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NOURISH

Energize your summer with these five food tips

Making nutrition a priority can be trickier than ever during busy summer months. But remember: food is your fuel and summer is the perfect time to be mindful of healthy food choices.

Naturally energize with food

Munch more melon

Watermelon, honeydew and cantaloupe are packed with energizing vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Depending on the melon, you can consume a good amount of vitamins C and B and potassium in just ½ cup. Melons also contain 90 percent water which can help keep you hydrated. Add a ½ cup of melon to your lunch or make a fresh melon salad.

Pack in protein

Protein aids in extending energy and keeps you feeling full longer. It's also essential for muscle repair and building. For all-day energy, add high-quality protein to your meals. Choose poultry, lean meats, low-fat dairy products, nuts or nut butters. Vary your protein to make sure you're getting all essential amino acids.

Count on complex carbs

Avoid energy "ups and downs" by including carbs. Because carbs tend to break down more slowly they give your body more consistent energy. Include whole grain cereals, breads or pastas, fruits, vegetables, beans or lentils in your summer meals. Swap white bread for a whole grain option. Balance carbs with protein and healthy fats.

Wet your whistle

Hydrate! The human body is more than 50 percent water. When you're dehydrated, you can become fatigued. Try sparkling waters, teas or infuse your water with your favorite fruit or vegetable such as cucumbers, lemons or berries. Or drink a homemade, healthy fruit smoothie, fresh-squeezed juice or herbal iced tea. Remember—fluids can also be obtained from some of your foods—such as the previously mentioned melons!

Eat for peak energy

A key to keeping you and your family's energy levels up during the summer is to grab a nutritious meal or snack every two to three hours. Healthy snack options include trail mix with dried fruit and nuts, yogurt, popcorn, a fresh peach or nectarine, or whole-wheat crackers with peanut butter.

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