Want more tips and tricks for reaching your health goals? Join Lark!

Take our 2-minute survey to find out if you’re eligible to join Lark which includes a smart scale and the chance to earn a Fitbit®.
Start now
*Terms and conditions apply
Close icon

Interested in more health & wellness content from Lark? Let’s stay in touch.

Sign up below for more information from Lark
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Close icon
< Back to Resource Center
< Back to Member Blog

10 Tips for a Healthy Fourth of July

Natalie
Stein
June 27, 2023
Fireworks
Lark

Are you at risk of prediabetes?

Lark can help lower your risk for Type 2 Diabetes through healthy habit formation, and data tracking.
Height: 5 ft 4 in
4' 0"
7' 0"
Weight: 160 lbs
90 lbs
500 lbs
LOW RISK
Risk Level
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

What could 15% weight loss mean for you?

Feel more energetic and significantly reduce your risk of chronic conditions like diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

By clicking the button above, you agree to the Lark Terms & Conditions, Privacy Policy, and SMS Terms.

Current Weight: 250 lbs
120 lbs
500 lbs
Your weight loss could be*
- - lbs
Your new weight: -- lbs
Am I eligible?

By clicking the button above, you agree to the Lark Terms & Conditions, Privacy Policy, and SMS Terms.

*Results may vary. Based on the average weight loss in three, 68-week clinical trials of patients without diabetes who reached and maintained a dose of 2.4mg/week of GLP-1 treatment, along with a reduced-calorie diet and increased physical activity. View study here.
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

In this article: 

  • There are many ways to be healthy at summer cookouts, barbecues, and picnics.
  • Here are 10 tips to help you make better choices for health and weight loss at gatherings.
  • Lark can help you make healthier food choices to support healthy living and weight loss every day of the year, no matter the occasion.

The vast majority of Americans celebrate Independence Day in some way, whether it’s a day off of work, traveling to visit family or friends, or attending a parade or a cookout. These types of gatherings can have a lot of unhealthy food, but you can still make choices to lose weight and support better health. Here are 10 tips for a healthy fourth of July or summer gathering. 

1. Eat Well

Though fatty and high-carb choices may be available, there can also be a lot of lean and nutritious choices at a cookout or barbecue. If you’re hosting, you can be sure to serve some healthy options. If you’ll be a guest, you can ask what will be available and adjust accordingly. For example, you can bring a pack of veggie dogs or a pack of chicken breasts to put on the grill and share with other like-minded guests who want to eat well.

2. Smart Hydration

Staying hydrated may take some effort if you’re outdoors more than usual, especially if it’s a hot or humid day. Make sure water will be available wherever you are planning to go, or carry a water bottle with you if you’re not sure when your next chance to hydrate will be. Sparkling water, unsweetened iced tea, black coffee, and plain iced coffee are all good choices.

Skipping sugar-sweetened beverages can help you avoid extra calories, not to mention excess carbs and sugar. Here are examples of sugar-sweetened beverages.

  • Soft drinks
  • Sports drinks
  • Energy drinks
  • Lemonade and juices
  • Sweet tea
  • Blended coffee drinks

3. Bring Something Healthy to Eat

If you bring your own healthy food, you’re sure to have something nutritious to eat. You can bring a single portion if you’re going to a parade or large party. If it’s a smaller gathering, you might feel more comfortable bringing something to share. Here are some examples.

  • A package of veggie burgers or plant-based hot dogs for grilling
  • Some sliced zucchini, eggplants, or bell peppers that are ready to throw on the grill
  • A nutritious salad, such as the Roasted Vegetable Salad listed below
  • A watermelon, cut in cubes or wedges
  • A basket of peach halves to grill
  • A platter of cut, raw vegetables with hummus or guacamole

Roasted Vegetable Salad with Whole-Grain Pasta

Makes 12 Servings

Ingredients:

  • 12 ounces of whole-grain pasta, such as penne
  • 1 diced onion
  • 3 cloves of garlic, peeled and sliced
  • 2 zucchini, chopped roughly
  • 1 eggplant, cut into cubes
  • 2 bell peppers, roughly chopped
  • 3 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons of balsamic or red wine vinegar
  • 1 cup of fresh basil, chopped
  • 4 ounces of grated Parmesan cheese or crumbled feta cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. 
  2. Cook the pasta according to the package instructions. Drain and set aside.
  3. Place the onion, garlic, zucchini, eggplant, and bell peppers in a large bowl. Add the olive oil and vinegar, and toss to coat. Place the vegetables on a baking sheet and cook for 15-20 minutes, or until they begin to soften.
  4. Toss the vegetables and pasta in a large bowl. Add the basil and cheese, and season to taste.

4. Use Your Plate As a Tool

An empty plate is like a blank canvas with unlimited opportunity. Will you take advantage of the chance to have a healthy, festive meal? Start by filling your plate half or mostly full with vegetables, such as grilled or roasted vegetables or green salad. Add a serving of lean protein, such as a veggie dog or chicken breast. Then, use the small remaining space on your plate for a small portion of a treat, if you see one that you’ve been craving.

5. Choose a Treat

Speaking of treats, is there one that you’ve been looking forward to all year? Have you been craving a slice of red, white, and blue sheet cake? Does your neighbor make the best potato salad for July 4th? You don’t have to give up your favorite treat, just serve yourself a small amount of what you love. Then sit down and savor every bite while you eat it.

6. Keep Moving

Any movement you can do during the day can improve your health and make you feel better. It’s a good idea to take a walk or work out before the festivities start. Consider asking a friend or guest to meet you early for a walk. Remember to stand up and move around every 30 minutes throughout the day to keep blood circulating. Logging your activity with Lark can help motivate you to stay active. 

7. Sunscreen

The American Cancer Society says to use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30. Apply it to areas of your skin that are exposed to the sun, and reapply as needed throughout the day. The UV index can be high mid-summer, and it’s best to prevent burns.

8. Watch the Clock

You might eat more than you planned if you eat throughout the whole party. It can be a helpful strategy to only eat for a period of, say, 20 or 30 minutes during the event. Otherwise, you might keep munching for hours.

Planning when to eat and when not to eat can be even more important if your day will include multiple events, such as a morning parade, a mid-day barbecue, and an evening pre-fireworks dinner. You might want to plan to have only one or two platefuls at each event so you don’t overeat.

9. Safety First

Along with being safe and legal with fireworks, it’s important to consider food safety, especially during summer months. The Food and Drug Administration says that 1 in 6 Americans get a foodborne illness each year. Creamy salads and chicken are a few common culprits when it comes to food poisoning. Some safe food handling practices include washing hands often, avoiding cross contamination, and following recommended temperature guidelines for serving and storing food.

10. Sleep Well

Are you staying out late watching fireworks? Then get everything in your home ready before you leave so all you have to do when you get back is get ready for bed. That way, you can still get a good night’s sleep after the show. 

How Lark Can Help

Fun is part of life, and it can be a healthy part of life, too. By selecting nutritious foods and following a few other tips, you can have a healthy Independence Day this year. More help is available when you use Lark. Lark can help you make good choices every day to improve health and manage weight, and you can access Lark 24/7.

Click here to see if you may be eligible to join Lark today!

About Lark

Lark helps you eat better, move more, stress less, and improve your overall wellness. Lark’s digital coach is available 24/7 on your smartphone to give you personalized tips, recommendations, and motivation to lose weight and prevent chronic conditions like diabetes.

Read more

Get healthier with Lark & earn a Fitbit®

Lose weight, get more active, and eat better.
take 1-minute survey

See if Ozempic® is covered by insurance

Curb cravings and reach your weight loss goals!
AM I ELIGIBLE?

Similar posts

Actions to Get Back on TrackActions to Get Back on Track

Actions to Get Back on Track

Lapses can happen to anyone who’s making healthy changes. After identifying factors leading to a lapse, it’s time to address them.

Learn more
Bouncing Back After a Setback: Anything But Failure!Bouncing Back After a Setback: Anything But Failure!

Bouncing Back After a Setback: Anything But Failure!

It can be frustrating to fall short when there is something you could have done to prevent the setback.

Learn more
Turn Setbacks into Steps ForwardTurn Setbacks into Steps Forward

Turn Setbacks into Steps Forward

That is especially true when you’re making changes to manage weight or improve health because it’s an experience that’s full of challenges and self-exploration.

Learn more