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15 Refreshing Picnic Food Ideas For The Summer

15 Refreshing Picnic Food Ideas For The Summer

A clear blue sky, a smiling sun and cool breeze; the perfect recipe to head out and enjoy the outdoors with family and friends. Put on your sunscreen, big floppy sun hats, those funky shades, and your best summer outfits and you’re good to go. But what is a picnic without the yummylicious food? Remember, our body is in constant need of a healthy, balanced diet. So pack your baskets with these 15 refreshingly hearty food and drinks for a super picnic on a vibrant summer day.

First up: drinks. Water is a must! It is unarguably the best refreshment ever! Of course there are those fizzy drinks to accompany water, but that does not mean you are only restricted to such beverages. Start your picnic with these fresh drinks!

1. Cranberry-basil spritzer

spritzer

    Surely, this would be love at first sight. Not only will this drink quench your thirst, but will refresh you from inside out! Cranberry is a powerful source of nutriment that helps to fight disease and promote good health. Meanwhile, basil is packed with Vitamin C. Add a sufficient amount of sugar, stir, and drink it up!

    2. Sophie Dahl’s iced tea

    IcedTea

      After a generous feast: lie down, relax, read a book, or carry out a conversation, laugh, and sip on this drink. What makes this special is in the unique blend of ingredients. Sophie Dahl fuses Earl Grey tea with Lavender. This is definitely worth a shot!

      3. Pineapple Cooler

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      pineapple

        It goes without saying really, but: people allergic to pineapple, please avoid! Otherwise this is another refreshment that boosts high amounts of vitamin C and manganese. The fruit contains thiamin as well as vitamin B (involved in energy production). Check this out here!

        A little munching now and then while you prepare your main meal keeps a check on those bellowing bellies. The following are light and won’t fill you up. Here are some delicious nibbles for you to chomp on.

        4. Tomato-cucumber salad with feta

        tomatosalad

          The beautiful color combination of red, green and white is simply tantalizing – the ingredients are dead simple, too! Take a bowl, fill it up with feta cheese, beefsteak tomatoes, cucumbers, and peppers. Mix a light dressing of champagne vinegar, honey and herbs. For more details click here.

          5. Green bean and tomato salad with tarragon dressing

          greenbean

            This is an ideal summer-time salad, with a neat recipe, and jam-packed with nutrients. This Mediterranean salad contains antioxidant elements, calcium, magnesium, and all kinds of vitamins.

            6. Eccentric vegan Caesar salad

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            vegancaesar

              This dish is unique in its style and despite being “unusual,” is very palatable. Just try this out and see for yourself. Easy ingredients, no fuss, no mess!

              7. Deviled eggs with cilantro, jalapenos and curry

              deviledeggs

                Who knew Devils could have delicious factors about them? At least this preparation has! The combination of fresh eggs, mayonnaise, cilantro, caramelized onions, and Indian spices of Sambar powder and curry leaves are super healthy and absolutely effortless. May the devils win this round!

                Time for the favorite part of all food lovers around the globe. Since this is a picnic we are attending, being a glutton would be such a turn off. Not only is it uncomfortable, it is unhealthy too. Let’s keep the ingredients simple, yet filling. So let’s not wait any further and check out the collection of these scrumptious feasts. Presenting to you:

                8. Emeril’s muffuletta

                FW0705WAS05

                  A classic New Orleans sandwich, this beauty is stuffed with cured meats, pickled vegetables, cheese, and tangy olives on a hearty Italian loaf. The vegetables, tangy olives and cheese are a perfect balance to the juicy meat. This is your all-in-one meal!

                  9. Pretzel-crusted “fried” chicken

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                  pretzelchick

                    This fried chicken is both fun and healthy; something both the children and adults will enjoy! The important factor is this is entirely baked and it contains pretzel. So, heat up your oven and bake this protein!

                    10. Grilled buffalo tofu Po’ boy with apple slaw

                    tofusandwich

                      A vegan delight, this sandwich is brimming with calcium, protein and iron – and is gluten free! A straightforward recipe with no ruckus, this sub comprises of marinated grilled tofu and creamy slaw.

                      11.  Mayim Bialik’s vegan Reuben sandwich

                      Vegan-Reuben

                        Just look at this handsomeness! You don’t have to be a vegan to fall in love with it! A twist in the recipe by the actress of Big Bang Theory, this sandwich is stashed with a good proportion of carbohydrates, protein, and fiber. This is a comfort food for all!

                        12. Avocado & ham sandwich

                        hamsandwich

                          The wooden smoky flavor of the ham, combined with a pleasing nutty zest of avocado and Swiss cheese, make this particular sandwich so extraordinary. The best part of this hearty meal is that avocado itself is a highly nutritious fruit – It has high level of potassium, monounsaturated fatty acid, and loads of fiber. Indulge yourself in this pack of yum; you will love it! You will find the recipe here.

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                          Finally, No matter how wholesome your meal is, it will remain incomplete without the touch of sweetness. Yes, desserts compliment the whole savory feast. Even if you take one item, it is still valuable. Here is a list of 3 sweet treats for you!

                          13. Quick and easy raspberry tart

                          raspberrytart

                            This recipe is as easy as a pie! Just get those frozen puff pastry sheets, add generous amount of fresh raspberries, put in the oven and bake it! Fresh raspberries decrease chances of obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and increase energy. Take a look at this wonder tart.

                            14. Milk-chocolate cookies with malted cream

                            cookiecream

                              Ernestine Ulmer once said, “Life is short. Eat dessert first.” I am going to rephrase it here, “Life is short. Eat this first.” Another smooth recipe that contains milk-chocolate wafers and a mixture of Ovaltine, butter and sugar, and you are good to go! These cookies contain an extra bit of fat, but that’s fair enough in one case (unless you go out on picnics every day!)

                              15. Fruit and cheeses

                              fruitcheese

                                If you want to avoid excess sugar or cream, or want just want something out-of-the-park, then fruit and cheese are for you. Just search around for some hand picked fresh fruits, wash them properly, add an assortment of cheeses, and eat them with toasted raisin-pecan bread. You can also bring fruits of your choice from home, but whatever you do, make sure the fruits are right-out-of-the-tree fresh. Nothing can be as healthy as this meal!

                                Well, bring out your baskets, call your acquaintances, gather your shopping, and head out on a glorious morning and relish your picnic. Until then, delight yourself and stay healthy!

                                Featured photo credit: Woman’s Hand Taking Food From Cafe Table With Dips And Drinks via stokpic.com

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                                Sumaiya Kabir

                                Sumaiya is a passionate writer who shares thoughts and ideas to help people improve themselves.

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                                Last Updated on July 2, 2020

                                Simple Hacks on How to Relieve Neck Pain Fast (and Naturally)

                                Simple Hacks on How to Relieve Neck Pain Fast (and Naturally)

                                There is very little in life as annoying or distracting as neck pain. Most people find that neck pain is temporary. What can you do if your neck pain seems chronic or if it comes and goes with no obvious source?

                                Whether you have simply slept on your neck wrong or you are working late, hunched over a keyboard half the night, neck pain is, well, a pain in the neck!

                                What most people are unaware of is that there are little known hacks that can help you find relief from neck pain fast and naturally. This means no pills or expensive exercise equipment to buy.

                                How can you get relief from neck pain?

                                There are several easy steps to follow to find the perfect hack for solving your neck pain fast and easy.

                                How Did I End Up With This Pain in the Neck?

                                Neck pain often has an I-was-looking-right-at-it source that we don’t recognize at first glance. Once you identify the source of the pain, you can take the best corrective measure, or several measures if need be!

                                Ask yourself these questions to find a possible source:

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                                • Do you spend much of the day sitting (desk job, typing, etc.)?
                                • How old are your mattress and pillow?
                                • How much exercise do you work into an average day?
                                • How do you manage stress?
                                • Have you been injured or in an accident (no matter how small) lately?

                                Perhaps one last question to ask yourself might be, “Is my pain a regular occurrence, or is my neck pain something that has just cropped up?

                                Once you know the answers to these questions, you can start searching for answers.

                                Remedies for Neck Pain

                                Once you know the source, try tapping into one (or several) of these solutions to start healing your neck pain now.

                                1. Everyday Activities

                                One of the important factors with neck pain will be your everyday activities. Other than an injury or accident, one of the largest factors for neck pain includes working overtime in an office and the stress that work entails[1].

                                Due to the coronavirus, many people find themselves working from home, in kitchens, basements, using a barstool, and/or other equipment that was not designed for humans to spend hours on end, typing and looking at a computer screen.

                                If you find that your neck pain has occurred during the past few months due to a job change, or if you suddenly began working from home, your issue may be due to ergonomics. Invest in an adjustable office chair to help make your workspace more neck-friendly.

                                2. Age of Mattress and Pillow

                                The age of your mattress and pillow should also be considered. Pillows, on average, should be changed every 3 years, and a mattress every 7-10 years. No matter how good or comfortable you think these items are, the truth is that they are hurting your neck and back with a lack of support.

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                                A good mattress is well worth the investment, and pillows are always on sale, as well as wallet-friendly. If you haven’t tried them, a water-filled pillow can be comfortable for many people.

                                3. Exercise/Movement/Stretching

                                It’s that old exercise question that no one wants to hear. This time around, it has been difficult for many people to get in good exercise since they have been housebound due to the quarantine. There are plenty of ways to get in some good, old-fashioned exercise.

                                Stretching exercises are even more important than before since many people do not get enough movement while sitting at home. There are hundreds of at-home exercise, dance, and yoga videos that require little to no equipment, so even if you’re a beginner, give it a go.

                                4. Stress and Stress Management

                                Stress is a hidden danger that robs more people of health than even most doctors realize. While everyone has stress, not everyone recognizes it, nor do they have a means of managing it. Exercise is one of the best ways to release stress, with meditation and yoga being the best ways to manage and relieve stress. All of these will remove tightness in the muscles and relieve neck pain.

                                5. Accident or Injury

                                If you have been involved in an accident or injured yourself lately (falling down, or having something fall on you, for example) and your neck pain began after this incident, you should speak with your doctor about this as soon as possible.

                                6. On-Going Problem or Sudden Occurrence

                                Finally, if your neck pain is something that has occurred recently, it could simply be that you slept on it wrong or turned your neck too hard. That will make this a very temporary condition. You can try some easy stretches for pain relief .

                                An on-going problem, however, might respond better to some other alternative methods, including:

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                                • Slowly moving and stretching your neck. Do not move too quickly or too far. Roll your head from side to side, shoulder to shoulder, to the front and to the back.
                                • Ice packs work well for some people, while heat works best for others.
                                • Be aware of how you use your cell phone or tablet. If you keep your neck bent downward for too long to look at it, you can develop an annoying pain called text-neck or tech-neck. Take breaks and look up to stretch those neck muscles.
                                • Long hours driving can also be hard on the neck. Look from side to side as far as you can, as well as up and down to prevent a stiff neck.

                                 

                                Still Have Tight Neck Muscles? 3 Tips for Finding Relief

                                When tight neck muscles are not responding to the typical heat, ice, or massage treatments, you might want to give the following a try:

                                1. Gua Sha

                                This is an ancient Chinese practice that might seem a bit odd, but it works for many people. In this practice, a trained individual uses a spoon or other object and makes short strokes down the neck. It is believed that poor blood circulation causes it to become stagnant, if you will, and blocks the positive energy needed for life, called qi.

                                Fresh blood will indeed allow oxygen and nutrients to feed the tissues in a given area, and one study found that gua sha worked where traditional methods, such as heat therapy, did not[2].

                                2. Swimming

                                You probably know that swimming is a terrific low-impact exercise that works wonders for those with back and knee pain, but did you know that it also works well for neck pain and tight muscles? It helps if the water is tepid and not cold, but even just floating on your back can offer tremendous relief since most of the body weight is suspended by the buoyancy of water.

                                3. Chiropractic Massage

                                Not your typical day spa massage, chiropractic massage is performed under the guidance of a chiropractor. A trained massage therapist will still do the massage, but this time, the chiropractor will have discussed your neck pain and any problems you might be having with them. Many people have found real relief from neck pain through chiropractic massage.

                                The Best Treatment for Neck Pain

                                When you need to find relief from neck pain and nothing you have tried previously seems to give you more than a few minutes of relief, spending some time with a chiropractor often times can fix this issue, and it doesn’t often return if you follow a healthy lifestyle.

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                                I’m certain that many of you are thinking about those awful videos with those loud cracking noises you’ve seen on social media, or you are recalling a news story which might have suggested that allowing a chiropractor anywhere near your neck might be a health hazard[3]. Nothing could be further from the truth.

                                You should try the other suggestions in this article before you head off to the chiropractor, but when all else fails, don’t let neck pain nag you day in and day out. Take steps to make an appointment, and you will be surprised at the results.

                                What Can a Chiropractor Do for Neck Pain?

                                Many people mistakenly believe that the only technique a chiropractor will use is a neck adjustment. Chiropractors are trained in a variety of methods that are designed to help you find the pain relief you are seeking.

                                A few of the methods a chiropractor might use include:

                                • Cervical Manual Traction
                                • Flexion-Distraction
                                • Cervical Mobilization
                                • Ultrasound
                                • Cervical Drop Technique
                                • Trigger Point Therapy

                                There are many more options, but your chiropractor should explain to you which techniques s/he intends to use and why[4]

                                The Bottom Line

                                If neck pain wreaks havoc in your life regularly, the best way to stop it is to identify the source and attack it from that angle.

                                Getting plenty of exercises, having a proper posture, and buying an office chair that provides plenty of support, as well as a regular stretching program, will keep your neck strong and flexible for many years to come.

                                More Tips on Healing Neck Pain

                                Featured photo credit: Christopher Campbell via unsplash.com

                                Reference

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