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6 Healthy BBQ Options That Won't Get You Uninvited from the Cookout

Once the weather heats up and the kids are out of school, it can only mean one thing: BBQ season is underway. Although grilling is a great way to enjoy a healthy meal, too often cookouts are filled with fattening options that will do anything but have you wanting to go for a dip in the water. You don’t have to skip the temptations of barbecues, you just have to choose wisely and try to bring your own foods whenever possible so that you know what to do when faced with BBQ dishes.

Here are some tips on how to best face down your next cookout:

In terms of entrees, go for chicken, fish or seafood. Ribs, brisket, burgers, and steaks are all classic options but they are also super high in fat. Limit your consumptions and instead choose leaner proteins.

When it comes to sides, go for vinaigrettes and skip anything that is mayonnaise based (like coleslaw, macaroni salad, and potato salad) or covered in cheese — like macaroni and cheese. Instead, opt for grilled veggies, a fresh green salad or a vinegar-based coleslaw.

Similarly, skip baked beans that are filled with sugar, and extra fat. Also be wary of starches including white bread slices, buttery rolls, and fries. Try a vinegary bean salad instead.

Corn may or may not be off limits. A simple ear of grilled corn can be a nice treat but skip buttery, sour cream filled salads and casseroles.

Limit your alcohol consumption to light beers and unsweetened ice tea. Wine coolers, margaritas, daiquiris, piña coladas, and heavy beers come with a lot of extra sugar and excess calories that can be easily avoided. Lemonade and sweet tea also have loads of sugar that you can avoid.

If you have a sweet tooth, opt for fresh fruit rather than berry pies and cobblers to finish off your meal.

[Image via Shutterstock]

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