As nutritionists, we dread the summer months. Everyone seems to be taking vacations, dining out, and generally not caring about their health and nutrition goals. Those who wanted to look their best for summer have already done the work or have decided to just wait until summer is over and the school year starts again.
That means the office is slow and those who do check in have often maintained or gained due to trips and holidays.
But focusing on your health is a lifelong battle and one you can pay attention to during the summer as well!
Even if you’re travelling and even if there’s a holiday, you can make better choices that will keep you moving forward instead of stepping back. At the very least, you’ll do more maintaining than gaining!
Bonus, you’ll have more energy and less bloat as well!
As a nutritionist, it would be easy to tell you to stick to salads on vacation and when eating out, but that isn’t real life. Instead, I’d argue for you to make healthy-ish choices- choices that aren’t perfectly healthy but are less unhealthy than others. Here’s an example:
All of these options make your meal much less likely to make you gain weight because they cut significant carbohydrates and calories from the plate.
This kind of process should be one you always do when eating out. Get used to saying no to one of the things you want, and instead save it for next time you eat there.
Here’s a few more examples:
These kinds of choices seem harsh at first but are easier than totally saying no and will compound to give you more success in the future.
If you do have a day of intense drinking or eating, remember the concept of balance. Give your body a mini detox the next day.
People all have different ways they like to detox but many different strategies are effective ways to balance the overindulgence of previous days.
For example, many people like to follow a juice fast for a day or two post-holiday. This helps balance out extra calories and fill your body with anti-inflammatory anti-oxidant nutrients.
Juices should always be 80% vegetable and only 20% fruit to maintain proper blood sugar balance. A fresh juice made with spinach, cucumber, parsley, kale, a couple of lemons, and one apple will last you a whole day.
If you’re not into juice fasts, a simple day of fresh veggies only is another great way to recover. Try to stick to salads with olive oil and apple cider vinegar dressings and drink lots of water.
A good cleanse shake that I do with a lot of clients in addition to these other measure is called Biocleanse. People love it for the way it makes their skin glow and it has components in it that help clean out the liver, our natural detox organ. (Find Biocleanse here)
In my experience, its more often the alcohol that causes weight gain during summer than food indulgences, especially for those who try to stick to a plan.
What may seem innocent enough, a few glasses of wine a couple times a week, can easily cause belly bloat and weight gain.
The worst offenders are mixed drinks and beer, it’s very easy to overdo them! Ideally for weight loss you would eliminate or drastically limit alcohol to one drink, one night per week and no more.
But it’s summer time!
To make healthy-ish choices with alcohol try the following:
Most importantly, remember that just because you’ve made a couple steps backward, doesn’t mean you’ve negated all the progress you’ve made! Don’t use a few slip ups as a reason to fall off the wagon completely.
Enjoy your summer!