Are Cookouts Bad For Weight Loss?

Grilled Chicken and Veggies

Cooking food on the grill is one of the healthiest ways to prepare meat. No extra oil needs to be added and the fats within the meat, drip away during cooking. The problem with cookouts and weight loss has more to do with how much is consumed and the type of foods associated with summer cookouts. If weight loss is the goal, it is important to maintain the same dietary standards used when eating in as when grilling out. This means smaller portions and healthier food choices.

Too Much of "A Good Thing"

The biggest problem with grilling out is that people will often consume more food simply because more has been prepared. When people have a cookout our BBQ, everyone pitches in and contributes a dish of some sort. That's a great idea, but can lead to an abundance of choices. The more choices that are available, the more a person is likely to over-eat.

If attending a BBQ or cookout is the plan for the weekend, set goals and stick to them. Choose only one dessert. If you have to try two, make sure the portions are much smaller. Don't overdo it on the meat, either. Just because the meat is healthier doesn't mean it's a good idea to eat three or more servings. Anyone following a strict meal plan can always bring their own food and ask the host to toss it on the grill.

Choose Healthier Foods

Instead of the normal cookout and picnic fair, choose salads with light dressing and fresh fruit and vegetable trays. Traditionally, creamy salads and rich desserts are the common fare at most cookouts. If weight loss is something everyone is concerned about, trade the rich, creamy foods for healthier choices. Eating fresh fruits (especially watermelon) and grilled vegetables is a great way to boost energy levels and will keep a person going throughout the afternoon. 


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