Healthiest Cookout Favorites

on May 18, 2012

Grilled fish vs. grilled chicken

If you are counting every calorie or cutting fat to the bone, go with the fish. Four ounces of grilled tilapia has 109 calories, 1.9 grams of fat, and 20 grams of protein. The same amount of grilled chicken breast, without skin, has 121 calories, 4.7 grams of fat and 18 grams of protein.


Hamburger vs. fried fish sandwich

Frying negates just about everything good about fish. A fried fish sandwich has more than 100 calories and twice the fat of a plain old burger. It also has about 100 mg more sodium. Stick with the burger.


Hot dog vs. hamburger

The hot dog wins if you just look at calories and fat. An all-beef hotdog and bun has 252 calories and 14g of fat compared with 361 calories and 21g fat in a conservatively sized 3 oz. hamburger patty with bun. But the hot dog is loaded with sodium ... 700mg of it, vs. 275 in the burger ... and it has cancer-promoting nitrites. Stick with nitrite-free hot dogs (which also tend to be lower in sodium), or make healthy burgers at home.


Salad vs. coleslaw

If the coleslaw on the buffet is of the traditional type—loaded with mayonnaise ... stick with a small salad, dressing on the side. But if it’s made with a vinaigrette dressing, go for it. Cabbage has so many cancer-fighting nutrients, it’s good to find ways to enjoy the raw stuff. Try a lower-fat Asian coleslaw, made with sesame oil and rice wine vinegar.


Yellow corn vs. white corn

Go yellow! Compared with white corn, yellow corn has more carotenoids, specifically lutein and zeaxanthin, both good for your eyes. Plus, yellow corn usually has less sugar than white corn.