Healthy Food Options for July Fourth

When you are making an effort to eat healthy, wholesome foods, holiday feasting may be a source of stress and frustration.  Most holidays have accompanying traditions, and quite a few of those traditions are centered around food.  If you have dietary restrictions due to allergies, food sensitivities, or weight loss goals, figuring out how to enjoy holiday food traditions without feeling deprived is key.

We've compiled a list of healthier alternatives to some of the foods Americans associate with the 4th of July.  You might consider bringing one of these along to the neighborhood potluck or family barbecue.  Chances are, you aren't the only person who will appreciate a healthier alternative.

Celebrating with friends, and don't want to ask for special dietary accommodations?  Sometimes simple changes can make indulgences less indulgent.  For instance, omitting the bun and stacking your burger with veggies eliminates calories while adding fiber and nutrients.

bunless-burger

Eating a vegan or plant-based diet doesn't mean you can't enjoy food from the grill.  Try making Sweet Potato Black Bean Burgers as a delicious alternative to beef burgers.sweet-potato-burger

There are lots of great salad options out there to set down next to the potato salad at the picnic table.  Toss some blueberries into this Arugula Salad with Berries and Goat Cheese to create a delicious and patriotic offering.berry-spinach-salad

A veggie tray is always a welcome addition as an appetizer or side dish at casual parties.  Cut the calories and increase the protein and nutrients by omitting the traditional ranch dip, and sharing this Creamy Greek Yogurt Spinach Dip, instead.spinach-dip

Another fun appetizer with patriotic flair is this American flag-themed fruit and cheese tray.  Use your choice of white cheese, or even a non-dairy or vegan cheese (several options are available locally at Whole Foods and Sprouts).watermelon-salad

Made without processed sugars, these Red, White, and Blue Berry Colada Popsicles make a festive and refreshing treat after the parade or before the fireworks.berry-yogurt-pops

Here's a delicious alternative to a berry trifle: a Berry Yogurt Parfait.  This particular recipe elevates an otherwise common-place offering with homemade Greek-style yogurt.  Delicious!berry-yogurt-parfait

Angel food cake is still cake, which technically is full of sugar.  But we'd like to make a case for angel food cake being a lighter alternative to richer dessert offerings.  Layer it up with Yogurt Cream and berries for a dessert that looks and tastes more decadent than than it actually is.berry-angel-cake

We'd love to hear more about how you plan to add clean, healthy food to your holiday celebrations.  Leave us a note in the comments below, or tag us in you social media snaps.  Happy Fourth of July!