There’s something about the seasonal change to blessedly warmer weather that’s like a permission slip for more play time. Weekend beach trips, outdoor cookouts, and sneaking out of work a little early to soak up the late-afternoon sun all take precedence over the wakeup-workout-work loop that’s par for the course in milder months. But with no set routine, it can be tricky to figure out how to stick to the healthy habits that make you feel good year-round.
If anyone knows how to roll with the punches while maintaining a healthy lifestyle, it’s Daphne Oz. The chef, author, TV host, and mom of three is used to being thrown into various projects and traveling all over the place.
When Oz stopped by the Well+Good office recently, I took the opportunity to ask her how exactly to keep everything on track while still enjoying every second of summer. Not surprisingly, she had some pretty great tips.
“On the one hand, it’s easier to eat healthy during the summer and to cook because there’s so much amazing produce that’s beautiful and good on its own,” she says. “You can walk to the farmers’ market and get fresh peas and asparagus, ricotta cheese, and some olive oil and salt. Your meal is done and you barely have to do anything at all.”
If you’re traveling or have fun weekend plans with friends (hello barbecue season), Oz says to go for it and eat what you want—just be mindful during the week so you don’t get entirely thrown off entirely. Speaking of weekend noshing with friends, she has a killer healthy dish all her friends love: raw, shaved baby Brussels sprouts, drizzled with olive oil and topped with fresh herbs. “For me, herbs are what makes something over-the-top delicious,” Oz says. Her go-tos for this dish: parsley and mint—but experiment with your faves.
Filling your plate with simple, vibrant summer produce during the weekend and enjoying what you want is her key to staying balanced all season long. Then, you can focus on more important things: like what pool float is going to replace your unicorn this year.
Here are three healthy summer recipes even picky eaters will love. And if you want something to sip on: try this matcha margarita.
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