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An Italian-Inspired Guide to Navigate Summer Get-Togethers

Our Health & Wellness expert shares seven tips on how to enjoy the frequent summer get-togethers like an Italian.

A table set for a summer get-together.

A table set for a summer get-together.

With summer in full swing and the Fourth of July just around the corner, we find ourselves in the heart of barbecue season. In my recent article, I shared tips on combating summertime stress, which I’ve observed is often associated with social gatherings. Drawing inspiration from Italian culture, where festivities are cherished and commonplace, let's explore how these traditions can elevate our summer gatherings and help us fully savor the moment while feeling our best.

  1. Bring your best energy: Italians are known for creating a good vibe. Bring your best energy to contribute to a fun atmosphere and enjoy the day with other guests. 
  2. Find balance in your plate: Italians appreciate a balanced approach to eating. Focus on filling your plate with protein, vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and healthy fats, and enjoy a sampling of the offerings. This could look like a cheeseburger with grilled vegetables, salad, cole slaw, and watermelon. 
  3. Embrace slow food: Italians take pleasure in their meals. Enjoy your food at a leisurely pace, savoring each bite and engaging in conversation. Pro tip: Chew with your mouth closed and swallow before speaking :)
  4. Moderate alcohol consumption: Italians typically enjoy spritzes or wine in moderation with summer meals. Remember you don’t need to drink to have fun–enjoy a drink or a few without overindulging.
  5. Stay active: Italians often incorporate movement into gatherings. Join in activities like games or leisurely walks after the meal. 
  6. Strengthen friendships: In Italian culture, mealtime is as much about the people as it is about the food. Play games, laugh, and enjoy the company of your fellow guests and maybe you’ll even make new friends.
  7. Express gratitude: Take a moment and reflect on your gratitude. Express appreciation for the food, company, and hospitality. 

By embracing these Italian-inspired tips at summer barbecues, you can fully enjoy yourself, connect with others, and feel aligned with your wellness goals and intentions.

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