Pump up Your Summer Produce
Almost everyone can benefit from eating more vegetables and fruit, and fresh ones are abundant in summer. You can often get great deals on high-quality, in-season produce at farmers’ markets and supermarkets alike. It is easy to stock up on fiber, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals!
How can you turn so much produce into the high-protein, low-calorie meals and snacks you need? The BariatricPal Store has ideas and products that can help you incorporate more vegetables and fruit into your daily routine for better health and weight loss.
Tomatoes, Zucchini, Bell Peppers, and Eggplants
These vegetables seem to go naturally together because they are in season simultaneously and they complement each other in recipes. These are some ways you can use tons of these vegetables.
- Make pasta sauce with a base of tomatoes, olive oil, basil, onions, and garlic, plus bell peppers and zucchini to make it chunky. Serve it over Low-Carb or Protein Pasta.
- Roast bell peppers and eggplants stuffed with seasoned ground turkey or soy crumbles and topped with cheese.
- Add tomatoes and zucchini to scrambled eggs or omelets.
- Use your pasta sauce when making eggplant parmesan with Pork Panko for the breading.
Most berries are high in fiber, antioxidants, and vitamins, and are lower in carbs than some other types of fruit. Still, be sure to have them with a source of protein. Add blueberries or strawberries to Protein Oatmeal, or toss raspberries, strawberries, or blueberries into a smoothie with Protein Powder and almond milk. You can also mix berries into cottage cheese with nuts or seeds.
Spinach, kale, collard greens, and swiss chard are abundant and nutritious. They are easy to use, since they cook fast and you can add them to almost anything, including smoothies and soups. You can blend cooked spinach with yogurt and herbs for a high-protein dip, or make salads with Low-Calorie Salad Dressing and onions, cucumbers, tomatoes, and beans, grilled chicken, or tofu.
Nectarines, watermelon, mangos, and other summer fruit can be irresistible, so why resist? They are excellent choices to satisfy a sweet tooth. You can also use them in recipes to get your fix without overdoing it. For example:
- Make fruit salsa with watermelon, mango, or peach with tomatoes and onions.
- Make marshmallow fruit salad with Calorie-Free Mayo, walnuts, and Sugar-Free Marshmallows.
- Make overnight oatmeal with milk or yogurt and cinnamon or vanilla.
Upping your fruit and vegetable intake can help you lose weight and improve your health, and summer is one of the easiest seasons to do so. You can eat fresh produce guilt-free when you put it in high-protein and great-tasting recipes. The BariatricPal Store has the aids you need to do that!
- Alex Brecher