Fresh strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries are some of summer’s most delectable treats. On the South Beach Diet, you can enjoy these fiber-rich berries on Phase 2 and beyond. Berries are a delicious source of disease-fighting antioxidants. Here are a few tips on how to enjoy fresh berries this summer.
At the grocery store or farmers’ market, choose dry, plump, and brightly colored berries with no obvious rotten spots. Avoid containers with juice stains — this is a sign that the berries either have been battered or are overripe. Also be on the lookout for moldy spots — mold travels like wildfire through berries, so avoid containers with signs of this blue-gray blight. After you've brought home your berries, store them unwashed in the refrigerator in a covered container. Fresh berries don't last long and are best used within a few days of purchase. Berries can also be stored in the freezer for up to four months; just spread the berries out on a cookie tray and freeze before consolidating into a smaller container.
Here are 5 fun ways to enjoy berries this summer:
- Prepare a yogurt parfait, mixing in nonfat or low-fat plain yogurt or artificially sweetened yogurt with berries of your choice.
- Add grilled berries to a salad of grilled veggies and chicken. Serve over romaine lettuce, mesclun, or spinach.
- Create a strawberry-avocado salsa and serve it as a topping for grilled chicken, fish, or shrimp. Or, puree strawberries with a South Beach Diet–friendly barbecue sauce and brush the sauce on your favorite lean meat.
- Dip strawberries in semisweet or bittersweet dark chocolate for a decadent dessert.
- Whip up a refreshing summer smoothie with fat-free or low-fat milk, low-fat or nonfat yogurt, and frozen mixed berries. Or, concoct a cool summer “sparkler” using your favorite berry, lime juice, seltzer, and a sugar substitute.