Daily Dose of Design: How to Eat Healthier in the Summer

Monday, August 14, 2017

How to Eat Healthier in the Summer

One of the hardest times to stay healthy and keep your healthy eating habits afloat is the summer - the weather is warm; you crave ice cream and all sorts of summer desserts. The grill is constantly on and filled with delicious meals, there's incredible appetizers at get-togethers; and not to mention the sangrias and cocktails that keep flowing! ;) Now that I've made myself SO hungry, here's some simple tips to continue enjoying all of the fun foods that come with summer without losing any progress you've made thus far:

Allow yourself a cheat day

If you totally deprive yourself, it only makes sense that you'll go crazy and eat EVERYTHING. At least that's what happens to me! ;) During the summer, Saturday is usually my "cheat day" where I allow myself to go off track and not really watch everything I eat. If you don't want one specific day as a cheat day, you can have a meal that isn't 100% lean/healthy a few days of the week, while watching the other 2-3 meals you have in the same day. It really depends on your preference (and metabolism!) but the point is, you HAVE to allow yourself to enjoy and indulge once in a while.

Always remember, everything in moderation

My grandfather ALWAYS said this to us and to my mom and her siblings when they were kids too! Now every time I say it, I think of my grandfather and it's the most important step to eating better and losing some weight. When you use the Weight Watchers program, this is the approach they use and it WORKS. It goes along with my point above, to not deprive yourself of things you love. You can have ice cream, just have 1 scoop instead of 2 or 3. Enjoy your cocktail by the pool, just have a smaller portion than you normally would. If you eat slower, this is super simple to abide by!

Eat your healthier portions first

Have your fruits or vegetables first with a meal, that way you begin to fill up on the healthier additions to your diet and end up eating smaller portions of the things that maybe aren't so great for you. I'm one of those people who saves their favorite food of a meal for last, so this is never a problem for me - haha.

Start the day with a healthy meal

While I'm not much of a breakfast fan, it really does make a huge difference in your diet and body when you have breakfast! I love morning runs in the summer, so I always have a post-workout smoothie in the mornings; they're filling, filled with fruits and protein (powder) and help me build up my energy for the day.

I'm a very picky breakfast eater and can't eat anything too heavy in the mornings. Some of my favorite breakfasts are avocado toast with egg whites, a strawberry banana smoothie (I've recently been loving pineapple mango too!) or a big bowl of fruit.

Try healthier options for your favorite meals and snacks

I LOVE ice cream. I want it every day, I crave it and I LOVE it! I've gone Pinterest crazy with finding recipes that are healthier but still REALLY tasty, and I highly suggest doing the same! There's so many copycat recipes - my favorite is banana ice cream. It tastes just like real ice cream, it's just as satisfying and it's really so healthy for you. I do the same thing for snacks - instead of chips or something super salty, I'll make a healthier trail mix type of snack with nuts/fruit, or pretzels with hummus, instead of a creamy, fatty dip.

Make better choices at restaurants

We all go out to eat a LOT more in the summer - whether you're traveling and on vacation or just spend more time out and about, it doesn't make for the healthiest of eating! It's really more-so of a social gathering in my opinion, so to make better choices when eating out, try:

1. Eat half and take the other half home - get half wrapped, and you'll be eating a smaller portion. Less calories and you'll likely be as full!
2. Check out the lighter options on the menu - a LOT of restaurants today have "lighter" menu choices. You should look carefully, because they aren't always actually better for you, but they may be smaller portions.
3. If you know you'll be going out, eat lighter the rest of the day - have a lighter breakfast/lunch and try not to snack, save your calories for the restaurant.
4. Choose lighter side options - if you pick an entree that comes with sides, pick the lighter option(s). I promise you'll feel better about yourself!

Enjoy fresh fruit season

Fruits go in and out of season, and some of the best are IN season during the summer months! Take advantage of fresh fruit season and have your favorites for breakfast and as snacks that'll fill you up without feeling guilty afterwards.

Choose your seasonings and marinades wisely

It's grill season. We're all outside, enjoying food, friends and family. Grilling is always a great option, but the different seasonings/toppings/marinades can be filled with calories and fat; sometimes sugar/salt too. There's SO many picks that are meant for grilling with that are great for you though! My favorite brand for marinades is the McCormick Grill Mates - check them ALL out here and get them as a part of Prime Pantry - AKA to your door step in 1.5 seconds. ;) The Knorr Mixes are also great options - the pesto is to die for!

Use the grill ALL summer and as long as you can

Grilled everything is so much healthier than frying, and in my opinion, a lot tastier than baked food most of the time. You can grill everything from lunch and dinner, to sides (ever try grilled corn?! YUM!) to dessert - bananas and pineapple are my favorites!


Enjoy your summer and still maintain (and lose!) some weight/stay fit. It's easier than you'd think, promise! ;)


  1. Great tips for eating out. That always seems like the hardest part!

  2. These are SUCH great tips!!

    xx Rebecca

  3. moderation is the biggest thing for me! I have an addictive personality and learning how to be middle of the road in all areas of my life has changed my self esteem and productivity in ways i could never imagine!

  4. Great suggestions, because the struggle has been real for me this summer! I believe in everything in moderation though, so that definitely helps! You are so right about fresh fruit season, it is an easy way to get your fill without feeling guilty afterwards!

  5. I love the tip about eating your veggies first at dinner, I never even thought about that before but it is so helpful!! :)

    Kristen | www.sophisticatedgal.com

  6. I love the fruit and veggies that are available in the summer! A lot of my coworkers have gardens and bring in their extra vegetables, which is always delicious.

  7. I allow myself to have sweets like ice cream when I really want them but try to make myself wait 15 minutes after the craving hits to make sure it isn't just a habit (so easy to reach for a bowl of ice cream every single night in the warmer months). I also try and make 1-2 meals really veggie focused, it makes a big difference in how I feel (:

  8. Awesome tips! I am really trying to apply the 80/20 rule in my life lately!

  9. These are wonderful tips! I'm so guilty of wanting all the sweets during the summer time.

  10. Moderation is key. I eat healthy during the week so I can be a little more loose about it on the weekends. And even if I'm splurging I try to keep my portions small

  11. I definitely agree with the everything in moderation! I never like to deprive myself but it's important to set a healthy limit! Great tips!

  12. These are excellent tips that I normally love to follow in the summer. It's amazing how much energy you have after eating zoodles compared to real noodles. I have a flourishing garden that has pressured me to cook more veggies this summer.

  13. I am totally in the eat your veggies first club! Even if we are getting pizza, I always start with a small side salad. Otherwise I could probably eat the whole darn pie. There are a lot of great tips in here, thank you!

  14. That picture of the acai bowl just made me want it so badly!! We have a place that recently opened by us and their bowls are delicious. Also, great tip with the grill! My husband and I think the same way. The more we grill the healthier our meals always are.

  15. 'Everything in moderation' is my motto for pretty much everything!

  16. After a great summer of indulging - these tips are a welcome reminder - thanks!

  17. I eat so bad during the summer and am starting to cut back! I eat so much ice cream during the summer.

    Greta | www.gretahollar.com

  18. I like to enjoy everything but in moderation. I actually find the summer time the easiest time to eat healthy. I love ice cold smoothies & fresh fruit in the summer. My hardest time is in the winter, I just want all the sweets & desserts.

  19. Yes to using the grill all summer long! That's been my go to!

  20. Fresh fruit is the BEST in summer...grilling it or freezing it is always fun, too, to mix it up and literally make it taste like dessert!

    Coming Up Roses

  21. Great tips for eating healthy all year long. Yes to the grill even in the winter. Or is that just me :)

  22. oh my goodness that bowl looks so good! These are all super awesome tips. I like to balance my meals and I always eat my healthier portions first and I make sure my healthier portions are a lot bigger than the tasty unhealthy stuff.

  23. But like...whatever that thing up top with chocolate and strawberries is, I WANT IT. Healthy or not. Ha!

    Coming Up Roses

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