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Summer Diets: 3 Light Meal Plans To Keep Your Summer Shape

Posted by Dr. Kris Wusterhausen on June 13, 2019

As summer approaches, it’s not uncommon to see friends and family ramping up their exercise routines. The weather is warm, the days are longer, and we’re energized by abundant sunshine – all the ingredients necessary to ensure we’re more active.


Everyone wants to look good, whether they’re running through the surf at the beach or having friends over for a barbecue.


However, while more attention is given to our exercise routines in the summer, our diets tend to remain largely unchanged. This isn’t to say we’re eating wrong, but we can be doing so much better!


With grilling season upon us and farmers markets popping up to offer a bounty of fresh, clean, healthy ingredients, it’s the perfect opportunity to expand our menu options. By trying new combinations, textures, and flavors, you can replenish the vitamins and minerals you may have missed out on over the long winter months, retain your summer shape, and do it all without feeling like you have missed out on anything!


If you’re looking for simple, summer-friendly meals that pack a healthy punch, we’ve brought three of our favorite recipes to help kick off a menu-broadening, shape-saving, health-building summer to remember.

Gazpacho
a bowl of gazpacho
Who wouldn’t love a bowl of cool, vine-ripened tomato and cucumber gazpacho on a hot summer day?  Filled with antioxidants and vitamins, Alton Brown’s gazpacho is bright, clean, and loaded with layers of flavor that will make your tastebuds happy and your body healthy!

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 pounds vine-ripened tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped
  • Tomato juice
  • 1 cup cucumber, peeled, seeded and chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
  • 1/2 cup chopped red onion
  • 1 small jalapeno, seeded and minced
  • 1 medium garlic clove, minced
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon toasted, ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons fresh basil leaves, chiffonade

Directions:

Step 1: Boil approximately 3-quarts of water over high heat.

Step 2: Mark an X on the bottom of each tomato with a paring knife and drop into boiling water for approximately 15 seconds. Remove and transfer to an ice back until cool enough to handle. Peel, core, and seed the tomatoes, putting the seeds and pulp into a fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth to press out the remaining juice. Use bottled tomato juice to bring any reserves you save up to a total of 1 cup.

Step 3: Dice the tomatoes and add with juice, cucumber, bell pepper, red onion, jalapeno, garlic clove, olive oil, lime juice, balsamic vinegar, Worcestershire, cumin, salt and pepper and combine. Puree 1 ½ cups of the mixture with blender for 15 to 20 seconds. Return to bowl with rest of mixture, stir, cover, and chill for 2 hours up to overnight. Serve with fresh sliced basil and some whole wheat pita chips.


Grilled Shrimp with Mango, Lime, and Radish Salsa

grilled shrimp


Grilled shrimp provides a smoky flavor to a summer salsa high in fiber, low in calories, and rich in flavor. It’s also a great source for antioxidants and vitamins A and C. Satisfying and so good for you, this winner from Tyler Florence is a must have for every summer menu.

Ingredients:

  • 12 large shrimp
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Salsa:

  • 2 limes
  • 2 mangoes, diced
  • 4 to 5 red radishes, diced
  • 1 red onion, diced
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1/2 bunch fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Directions:

Step 1: Toss prawns with olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. Marinade for approximately 30 minutes while the grill heats up. Grill prawns on each side until pink. Depending on size, this could take about 5 minutes.

Step 2: Remove the peel and pith (white membrane) from the limes and cut between the membranes sections to remove the lime segments (supremes). Put these "supremes" into a bowl and add the remaining ingredients. Mix and season with salt and pepper. Place warm grilled prawns on a platter and top with salsa.


Grilled Steak and Papaya Salad

grilled steak


Steak provides the focal point for this delicious, light, sweet, and spicy take on a summer salad.  Full of iron, beta carotene, and vitamins C, E, and B12, this dish is a great alternative to a traditional iceberg salad.

Ingredients:

  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 Thai bird chile, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons honey
  • 1/4 cup peanut oil
  • 1 1/2 pounds beef tenderloin
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • Papaya Dressing, recipe follows

Papaya Dressing:

  • 1 shallot, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 Thai bird chiles, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint
  • 1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 8 large red romaine lettuce leaves, cut into strips
  • 1 bunch watercress
  • 1 large green papaya, peeled and thinly shredded
  • 2 carrots, peeled and thinly shredded
  • 1/4 cup chopped roasted peanuts, for garnish
  • Chopped cilantro, for garnish

Directions:

Step1: Blend garlic, chile, soy sauce, lime juice, honey, and oil in a mini food processor until smooth. Place beef in pan or baking dish and pour mixture over beef. Turn to coat. Marinate in the refrigerator for 1 hour.

Step 2: Preheat grill to medium-high. Remove beef from the marinade, season with salt and pepper, and grill until charred and cooked to medium-rare (about 10 to 12 minutes). Remove from grill and let rest 10 minutes before slicing into 1/4-inch thick slices.


Papaya Dressing:

Step 3: Whisk together the shallot, chiles, mint, vinegar, sugar, and fish sauce. Set aside. In another bowl, toss the lettuce leaves and watercress together and then arrange the mixture on a platter.

Step 4: Evenly distribute the papaya and carrots over the lettuce. Drizzle with a few tablespoons of the dressing. Arrange steak on top and drizzle steak with more dressing. Garnish with chopped peanuts and cilantro.

Your Health Is Only As Good As Your Diet

As we age, we lose vitality. We might find ourselves feeling more tired, slower to recover from exertion, and frustrated with the signs of aging. Eating right and staying active are huge components to our ability to feel better, longer, as we age. But we can be doing so much more to slow down the aging process.

If you want to:

  • Increase your energy level
  • Enhance your endurance
  • Promote mental clarity
  • Boost your memory and
  • Decrease your risk of getting sick

Consider contacting The Resurge Clinic today! Our dedicated staff is ready to assist you with personal training, nutrition, and rejuvenation therapy: tools that help you feel strong, age well, and stay healthy.

It’s no secret that diet and exercise are important to maintaining a good quality of life. Why not let our professionals show you how? Call today for a free consultation!


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Topics: Men’s Health, Women’s Health, Age Management, Overall Health