Healthy Summer Nutrition Tips

Lauren Fay, RD, CSO, CNSC, is a registered dietitian at the Inova Schar Cancer Institute and Life With Cancer. She is board-certified in oncology nutrition and nutrition support.

Summer is well underway, and with the warmer temperatures (and the ability to spend time in larger groups of our vaccinated family and friends) many of us are moving meal time outside. Here are a few tips for making safe and healthy choices in line with diet recommendations to reduce risk for cancer (and other diseases) while enjoying cooking and dining al fresco.

  • Keep Plants the Focus.  Research shows that consuming a diet made up predominantly of plants (fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and beans) has the ability to reduce risk for cancer in addition to promoting a healthy body composition.  Take advantage of the wide variety of produce available during the summer season at local farmers markets.
  • Choose Carefully While Grilling: Grilling and charbroiling animal proteins (meat, poultry, and fish) leads to formation of potential carcinogens Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs) & Heterocyclic Amines (HCAs).  Try grilling vegetables like portabella mushrooms, onions, and bell peppers or fruits like pineapple and peaches if you are craving a char flavor in your meal.
  • Be Mindful of Temperatures:  When enjoying meals and picnics outside in warmer temperatures, it’s important to be mindful of keeping foods at safe temperatures to prevent foodborne illness. Check out outdoor food safety tips from the FDA.
fruits and vegetables

Oncology Nutrition Classes and Counseling in Northern Virginia

Looking for more information on nutrition and cancer? Check out nutrition classes and counseling opportunities through Inova Life with Cancer:

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