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Publix GreenWise Market Magazine
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Publix GreenWise Market Magazine - Summer 2012

A Great Day at the Beach

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Pack the cooler and slip into your flip-flops. Here's everything you need for a summer escape—ideas for yummy, healthy lunches and snacks; a sunseekers' gear checklist; eight fave Atlantic and Gulf getaways from Dr. Beach, and our pick of an Atlanta-area lake.

Best Beach Bites 

When Connie Harbor arrives at her beach cottage in Orange Beach, Alabama, the first thing she does is head for her neighborhood Publix. "People love to snack when they are at the beach," Connie says, so she keeps healthy munchies on hand for family and guests. She also makes plenty of sandwiches to take along so no one goes hungry.

Treat your family to any of these delicious, nutritious lunches, snacks and beverages. They're as tasty as they are healthy.

6 Good-for-You Drinks
  • Coconut water
  • Fruit and veggie blend (such as V8 V-Fusion juice blend)
  • Unsweetened, flavored sparkling seltzer water
  • Home-brewed unsweetened herbal sun tea
  • Publix GreenWise Market Organic Cranberry Juice
  • Unsweetened, flavored water

7 Super Beachside Meals
  1. Meatless black bean taco salad shaken in container, topped with salsa and served with jicama slices and fresh mango cubes, plus lime juice and chili powder for garnish.
  2. Low-fat chicken salad wrapped in butter lettuce leaves with sweet potato chips and Publix Fresh Cut Fruit Salad.
  3. Reduced-sodium ham wraps with grainy mustard, baby spinach, shredded mozzarella and toasted pine nuts; cherry or grape tomatoes; balsamic vinegar (for dipping); and fresh peach and pluot wedges.
  4. Publix Deli Sandwich Tray with sides of zucchini sticks, baked lentil chips and tzatziki sauce for dipping.
  5. Whole grain pita pockets filled with hummus, reduced-sodium deli turkey, chopped red pepper and romaine; cucumber spears and carrot sticks with hummus for dipping, and blueberries lightly sprinkled with cinnamon and sugar.
  6. Chilled whole grain pasta tossed with light olive oil vinaigrette, blanched asparagus and shredded Parmesan, along with melon or grape kabobs and low-fat vanilla yogurt (for fruit dip).
  7. Sushi Rolls from Publix and reduced sodium soy sauce for dipping, shelled edamame tossed with black pepper and sea salt, and Mandarin oranges.
2 No-Refrigeration-Needed Meals
  1. Crunchy peanut butter and dried cherries on mini whole grain bagel, baked apple chips or dried apples, granola nut clusters and Publix GreenWise Market Blue Corn Tortilla Chips.
  2. Tuna in single-serve pouch, squeezable sweet pickle relish pack to mix with tuna, dried vegetable chips and bananas.
15 Fun-in-the-Sun Snacks
  • Light Brie cheese wedges with strawberries
  • Low-fat squeeze-tube yogurt or yogurt drink
  • Mini light cheese rounds (such as Babybel) with mini whole wheat crackers
  • Peanut butter with whole grain pretzels or celery for dipping
  • Seeded jalapeño peppers stuffed with reduced-fat cream cheese and raspberry jam
  • Publix GreenWise Market Blue Corn Tortilla Chips
  • 100-calorie nut packs
  • Baked tortilla chips and single-serve salsa packs
  • Roasted salted pumpkin seeds and raisin mix
  • Dried banana chips
  • Ham and pineapple skewers
  • Applesauce (such as GoGo squeeZ)
  • Whole grain crackers and string cheese sticks
  • Publix GreenWise Market Organic Cranberry Nut Mix
  • Angel food cake chunks and fresh raspberries
Beach Gear

Although heading to the beach is a carefree way to spend the day, it requires a surprising amount of supplies. Carolyn Smith, who lives just across the dunes from the ocean on Tybee Island, Georgia, says, "I put everything in my rolling cart so I don't have to go back to the house for anything. I pick up most of this stuff when I am at Publix doing my grocery shopping." And so can you.

Use this list for items you want to take. Forget something? Look for it at the neighborhood Publix where you happen to be. They may carry what you need. Find the nearest Publix at
  • Beach toys
  • Beach umbrella
  • Blanket or beach chairs
  • Bottled water
  • Camera
  • Change of clothes
  • Cooler with ice/ice packs
  • First-aid supplies
  • Flip-flops or beach shoes
  • Healthy snacks
  • Insect repellent
  • Sunglasses
  • Sunscreen
  • Towels
  • Trash bags
  • Hand wipes
  • Wide-brim hat
  • Zip-top plastic bags
Keeping Foods Safe

What would a day at the beach be without food? But if you aren't careful with your picnic provisions, you may spend the next few days wishing you'd stayed home. While you're taking a dip in the surf or relaxing on the sand, dangerous bacteria could have their own holiday in your picnic basket. Keep your delicacies safe and delicious with these food safety guidelines from the USDA:
  • Keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold. Make sure perishable foods stay in their "safe zones"—below 40 degrees F for cold foods, and above 140 degrees F for hot foods. (See "Watch the thermometer," below, for more details.) For a beach outing, this is best accomplished with a well-insulated cooler. Besides the familiar white insulated coolers and steel chests, check out the new backpack-style coolers. They make it easy to get your provisions from car or cottage down to the sand. Keeping food out of the heat and out of the sun has an added advantage: It keeps sand out too.
  • Load the cooler with lots of ice. A block of ice will stay frozen longer than ice cubes or bags. You can buy gel packs or make your own long-lasting ice blocks by freezing water in plastic jugs. Just leave room for the water to expand as it freezes.
  • Watch the thermometer. The standard rule—refrigerate leftovers within two hours—applies if the air temperature is below 90 degrees F. Above that, the safe time is one hour. Put leftovers back in the cooler and keep items such as fried chicken and sandwiches in the cooler if you don't eat them promptly. Fresh fruits and vegetables, nuts, trail mix and crackers needn't take up cooler space, but keep them out of the sun. If you have any doubt about where to store something, be safe and stash it in the cooler. For more information on food safety, check out 
Nine Top Beaches in the South

In our quest to find great family-friendly beaches, we turned to the nation's foremost expert, Stephen Leatherman, Ph.D., director of the Laboratory for Coastal Research at Florida International University. You may know him as "Dr. Beach" ( Here are his picks for Publix GreenWise Market readers.

1. Huntington Beach State Park, Murrells Inlet, South Carolina

ACTIVITIES: Fishing, boating, swimming, picnicking, Atalaya Castle tours

DR.BEACH'S TAKE: Located at the southern end of the Grand Strand, Huntington offers a quieter, less crowded take on the Golf Coast than nearby Myrtle Beach.


2. Kiawah Beachwalker Park, Kiawah Island, South Carolina

ACTIVITIES: Biking, bird-watching, kite flying, strolling the boardwalk, picnicking

DR. BEACH'S TAKE: Kiawah Island is a nature coast par excellence. It's a great place to ride your bicycle on the beach along the 10-mile stretch of sand. Captain Sam's Inlet is a bird-watching paradise.

3. Cumberland Island National Seashore, St. Marys, Georgia

ACTIVITIES: Swimming, fishing, bird-watching, beachcombing for sharks' teeth and shells

DR. BEACH'S TAKE: This is my favorite beach in Georgia. Protected wildlife and plenty of excursions for history buffs make this a go-to vacation spot.


4. Crescent Beach, 10 miles south of St. Augustine, Florida

ACTIVITIES: Bodysurfing, football, playing in the sand

DR. BEACH'S TAKE: Located on the northeast coast of Florida, this is a gem of a little small-town Atlantic beach. A well-kept secret, it's less crowded than some others. Kids and grown-ups can swim with dolphins at nearby Marineland.


5. Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park, Key Biscayne, Florida

ACTIVITIES: Ocean kayaking, fishing, hydro-biking

DR. BEACH'S TAKE: Set on the south tip of Key Biscayne, Cape Florida State Park is home to my favorite beach. It's a great swimming beach with beautiful green, clear water and no waves. Near Miami, but it seems a world away.

6. Sanibel Island, Fort Myers, Florida

ACTIVITIES: Shelling, beachcombing, swimming, windsurfing, fishing, picnicking

DR. BEACH'S TAKE: This is the number-one shelling beach in the country. I consider it one of the best walking beaches too because the sand is fine and hard-packed, and the beach is flat. It also offers golf courses and bike trails.


7. Siesta Key Beach, Sarasota, Florida

ACTIVITIES: Sand volleyball tournaments, parasailing, beachcombing

DR. BEACH'S TAKE: Siesta Beach tops my 2011 list of the best beaches in the country. It claims to have the finest, whitest sand in the world, and I can't disagree. Waves that usually measure in inches and clean, clear water make it perfect for children. It's also a nonsmoking beach, earning it extra points for cleanliness and environmental stewardship.


8. Perdido Key Beach and Gulf State Park Beach Pavilion Area, both near Orange Beach, Alabama

ACTIVITIES: Watersports, dolphin cruises, parasailing, fishing, geocaching, strolling the pier, picnicking, trail hiking

DR. BEACH'S TAKE: Perdido Key Beach is one of many superb beaches in the area. With sand as fine and white as sugar, it's great for families. Nearby Gulf State Park features an open-air pavilion (with air-conditioned restrooms) and plenty of family-friendly activities.


9. Lake Allatoona, Cartersville, Georgia

If you prefer fresh water to the salty sea or the Gulf, consider the lovely lakeside beach at Red Top Mountain State Park, 42 miles northwest of Atlanta. It's a beautiful and scenic area, says park ranger Jason Harrison. A full slate of special events offers fun for all ages.

ACTIVITIES: Mini golf, birding, hiking, fishing, picnicking, boating, waterskiing

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