11 Secrets to a Slimmer Summer
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11 Secrets to a Slimmer Summer

These editor-approved weight loss tips will help you lean out this season.

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By Zoe Ferqueron

Cook outs, frozen treats, refreshing cocktails—it’s easy to gain weight over the summer. Fortunately, with tricks from Sharecare’s summer slimdown plan, shedding the weight can be just as simple.

To help kick start your weight loss journey, our editors collected waist-withering tips we're sure you can't wait to try. Read on to learn how you can have your slimmest summer yet.

#11 Shake up your workout routine this way

2 / 12 #11 Shake up your workout routine this way

It seems like a new “must try” workout fad appears every day, and it can be hard to keep up. Now, you can skip the scroll through Instagram. To help vary your routine, we’ve gathered the 6 best exercise moves to steal from trendy workouts.

Top Tip: Bring your barre class skills home, and try the bridge pose to work out your core, hips and chest. To get started, lie on your back with your knees bent. Push your hips up towards the ceiling and hold the pose for 30 seconds. This move will open your hip flexors and improve your spine’s flexibility, all while engaging your core.

#10 Slash calories, but keep food favorites

3 / 12 #10 Slash calories, but keep food favorites

It's possible to cut your daily calorie consumption and lose weight without giving up your favorite foods. These 10 tips can help you make better food choices and pick the perfect portion, both of which can slash calories. The best part? You'll never feel like you're missing out.

Top Tip: Serve yourself one tablespoon of peanut butter serving instead of two, and slash 95 calories. When picking a fruit to pair with your nut butter, remember not every option is low-cal. Grabbing a small orange instead of a banana can save you 75 calories.

#9 Blend a better smoothie to boost weight loss

4 / 12 #9 Blend a better smoothie to boost weight loss

Some smoothie recipes can promote good gut bacteria, which can help beat belly bloat and promote regular digestion. Another bonus: Smoothies can help you shed pounds, if you don't overload your blender. It's amazing how easy a cup full of calories can be sipped through a straw, so don't pulse up more fruit than you could actually eat.

Top Tip: Try different smoothie add-ins like chia seeds. One tablespoon of chia seeds contains 20 percent of your daily fiber, which can keep you fuller, longer. Fiber also helps your digestive system run smoothly, which may help you lose weight.

#8 Keep your workout interesting

5 / 12 #8 Keep your workout interesting

Donovan Green, personal trainer to Dr. Oz, shares exercise secrets to help optimize your gym time, while scorching maximum calories. They're simpler than you might think.

Top Tip: Keep your heart rate up and your body guessing with interval training:

  • Walk for two minutes
  • Jog for 30 seconds
  • Repeat four times

As your stamina improves, amp up your workout by increasing each interval to 60 seconds and minute-long sets of sprints and sit-ups to the sequence. There's more: Interval workouts can help increase the number of calories you burn, even after you've left the gym.

To track the steps you accumulate during your workout—and throughout the day—download an app, like Sharecare, for iOS and Android. Once you activate the tracker, your steps are calculated automatically, so grab your phone whenever you move.

#7 Blend it up for a flat belly

6 / 12 #7 Blend it up for a flat belly

Buildup of bad bacteria in the gut may cause gastrointestinal issues like uncomfortable bloating and irritable bowel syndrome. Smoothies to the rescue! These low-calorie smoothie recipes can aid digestion, minimize bloating and encourage a flat belly.

Top Tip: The berry blast smoothie is full of fresh strawberries and avocado, and contains 289 calories and 17 grams of protein. This tasty snack or meal option also 14 grams of fiber, known to ease digestion and promote regularity.

#6 Treat yourself, wisely

7 / 12 #6 Treat yourself, wisely

There are a few reasons you might not be losing weight, even though you’re kicking butt in the gym. If you're treating yourself after a hard session on the treadmill, you could be sabotaging your calorie burn.

Top Tip: It’s great to work out, but if you’re overestimating your calorie burn and then rewarding yourself with a sweet treat, you probably won’t lose weight. If you must treat yourself after a workout, make it a low-cal choice like a bowl of fruit with Reddi Wip or a square of dark chocolate.

#5 Skip the salt and pick a spice

8 / 12 #5 Skip the salt and pick a spice

It can be discouraging to see your weight fluctuate each time you step on the scale. Despite your healthiest efforts, there are a number of reasons your body weight varies. More often than not, slight weight changes are normal, but there are things you can do to help steady the scale.

Top Tip: Water retention may be weighing you down, and causing your weight to spike. A sodium-rich diet may be to blame. Instantly cut your salt by eating more fresh fruits and vegetables, and skipping processed junk. Seasonings like pepper, thyme, oregano, paprika and other herbs and spices can also replace salt, without compromising flavor.

#4 Develop the right mindset

9 / 12 #4 Develop the right mindset

Weight Watchers, a popular weight loss program, has helped millions of people shed pounds. In addition to helping dieters make healthy food choices, the program provides eaters with emotional support to achieve a positive mindset along their weight loss journey. One aspect that makes WW so effective is the focus on the individual through community.

Top Tip: Keep up with your goals by seeking the support of family, friends and fellow dieters. A self-fulfilling attitude is essential for successful weight loss. If you believe you can achieve, you will. This positive, “can-do” attitude might also help your confidence blossom, propelling a happier and healthier life.

#3 Go organic

10 / 12 #3 Go organic

Some fruits and vegetables contain more pesticides than you might believe. Pesticides are used to kill insects, rodents, weeds or fungus, consequently exposing consumers to the chemicals. Despite your best washing efforts, many of these chemicals won't complete rinse away.

Top Tip: Go organic to avoid ingesting pesticides. To get that organic label, produce is required to be grown without genetically modified organisms (GMOs) or pesticides. There might be another way to avoid eating these chemicals, without paying organic produce prices. Check out the Environmental Working Group’s Clean Fifteen list, a catalog of fruits and veggies with the least amount of pesticide residue.

#2 Swap this way

11 / 12 #2 Swap this way

Don't swear off your favorite foods in an effort to drop pounds. Instead, swap some big-ticket ingredients with healthier alternatives—your waistline and taste buds will thank you.

Top Tip: These easy swaps can help you save calories:

  • Save over 190 calories by swapping a three-ounce beef burger for a Portabello mushroom cap
  • Spread mashed avocado on your sandwich instead of mayo to save 60 calories and 8 grams of fat
  • Replace the oil in your next baking recipe with applesauce and eliminate 1,800 calories per cup
#1 The easiest way to crush cravings

12 / 12 #1 The easiest way to crush cravings

One Sharecare editor tried a plant-based diet for 30 days and she not only lost weight, but saved money, too. These are the tricks that helped her eat healthy all month long.

Top Tip: Change up the layout of your kitchen. Bring healthy snacks like fruits and nuts to the forefront of the pantry or fridge, leaving sweets and sugary foods in the back. Why this works? Keeping unhealthy eats out of sight makes you less likely to reach for them.

We tend to grab what’s closest and quickest, so put carb-heavy things, like breads, in the freezer.  You'll be less likely to carbo-load if you have to defrost the slices first.