Diane May Nutrition Blog

Summer Food Safety

May 26th, 2015

The season is finally upon us to pull out the grill and have BBQ’s, picnics and outside gatherings.  Almost 1 in 6 Americans will have food poisoning this year, the majority of the cases occurring in the summer. No one is immune but babies, infants, older adults and those with compromised immune systems are at greater risk.  There are some basic tips to keep you and your family safe while you enjoy eating outside this summer.

  • Keep everything clean! Wash utensils, surfaces and hands.  Even if you are going to peel fruits and vegetables, run them under water before consuming them.  Bring hand wipes and hand sanitizers when on the go.
  • Make sure to keep everything separate. Have different plates for raw and cooked foods.  Cross contamination of raw and cooked foods is one of the most common ways to make yourself sick.
  • Chill raw and prepared foods promptly below 40 degree F. No prepared foods should be left out more than two hours (or one hour if it is above 90 degrees).  Bring insulated containers or ice packs to make sure food stays at a safe temperature and keep them out of the sun.
  • Bring/ use a thermometer.  Always cook food to the correct internal temperature.  Some temperatures to know: Hamburger-160 degrees F, Chicken and turkey-165 degrees F, Steak-145 degree F, Egg dishes-160 degree F, Leftovers-165 degree F, Fin fish-145 degree F or flesh is opaque, (shellfish, flesh should be opaque).
  • Marinate your proteins in the fridge. Don’t use your raw marinade on cooked foods.

Summertime is a great time to eat healthy food and enjoy that sunshine.  Please just remember to stay safe and use the above safety tips!

Grilled Rosemary-Salmon Skewers

From EatingWell:  August/September 2006,

Summer Food Safety

Makes: 4 servings, 2 skewers each

Active Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes




  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh rosemary
  • 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1 pound center-cut salmon fillet, skinned (see Tip) and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes



  1. Preheat grill to medium-high.
  2. Combine rosemary, oil, garlic, lemon zest, lemon juice, salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Add salmon; toss to coat. Alternating the salmon and tomatoes, divide among eight 12-inch skewers.
  3. Oil the grill rack (see Tip). Grill the skewers, carefully turning once, until the salmon is cooked through, 4 to 6 minutes total. Serve immediately.


  • Make Ahead Tip: Prepare the skewers (Step 2), cover and refrigerate for up to 8 hours. Proceed with grilling (Steps 1 & 3) when ready to serve. | Equipment: Eight 12-inch skewers
  • Tips: How to skin a salmon fillet: Place skin-side down. Starting at the tail end, slip a long knife between the fish flesh and the skin, holding down firmly with your other hand. Gently push the blade along at a 30° angle, separating the fillet from the skin without cutting through either.
  • To oil the grill rack, oil a folded paper towel, hold it with tongs and rub it over the rack. (Don’t use cooking spray on a hot grill.)


Per serving: 172 calories; 7 g fat (1 g sat, 3 g mono); 53 mg cholesterol; 4 g carbohydrates; 0 g added sugars; 23 g protein; 1 g fiber; 200 mg sodium; 607 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Selenium (60% daily value), Vitamin C (25% dv), Potassium (17% dv), Vitamin A (15% dv), excellent source of omega-3s.