Summer is a few months away, and that means it will soon be time to break out the summer wardrobe: shorts, skirts, short sleeves, sleeveless dresses, and of course, swimsuits. 

As an online weight loss coach, I work with many women who once loathed summer because it meant they had to wear clothes that revealed their bodies. But after 4-8 weeks, they were eagerly buying summer clothes that showed off their slimmer physiques. 

Here are 10 tips I shared with those clients – and am now sharing with you – that will help you lose weight and get that slimmer, tighter body that you’ll love showing off when summer hits.

1. START EACH DAY WITH INFUSED DEBLOATING WATER

This tip will help you lose weight by the summer AND get you in a summery mood.

I recommend to all my clients that they start the day off by drinking infused debloating water because it does multiple things to help you lose weight: it boosts your metabolism, helps you avoid drinking sugar, and detoxifies and debloats you.

This recipe for infused debloating water contains lemon, cucumber, and mint, which will help you feel physically lighter and refreshed (rather than if you drank sugary energy drinks or coffee, which can lead to all sorts of nasty feelings like irritability, fatigue and stomach pain). The light taste of this water will also get you in the mood for summer, and help you imagine relaxing on the beach as a nice breeze blows through your hair.

The Debloating Water Recipe

Combine these ingredients in a large pitcher and let them infuse overnight. Drink one glass a day (or more), preferably first thing in the morning. 

  • 6 cups of water
  • 1- 2 lemons, sliced in rounds with the peel on
  • 1 medium cucumber, sliced in rounds with the peel on
  • 6-8 sprigs of fresh mint for muddling
  • Optional: sprinkle of cayenne or paprika

Here’s the science on how drinking infused debloating water in the mornings can change your body from the inside AND inspire a more positive mindset.

Water

Drinking water increases your metabolism, and drinking lots of water is one of the best ways to help digestion and eliminate toxins through the colon.

Lemon

Lemons contain micronutrients with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Experts link long-term chronic inflammation to a variety of diseases, but the Vitamin C in lemons can help boost your immune system.

Cucumber

Did you know that you can make your water even more hydrating? A cucumber consists of around 96% water, one of the best hydrating vegetables to eat.

Cucumbers also contain important electrolytes that help reduce sodium and maintain fluid balance in the body. Full of potassium, magnesium, vitamin K, calcium, and fiber, cucumbers are associated with everything from reversing diabetes to preventing cancer cells from reproducing.

Mint

With mint, the magic is all in the scent. Mint is a natural appetite suppressant that can be used to keep sugar cravings at bay and prevent overeating at lunch and dinner.

Cayenne

If you like a little kick, try adding a sprinkle of cayenne (or paprika for the less adventurous) to really rev up your metabolism and curb your appetite.

2. ADD CINNAMON TO YOUR COFFEE

By adding cinnamon to your coffee, you get that sweet taste without relying on sugar, and it’s one thing you can do to help you lose weight by summer.

Too much sugar is linked to a variety of health problems, but when it comes to weight gain, sugar is often the culprit. According to Johns Hopkins cardiologist Chiadi E. Ndumele, M.D., M.H.S, “there is enough evidence to say that elevated sugar consumption is an important contributor to weight gain.” 

Drinking sugar in the morning can also lead to a spike in your blood sugar levels, which can inhibit the oxidative hierarchy, making it difficult to lose weight (read more about the role of insulin, blood sugar, and the oxidative hierarchy in my article “Why is it So Hard to Lose Weight Over 40?”). 

3. DRINK GREEN SMOOTHIES

Green smoothies are a great way to increase your nutrient intake and help with weight loss. Green smoothies are usually made with spinach, kale, or another nutrient-packed leafy green like swiss chard. These leafy greens contain vitamins A, C, E and K, calcium, fiber, and are a great source of plant-based protein. These nutrient-rich leafy greens make you feel fuller for longer and due to their abundant amounts of Bile acid sequestrants compounds, green smoothies help lower cholesterol.

By substituting that bagel in the morning or that fast food at lunchtime with a green smoothie, you will be on your way to weight loss in time for summer.

If you’re skipping meals, I recommend adding a green smoothie because it will boost metabolism instead of keeping it stagnant, which happens when people don’t eat enough (common in women in midlife).

4. ADD TURMERIC TO FOODS

Another thing you can do to help with your summer weight loss is to start adding turmeric to your diet.

Turmeric helps with weight loss by reducing inflammation. When your body is inflamed, it’s easier to gain weight and harder to lose weight. Your whole system is stressed out and this leads to an increase in fat storage. Inflammation also makes you retain water, which makes you look and feel puffy. However, Turmeric contains curcumin, which has strong anti-inflammatory compounds and reduces obesity-related inflammation. 

Add 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric to foods such as meat, eggs, and smoothies. Its pungent, earthy-sweet taste will liven up whatever dish you’re eating. Combine turmeric with a sprinkle of black pepper, which increases absorption by your body by over 2000%.

5. WRITE THIS MANTRA: “IT’S NOT ALL OR NOTHING. IT’S THE HEALTHIER CHOICE.”

This little trick for weight loss has to do with mindset. Mindset is a big component of weight loss, and if you want to lose weight by summer, you have to get in the right mindset.

Write down this mantra: “It’s not all or nothing. It’s the healthier choice.” You have to remember that when you get off track from your healthy diet, it doesn’t mean you failed. It means that in that moment, you needed something sugary or something salty, and the next food choice you make will be a healthier one. 

If we let ourselves think we have failed, it kills any momentum we had on our weight loss journey. So reframe those “failures” into what they really are: learnings. Learn from them, and then make healthier choices for your next snack or meal.

6. EAT POTATOES LAST

This is another little trick that will help you get slimmer by summer: eat your potatoes last.

Many people like a side of potatoes with their meals, whether it be french fries, baked potatoes, fried potatoes, potato chips, or potato salad. According to The Packer’s 2022 Fresh Trends survey, potatoes are the most popular vegetable.

When you’re eating a meal with potatoes as a side, first eat the protein and vegetable parts of your meal BEFORE you eat the potatoes. Because, even though potatoes are considered “healthy” carbs, your body digests these carbs faster than other kinds of complex carbs. These broken-down carbs will cause your blood sugar to spike because they deluge your blood with sugar. If you eat your protein and vegetables before your potatoes, you will decrease spikes in your blood sugar, which will prevent too much fat from being stored in your body. 

7. EAT ONLY THE INSIDES OF A SANDWICH

Another thing you can do to help you lose weight by summer!

When you eat a sandwich, eat the insides of two sandwiches, or eat one open-faced (one piece of bread) sandwich. This way, you are eating more metabolism-boosting foods and less fat-storing foods. You’ll also feel full for longer. 

For an additional boost to weight loss, make your sandwich options healthy as well as flavorful. Include nutrient-rich and protein-rich ingredients like leafy greens, vegetables, and eggs.

8. MIX FRUITS WITH HEALTHY FATS AND PROTEIN

This trick will make for a nice treat and help you shed some pounds before summer hits.

When you’re having an apple, pear, or other fruit, pair it with 1-2 tablespoons of nut butter, nuts, Greek yogurt, or cottage cheese, or any other healthy fat or protein. This will slow the absorption of the natural sugars in the fruit, and you will store less fat.

For ideas on how to pair fruits with healthy fats and protein, check out my post on 15 Foods to Put in Your Greek Yogurt to Lose Weight. 

9. MEASURE YOUR BODY TO TRACK WEIGHT LOSS.

We all need motivation to maintain weight loss, and sometimes the scale doesn’t reflect how much weight our body is actually losing.

Many times, our weight loss happens in conjunction with gaining muscle, and if we gain muscle, we’re not going to see extreme changes on the scale. However, we see those changes when we measure our bust, waist, and hips weekly. It’s one of the best ways to monitor and track your progress. 

And if you want to lose weight by summer to show off slimmer arms and legs, then measuring those will keep you further motivated on your summer weight loss journey.

10. AVOID PLANNING ACTIVITIES AROUND FOOD

For my final tip for summer weight loss, I challenge you to reframe your thoughts about food.

Food is supposed to be what fuels us. It nourishes our bodies so that we can live our lives, play with our children, and pursue things that interest us. 

Food is not supposed to be the center of our lives. It should not be something that dictates where we go and what we do. It may not have occurred to you how often you plan an activity, and the main part of that activity is centered around eating. 

To ensure food does not become the focus of your day, avoid planning activities only around food. Instead of going out to brunch being the activity of the day, make it a morning hike. Instead of planning your child’s birthday party at Chuck E. Cheese, plan the party at the local park. Instead of imagining where you and your family will go out to eat this Saturday night, imagine yourselves going for an afternoon bike ride. That night, you can have a delicious meal like one of these healthy crockpot recipes, which will make you feel good. 

I’m not saying you should substitute activities for eating. Eating should still be a part of your day; it just doesn’t need to be the main part of your day. 

Nagina Abdullah, BA, MBA

Nagina Abdullah is a health coach for middle-aged women and professionals. She coaches women to boost their metabolism naturally, shed pounds and keep them off. Her work with weight loss clients led to the creation of Masala Body, an online weight loss platform that provides an easy and accessible system that helps women sustainably lose weight. She has helped over 1200 women successfully lose from 10-80 lbs and create a sustainable lifestyle change. Nagina earned her degree in Molecular and Cell Biology from UC Berkeley.