Watermelon Soup with Some Kick








If “yummy” was a food group, watermelon would be included in it.  A summer favorite, it is filling and satisfying on a warm weather day. This week’s recipe is provided courtesy of Teresa Grasso, RD, CDE, outpatient nutritionist at Saint Peter’s University Hospital. She found it on http://www.choosemyplate.gov/healthy-eating-tips/sample-menus-recipes/WatermelonGazpacho.pdf.  To make this Tasty Thursday recipe combine watermelon with some savory ingredients to create a surprising and refreshing simple and quick gazpacho-style dish.

Many studies have suggested that there may be some benefits to eating lycopene-rich foods such as watermelon, tomatoes, and carrots.   In particular in men, research has shown that eating foods high in lycopene may contribute to a lower risk of developing prostate cancer.  The recipe below substitutes watermelon for tomato -  the traditional ingredient in a gazpacho dish.

Enjoy this watermelon treat on this last long weekend of the summer season.  Oh, and don’t forget to please share your recipes on the Saint Peter’s University Hospital Facebook or Google + pages or via Twitter @SPHCS_news. Mention #mytastythursday when you post.

Watermelon Gazpacho 


4 cups cubed, seeded watermelon, divided

1 cucumber, peeled, coarsely chopped, divided

1 garlic clove, minced

2 tbsp chopped onion

2 tsp lime juice



1. In a small bowl, mix 1 cup of cubed watermelon and ½ of chopped

cucumber; set aside.

2. Process remaining ingredients in a food processor or blender until


3. Transfer all ingredients to a large bowl and stir.

4. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

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You Can Have Fun and Eat Healthy This Holiday Weekend

Many folks enjoy barbecuing during a holiday weekend.  This Labor Day look out for the temptations that can interrupt your healthy eating at barbecues; you caFamilyBarbecuingn have a good time without overeating or indulging in high calorie foods.

These tips will help you to eat healthy this holiday weekend:


Aim to stick to your regular schedule of three meals a day and a couple of nutritious snacks.

  • Do not skip breakfast!  Start your day with a healthy meal. Skipping a meal can lead to eating too much during your next meal.
  • Avoid grazing on food all day long. If you are picking on different food all day long, it will be hard to keep track of how much you are eating. Stick with breakfast, lunch, and dinner meals.

Stay hydrated.

  • Water, water, water! Keep a water bottle with you and drink water throughout the day.  Make your water more satisfying by adding sliced lemon or mint to it.  Thirst can often be mistaken for hunger, so make sure you are hydrated.
  • Limit adult beverages and make smart choices.  One sugary margarita can have 600 to 800 calories.  Try club soda with a splash of cranberry juice and sliced lemon.

Eat slowly and mindfully.

  • Take your time. People who eat more slowly eat fewer calories over the course of a meal. BBQs present a perfect opportunity for eating more mindfully.  Pace yourself as you mix and mingle with friends and family. Chances are the more you chat, the less you’ll eat.

 Use small plates.

  • It works.  Research clearly shows that people who choose smaller plates eat less without even noticing it. The difference can be as substantial as 50% fewer calories consumed and studies show that people report the same level of fullness and satisfaction. Try borrowing a plate from the kids’ table or the dessert tray.

Eat the healthiest foods first.

  • Fill up on the good stuff.  If you are eating slowly and off small plates, you may as well fill up on the healthiest stuff first. Salads are a great place to start but watch the dressing.  Use low-fat dressing and put it on the side.  Eat raw vegetables without dips.

 Skip the chips, crackers and white bread.

  • Eat from the raw vegetable platter instead of the chips and cracker bowls.  Refined grains (white flour products) digest quickly and leave you less satisfied.  Try whole grain rolls for burgers or other sandwiches or flat round deli rolls.

Choose lean meats or try vegetarian options.

  • Grill it up.  Try chicken breast, Portobello mushrooms and keep burgers small — ¼ lb instead of the larger 1/3 to ½ lb burgers.  Try turkey burgers or 93% lean burgers and grill your vegetables – eggplant, squash, peppers, mushrooms.

Keep dessert small.

  • Fruit anyone?  Grab a piece of watermelon or a cup of fruit salad instead of cake or other treats.  If you really need that sweet treat, keep it small – 2” square of cake or other sweet treat. Having a smaller portion means you will eat less calories and added sugar.

Keep active.

  • Get moving. Get up and throw a Frisbee with the kids, put on music and dance, take a walk after you eat your lunch or dinner meal. Chances are someone else at the party is trying to eat healthy and stay fit during the holiday and will want to join you.

This blog post is published courtesy of Teresa Grasso, RD, CDE, outpatient nutritionist at Saint Peter’s University Hospital. To inquire about nutritional counseling, whether insurance covers this service, or to make an appointment to meet with Teresa, call (732) 745-7930. To find a physician affiliated with Saint Peter’s, visit www.saintpetershcs.com/findaphysician or call 1-855-SP-MY-DOC (1-855-776-6932).  



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