Simple Summer Grilling Advice

Summer is the time for BBQ’s, bikinis and beverages.  You can still indulge in some of your favorite foods and beverages AND still look good in your swimsuit! 

A little fitness and plain old common sense goes a long way. Vail Valley's largest health and wellness center, the award-winning Aria Spa & Club, is renowned for its precision approach to personal fitness and all-encompassing wellness.  Aria Spa & Club offers an extensive variety of Vail fitness classes seven days a week - from lessons with our award-winning fitness instructors to vertical training with TRX or FitWall to core strengthening with Vail Pilates and Yoga to heart-pumping fun with spinning and sports conditioning, and or course, racquet sports

Aria Spa & Club offers individual and family memberships for residents and non-residents. Memberships feature access to classes and facilities, member BBQ’s, as well as incentives that can be redeemed at Vail Cascade. For more information on memberships, please call 970.476.7400. 

So enjoy some of these guilt-free grilling tips from and let Aria Spa & Club help you navigate through a summer of fun, food and fitness.


Hot Dog
Typical nitrate-and sodium-filled dogs get 84% of their calories from fat.
Better: A low-fat turkey dog.
Best: A low-sodium uncured chicken dog like Trader Joe's, which has only 60 calories and 250 mg of sodium.

Hot Dog: Bun
Skip the potato roll (puffed up with sweeteners and refined flour).
Better: A 100% whole wheat bun.
Best: A sprouted-grain bun adds 6 g of fiber plus beneficial plant-based enzymes that aid digestion. Find them in the grocery-store freezer section. 

Hot Dog: Mustard
It's low calorie, but sodium can run high, says Karen Ansel, MS, RD.
Better: Yellow mustard--it has less than half the sodium of Dijon.
Best: Try a sodium-free squirt of fresh lemon juice for a tart, bright flavor.

Hot Dog: Cheese Sauce
This creamy topper is a troublemaker.
Better: Use 2 tablespoons of shredded reduced-fat Cheddar, cutting out 4 1/2 g of the fat in the jarred stuff.
Best: Sauerkraut contains probiotics, and it's virtually fat free.
(Search: The benefits of probiotics)

Hot Dog: Chili
Meat chili adds 55 calories, no fiber, and 242 mg of sodium.
(Video: Sneak more fiber into your meals)
Better: Canned bean chili--1/4 cup veggie chili provides 48 calories, 3 g of fiber, and 195 mg of sodium.
Best: A homemade bean chili that curtails the salt.

Burger: Beef
An all-beef patty is loaded with fat.
Better: Bison, which has 152 calories and 7 g of fat.
Best: "Mix equal parts lean ground beef or turkey with ground mushrooms to instantly cut calories in half," Ansel says.

Burger: Bun
Today's plus-size buns add 200 calories.
Better: Switch to a whole wheat deli thin. "That saves you 100 calories and adds 5 g of good-for-you fiber," Ansel says.
Best: Wrap your burger in a lettuce leaf.

Burger: Mayo
The white stuff is not the right stuff.
Better: A canola oil version that has half the fat and calories of the typical kind, in addition to heart-smart omega-3s.
Best: Mashed avocado.

Burger: Lettuce
Iceberg doesn't pull its weight nutritionally.
Better: With more vitamins, romaine is an upgrade.
Best: "Use antioxidant-rich spinach or kale," says Bethany Thayer, RD.

Burger: Pickles
Bread-and-butter and sweet-and-sour pickles can add calories because they have added sugar.
Better: Dill pickles, which are sugar free.
Best: Cucumber slices flavored with vinegar.

Burger: Ketchup
It's loaded with salt.
Better: "Try fresh sliced summer tomatoes instead," Ansel says.
Best: Roasted red peppers, for the extra vitamin C.

Burger: Bacon
Pass on pork.
Better: Turkey bacon, but make sure you check the label, because brands vary.
Best: Soy-based vegetarian "bacon," which has about 20 calories and almost no fat per slice.

Burger: Cheese
Full-fat slices do you no favors.
Better: Packaged cheese sliced extra thin, to save about 50 calories per slice.
Best: A reduced-fat, low-sodium cheese.

To post a comment, type your comment and select Post Comment at the bottom of the form; after being approved your comment will appear directly underneath the post you replied to.