat. And a lot of this fat is stored around the belly area – a health danger zone.
Salty foods, such as sausages, will create a continual thirst for several hours. Quench your thirst with water or diet soft drinks, not alcohol.
For more articles on alcohol, check out the 'Alcohol' section in the Library. You can also consult the alcohol guide in the Pocket Calorie, Fat & Carbohydrate Counter.
Next: Summer food safety
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