Summertime means lots of time outdoors, in the sun, far away from your kitchen. At some point, you're likely to find yourself at the beach showing off all the hard work you've been doing to get into swimsuit-ready shape. After all your dedication and hard work, it can be easy to succumb to unhealthy beach-side snacks. But you don't have to undo all the hard work you've done or feel deprived. Instead of grabbing the usual unhealthy culprits from the concession stand, bring some of these tasty and healthy treats along with you that will leave you looking and feeling great all summer long.
1. Apple Slices and Almond Butter
If you need something sweet and savory, slice up some apples and bring a bit of almond butter with you to dip it in. The fresh nutrients, carbs, protein and healthy fats all balance each other for a complete snack. You'll feel full and energized, rather than weighed down and sluggish. This snack will ward off hunger until you get home from the beach and can make a meal. Look for raw, unsalted and/or no-sugar-added almond butter to keep it healthy.
2. Veggie Sticks and Hummus
If you're looking for something with a little crunch or something you can dip, try veggie sticks and hummus. Carrots or celery sticks provide you with lots of vitamins and nutrients, and are low in calories, so you get the crunch you need without loading up on greasy chips. The hummus provides a healthy fat from chickpeas and olive oil that you can feel good about dipping your veggies into.
3. Frozen Bananas
If you are want a creamy, frozen treat and have a super cold beach-side cooler, try bringing frozen bananas. Frozen bananas help you replenish your electrolytes after sweating in the sun all day and are also sweet to satisfy any sugary ice cream cravings. Peel them first and store them in a water-proof container, so you can simply grab a banana from the cooler and cool down with your fresh, frozen treat.
4. Coconut Water
To rehydrate and replenish, try coconut water rather than soda or sports drinks. Coconut water is naturally sweet, without any added sugar, and contains electrolytes—just like a sports drink—to rehydrate you faster after a long day in the sun. Coconut water is also lower in calories per serving than most sodas and sports drinks, without artificial colors or sweeteners, making it healthier all around.
5. Brown Rice Sushi with Avocado, Carrots and Cucumbers
If you need a beach meal on the go, skip the burger and fries and consider picking up or making some brown rice sushi to take with you. Skip the fish, and stick with vegetables to ensure it doesn't go bad in the heat. Look for brown rice, healthy fats from avocado, and some fresh veggies for extra crunch and vitamins. The combination of whole grains, healthy fats and protein help to make it a healthy and filling meal that's easy to store and eat at the beach.