Thursday, June 16, 2011

Fruit Snacks

A few months back on the Dr. Oz show, he shared an invaluable snacking tip!!! From that tip, I learned how to set things up in the kitchen so there would be less snacking on chips, cookies and ice cream, and more snacking on fruits. It is too valuable to keep to myself, so I'm passing it on.

It is soo simple that you will probably wonder why you didn't do this earlier.

When you're at the supermarket, buy more fruits. Ok, that's a no brainer. But wait, there's more!

To save time and to get you and your family to eat the fruits, buy them already cut and ready to eat.  Yes, you will pay a little more for cut up fruits, but it'll be worth it. I mean, come on, eating chips, cookies or ice cream is so easy that it's no wonder so many of us snack on them. There's no preparation required.

Fruits, on the other hand, require preparation. Eliminate the preparation requirement and they're on the same footing as the fatty snacks.

Buying fruits already cut is worth it.

If you have time and the inclination, you can buy the fruits and prepare them yourself. I love watermelon and always buy a quarter cut. It's more expensive than a whole watermelon, but it works out because a whole watermelon would be too much. A lot of it would go to waste here.

As soon as I get home from the market, I cut the watermelon in slices. Then I separate the fruit from the rind. I cut it in chunks, seed it and put it in a container. I drain the water and stick it in the fridge. And that puts the watermelon on an equal footing with the junk food snacks when it comes to convenience. It's just as easy to eat the watermelon as it is to eat the fatty stuff. Note, drain the watermelon container whenever you take it out of the fridge because if you don't, it might get slimy and spoil ahead of its time. When you drain it, you are left with delicious crisp watermelon chunks. YUM!!! And because you seeded it when you cut it into chunks, you don't even have to worry about the seeds when you pop them into your mouth!

I prepare strawberries, avocados and other fruits like that, too. Having ready to eat fruits around makes it much easier to eat healthy.

A note about strawberries. I bought a tub of strawberries recently and learned something. See the bright yellow and green things on the skin of the strawberries in the pic below?

Here's a clearer pic:

Well, those bright green and yellow things change the taste of strawberries. Strawberries with those things on them taste different--they taste awful to me! Eeuuww!!! I don't like it, so I started skinning the strawberries. They taste like strawberries without those things on them.

I usually don't prepare fruits like apples or oranges ahead of time.

Peeling an orange is no big deal, so having to peel them just before you eat them isn't off putting.

I don't prepare apples ahead of time because they would oxidize and turn brown when saved. Coating the slices with a little lemon juice or vinegar would keep them from turning brown, but it's just as easy to eat the apple on the spot. So, for me, preparing them ahead of time would require too much unnecessary work.

If you really are serious about adding more fruits to your diet, keep 100% fruit juices around so you won't drink sugar. I'm not kidding and I'm not getting wise. Sodas and other sweetened drinks are mostly sugar. When you drink them, you are essentially drinking sugar. One hundred percent fruit juice is much healthier!

Don't overdo on the fruit juice, though. It's healthy, but it does pack a lot of calories. Too much and you'll put on some unnecessary poundage.

Hope this helps you to eat healthier this Summer!

Make this day a good one!