Relight Your Fire
By Dietitian, Juliette Kellow BSc RD
Barbecued food can be a great choice if you’re trying to
lose weight, as it’s cooked in a similar way to grilling. That
means you don’t need to add oil to the food – just the
On the downside, most barbecues involve an
abundance of food and drink, so it’s easy to overindulge.
Here’s how to enjoy the barbecue without ruining your diet.
- Fill your plate just once and choose wisely. Barbecued
chicken, lean meat, fish and vegetables are all great choices
but remove the skin from chicken drumsticks or thighs and cut
off any fat on chops or pieces of meat.
- Sausages and beefburgers are high in fat and calories so limit yourself to just one of each. If you’re expected to
contribute some food, take along low-fat or good-quality
sausages or homemade beefburgers made from extra-lean mince.
- If you’re in charge of preparing food, marinate meat
and fish in fat-free marinades or use a barbecue seasoning
rather than oil.
- Beware of chips and dips that are always at barbecues.
Many dips are made with mayo, oil or soured cream and so are
packed with calories. If available, stick to tomato or
yoghurt-based dips such as salsa and tzatziki. And dip cherry
tomatoes and pitta bread rather than tortillas and crisps.
- Fill up with jacket potatoes or bread and salad. Pasta
and rice salads are good choices if they haven’t been made with
mayo or oily dressings. Potato salad and coleslaw should
definitely be avoided! And avoid adding extras, like slices of
cheese, to burgers.
- Instead of mayonnaise, choose tomato ketchup, chilli or sweetcorn relishes to accompany salads – they’re much lower in
fat. But remember they’re still high in salt so you shouldn’t
use too much.