1. Stay Hydrated
If your body is not properly hydrated it cannot function at it’s best. Water is key to a healthy metabolism and regulating digestion. In the summertime when it is hot out, proper hydration is more important than ever. By the time you start to feel thirty it is too late, you are already dehydrated. Diet soda and alcohol are both big dehydrators so, make water your drink of choice! Also, the next time you are feeling hungry drink some water before reaching for a snack. Dehydration can often be mistaken for hunger.
2. Frequent the Farmer’s Market
Focus your diet around fresh, whole foods and eliminate processed junk. If it has more than five ingredients you probably should not be eating it. Whole foods such as fruits and vegetables are easier for your body to digest and process. Take advantage of the abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables available at the farmer’s market in the summer. From watermelon, to cherries, to peaches, to zucchini, to corn, to tomatoes there is something for every taste! As Michael Pollen (author of The Omnivores Dilemma) says, “ if it comes from a plant, eat it. If it was made in a plant, don’t.”
3. Get Your Greens In
Always start your meal with dark, leafy greens. Kale, spinach, collards and swiss chard are all very hydrating, fiber-rich and nutrient dense. The fiber in greens will fill you up so you are less likely to be hungry and make a poor eating choice. The natural enzymes in the greens will help you digest the rest of your meal easily and keep you from feeling heavy and bloated.
4. Make Time to Move Your Body
Make exercise a priority. Exercise not only burns calories but also it makes you feel great and helps manage stress. Find a type of exercise you truly enjoy. The summertime is a great time to experiment with new workouts. Try swimming, running outside, outdoor yoga, tennis, or bike riding. Whatever it is find something you love and stick to it. You are much more likely to exercise regularly if you truly enjoy what you are doing. Schedule your workout into your calendar just as you would another important appointment. Make your exercise routine as important as outdoors drinks, or beach time.
5. Get Your Z’s
Sleep is essential to good health. In the summer when our social calendars tend to be more full and our days longer it is important to always get a good night’s rest. While we sleep our bodies do a lot of important housekeeping including hormone regulation and detoxification. People who are sleep deprived are more likely to make un-healthy eating choices. Make your bedroom a sacred place. Try and avoid watching TV, checking your email, or surfing the Internet in bed. Try and implement a bedtime routine that helps you unwind at the end of the day- a bath or a good book are healthy choices!