Have a sizzling BBQ – but beware of a ‘calorie binge!’

National BBQ Week until June 5

Have a sizzling BBQ – but beware of a ‘calorie binge!’

It’s a fact: BBQing is the UK’s number 1 summer home leisure activity, with Brits expected to host more than 125 million* back garden barbies this year.

The Bank Holiday marked the start of National BBQ Week: two-thirds of UK households now own a BBQ, with 53% choosing gas over traditional charcoal, and spending an average of £35 a time on food. 56% of men take charge of the tongs, and 8% of people claim to have found love over the coals.

But if every burger needs a bun and no sausage is complete without ketchup, the average diner can expect a surge in their calorie intake, consuming up to a whopping 2000 calories if they’re not careful – a female’s entire daily calorie intake – and that’s without the alcohol!

Emma Brown, nutritionist for calorie counting website and App Nutracheck, has put together some simple tips to keep your calories in check as your BBQ sizzles:

“When we BBQ, most of us end up with the traditional spread of sausages and burgers smothered in sauces, sandwiched between bread rolls, accompanied with mayo-loaded coleslaw and potato salad, and crisps – and you could find yourself eating your whole daily calorie allowance in one go.

“With a bit of thought, you can still enjoy a feast without a calorie binge. People are getting much more creative about what they can put on the BBQ, with fish and exotic meats becoming more popular. Why not try an ostrich steak, kangaroo sausages or even crocodile burgers? All are now readily available on the High Street and are much lower in fat than traditional burgers and sausages.

“Grilled meats, colourful vegetable kebabs, fresh salads made with a rainbow of ingredients, boiled new potatoes and simple, home-made sauces will all drastically cut calories.

“No-one wants to run out of food and many of us end up buying way too much. So work out how much you really need and save your cash and calories”.

Emma’s top BBQ tips:

• Go bread-less. Have a beef burger and sausage – but skip the bread rolls. Instantly saves around 200 calories per roll.

• Fill your plate with salad – just ensure it’s not covered in high calorie dressings. Lemon juice or balsamic vinegar are great low cal alternatives.

• Swap high calorie crisps and dips for vegetable crudités with houmous to cut calories while grazing and waiting for the hot food.

• Avoid adding butter – skip completely on bread rolls, you don’t need it. Top baked potatoes with reduced fat sour cream and use Fry Light spray for frying onions.

• Try an exotic meat such as ostrich, crocodile, kangaroo or buffalo – all much lower in fat and available in many supermarkets.

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About www.nutracheck.co.uk

• Nutracheck is a calorie counter and food diary available via an App and website
• Super-fast and easy to use, the barcode-scanning App lets you add food to your diary in just 2 clicks
• Nutracheck’s unique search shows photos of food to make it easy to spot what you ate from over 180,000 products in the UK food database
• Top rated diet website on www.reviewcentre.com

*Source: FSA

For more information, please call Karen Veness on 07968 049528