4 Tips to Lose Weight for the Summer, and Keep It Off
Expert tips by Taylor Malham, Nutritionist and Product Education Specialist for Isagenix International
Summer is here, but it’s not too late for you to get in shape for the season — and stay in shape after it ends. Research shows that summer can be an ideal time for weight loss because warmer weather encourages healthier eating (fresh fruits and veggies) and better hydration. So, if you’re ready to kick off your summer slim-down, here are four of my favorite summer weight loss tips:
- Don’t Skimp on Sleep: Sure, the days are a bit longer, but don’t let that hinder your sleep. Try to follow the National Sleep Foundation’s recommendation of seven to nine hours of quality sleep every night. Several studies have found that sleep restriction can alter the balance of hormones involved in controlling appetite, calorie intake, and metabolism. A recent study from Arizona State University found that when overweight individuals skimped on just one hour of sleep for five nights per week, they lost less body fat during a structured weight loss program. In other words, lack of sleep can cause you to feel hungrier and lead to overeating, making it easy to derail your weight loss efforts. While nothing replaces a good night’s sleep, if the recommended seven to nine hours of sleep aren’t happening, you could try squeezing in a quick 15-minute nap when a craving hits, as it can often provide a much-needed energy boost in place of a high-calorie snack.
- Increase Your Fruit and Veggie Intake: Hot weather typically makes people more prone to craving lighter and fresher foods like fruits and vegetables, which also tend to be lighter in calories and can help support your nutrition and weight loss goals. Keep a variety of fruits and veggies in the house so you always have a healthy snack option when hunger strikes. Even better, have your fruits and veggies washed, chopped, and ready to go for convenience. Studies have shown that keeping a fruit bowl — and no other food — on the counter at home is associated with a healthier body weight in families. Give it a try. Keep healthy foods in plain sight and hide the sweets and treats in your home to see how it affects your family’s food choice behaviors.
- Drink More Water: Many of us do this naturally during the hotter months. Staying hydrated and drinking more water can help minimize excess calorie consumption. Prioritize your hydration this summer. Carry a refillable water bottle with you or set alarms on your phone reminding you hydrate.
- Eat Outdoors: Who doesn’t love an outdoor picnic or barbecue? When the weather is warm and sunny, there’s no better reason to take your meals outside. Not only is an outdoor meal with family and friends enjoyable, but warmer weather may even help slightly suppress your appetite. One study tested this theory and found that within a two-hour period, those eating in an environment with a warmer temperature (approximately 12 degrees Fahrenheit warmer) consumed almost 100 fewer calories than those in the cooler temperature.