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Your Slim Down Summer Eating Guide

Don't let the summer slump ruin your weight loss progress! These meals will boost your metabolism and keep you full so you're not feeling snacky all day ;)




Here are two scenarios in which my clients engage for the summer - they either use the summer to organize their health, set up meal plans and be active outdoors. Or, they plan on that, but wind up putting all their health goals on hold while at the beach and many social functions.


I've got you...you can enjoy summer while losing weight.


Firstly, take advantage of the abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables for summer weight loss

Summer is the peak season for a variety of produce such as berries, tomatoes, cucumbers, bell peppers, and leafy greens. These foods are not only low in calories but also packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that are vital for overall health. Aim for at least 5 servings per day.


Quench Your Thirst Without the Calories!

Hydration is another crucial aspect of summer health. With higher temperatures and increased outdoor activities, it's essential to stay well-hydrated. While water is the best choice, you can also hydrate with foods that have high water content. Fruits like watermelon, strawberries, and cantaloupe, as well as vegetables like cucumbers and zucchini, are excellent choices to help keep you hydrated. Additionally, homemade smoothies and chilled soups can be refreshing and nutritious options to beat the heat.


See my full list of dietitian-approved mock-tails HERE.


Grill Your Way to Healthy Cooking Success!

Summer is perfect for outdoor cooking, particularly grilling, which can be a healthy cooking method when done right. Grilling enhances the flavor of lean proteins such as chicken, fish, and tofu without the need for excessive oils or heavy sauces. Pairing grilled proteins with fresh vegetable salads or whole grains creates balanced meals that are both satisfying and nutritious. Remember to use marinades and seasonings that are low in added sugars and sodium to keep your meals healthy. I like to grill a bunch of vegetables so I can use them in salads, sandwiches, wraps and sides during the week.


Keep it Cool!

Don't forget easy egg, tuna, and chicken salads along with beans and grains for a cold salad. Pairing protein with a high-fiber grain plus a vegetable or fruit, makes a great cool meal on a hot day! (High fiber grains, like quinoa, barley, buckwheat, bulgar wheat or wheat berries.)

Need some tuna inspiration? Check out my article HERE.


Here's a cheatsheet of some foods to keep on hand in the summer!


Proteins

High-Fiber Starches

Summer Fruits

Summer Vegetables

Chicken (& rotisserie/canned/frozen unbreaded strips), fish (including canned tuna/salmon/sardines), turkey (including deli), tofu, natural soy/edamame, Greek yogurt, Cottage cheese, nuts & nut butters (1/4 cup & 1 Tbsp are portions, respectively), Milk (cow and soy), Eggs, low fat cheeses (including string cheese & ricotta), beans

Barley, bulgar wheat, buckwheat, brown rice/pasta, farro, wheat berries, whole grain cereal, oats, whole wheat breads

Apricots, bananas, cherries, figs, lemons, limes, mangos, nectarines, peaches, plums, raspberries, strawberries, and watermelon, blueberries, blackberries

Asian pear, basil, beets, bell peppers, butter lettuce, corn, cucumbers, eggplant, grape tomatoes, green beans, honeydew melons, okra, summer squash, tomatillos, and zucchini


Tired of yo-yo dieting? Do you want to lose weight for good the healthy way? Learn to eat & exercise for your changing hormones & ditch guilt around food in my habit-based group coaching program, Ditch the Diets.




Here are 10 easy, healthy summer meal ideas to fill you up and keep you slim this summer!


1. Black Bean and Corn Salad with Grilled Shrimp

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup cooked black beans (15g protein, 15g fiber)

  • 1/2 cup grilled corn kernels (2g protein, 2g fiber)

  • 10 medium grilled shrimp (about 18g protein)

  • 1/2 red bell pepper, diced (1g fiber)

  • 1/2 avocado, diced (10g fiber)

  • 1/4 cup chopped red onion

  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro

  • Juice of 1 lime

  • 1 tbsp olive oil

  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

  1. Grill the shrimp until fully cooked.

  2. In a large bowl, combine black beans, grilled corn, red bell pepper, avocado, red onion, and cilantro.

  3. Add the grilled shrimp to the bowl.

  4. Drizzle with lime juice and olive oil, and season with salt and pepper.

  5. Toss everything together and serve cold.


2. Turkey and Veggie Lettuce Wraps

Ingredients:

  • 4 large lettuce leaves

  • 1 cup ground turkey, cooked (22g protein)

  • 1/2 cup shredded carrots (1g fiber)

  • 1/2 cup diced cucumber (0.5g fiber)

  • 1/2 cup diced red bell pepper (1g fiber)

  • 1/4 cup chopped green onions

  • 2 tbsp low-sodium soy sauce

  • 1 tbsp rice vinegar

  • 1 tsp sesame oil

  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds

Instructions:

  1. Cook the ground turkey until fully browned.

  2. In a bowl, mix the cooked turkey with shredded carrots, cucumber, red bell pepper, and green onions.

  3. Add soy sauce, rice vinegar, and sesame oil, and mix well.

  4. Spoon the mixture onto lettuce leaves and sprinkle with sesame seeds.

  5. Wrap the lettuce around the filling and enjoy.


3. Greek Chickpea Salad

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup cooked chickpeas (15g protein, 12g fiber)

  • 1/2 cup diced cucumber (0.5g fiber)

  • 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved (1g fiber)

  • 1/4 cup diced red onion

  • 1/4 cup Kalamata olives, sliced (1g fiber)

  • 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese (4g protein)

  • 1 tbsp olive oil

  • Juice of 1 lemon

  • 1 tsp dried oregano

  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

  1. In a large bowl, combine chickpeas, cucumber, cherry tomatoes, red onion, and olives.

  2. Add crumbled feta cheese.

  3. Drizzle with olive oil and lemon juice, and sprinkle with dried oregano, salt, and pepper.

  4. Toss everything together and serve chilled.


4. Quinoa and Edamame Buddha Bowl

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup cooked quinoa (4g protein, 2.5g fiber)

  • 1/2 cup shelled edamame (8g protein, 4g fiber)

  • 1/2 cup shredded red cabbage (1g fiber)

  • 1/2 cup grated carrot (1g fiber)

  • 1/2 avocado, sliced (10g fiber)

  • 1/4 cup sliced radishes

  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds

  • 2 tbsp low-sodium soy sauce

  • 1 tbsp rice vinegar

  • 1 tsp sesame oil

Instructions:

  1. Cook the quinoa and edamame according to package instructions.

  2. In a bowl, layer the quinoa, edamame, shredded cabbage, grated carrot, avocado slices, and radishes.

  3. Sprinkle with sesame seeds.

  4. In a small bowl, whisk together soy sauce, rice vinegar, and sesame oil.

  5. Drizzle the dressing over the Buddha bowl and serve.


5. Grilled Tofu and Vegetable Skewers

Ingredients:

  • 1 block firm tofu, cubed (20g protein)

  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into chunks (1g fiber)

  • 1 zucchini, sliced (1g fiber)

  • 1 red onion, cut into chunks (1g fiber)

  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes (2g fiber)

  • 2 tbsp olive oil

  • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar

  • 1 tsp dried oregano

  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the grill to medium-high heat.

  2. Thread the tofu and vegetables onto skewers.

  3. In a bowl, mix olive oil, balsamic vinegar, dried oregano, salt, and pepper.

  4. Brush the skewers with the marinade.

  5. Grill the skewers for about 10-12 minutes, turning occasionally, until the vegetables are tender and the tofu is slightly charred.

  6. Serve the skewers hot.


6. Grilled Chicken Salad with Quinoa and Fresh Veggies

Ingredients:

  • 4 oz grilled chicken breast (about 20g protein)

  • 1/2 cup cooked quinoa (4g protein, 2.5g fiber)

  • 1 cup mixed greens (1g fiber)

  • 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved (1g fiber)

  • 1/2 cucumber, sliced (0.5g fiber)

  • 1/4 red onion, thinly sliced

  • 1 tbsp olive oil

  • Juice of 1 lemon

  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

  1. Grill the chicken breast until fully cooked, then slice it.

  2. In a large bowl, combine mixed greens, cherry tomatoes, cucumber, and red onion.

  3. Add the cooked quinoa and grilled chicken to the bowl.

  4. Drizzle with olive oil and lemon juice, and season with salt and pepper.

  5. Toss everything together and serve cold.


7. Lentil and Avocado Stuffed Bell Peppers

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup cooked lentils (18g protein, 15.6g fiber)

  • 2 bell peppers, halved and seeds removed

  • 1 avocado, diced (10g fiber)

  • 1/2 cup corn kernels (2g protein, 2g fiber)

  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro

  • 1 lime, juiced

  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the grill to medium-high heat.

  2. Grill the bell pepper halves for about 5 minutes, until they are slightly charred but still firm.

  3. In a bowl, mix the cooked lentils, avocado, corn, and cilantro.

  4. Add lime juice, salt, and pepper, and mix well.

  5. Stuff the grilled bell peppers with the lentil mixture and serve immediately.


8. Greek Yogurt and Berry Parfait

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup Greek yogurt (20g protein)

  • 1/2 cup mixed berries (4g fiber)

  • 1 tbsp chia seeds (2g protein, 5g fiber)

  • 1/4 cup granola (2g protein, 2g fiber)

Instructions:

  1. In a glass or bowl, layer half of the Greek yogurt.

  2. Add a layer of mixed berries and sprinkle with chia seeds.

  3. Add the remaining Greek yogurt.

  4. Top with granola and more berries.

  5. Serve immediately or chill in the refrigerator for a refreshing treat.


9. Grilled Salmon with Asparagus and Brown Rice

Ingredients:

  • 4 oz grilled salmon (22g protein)

  • 1 cup cooked brown rice (5g protein, 3.5g fiber)

  • 1 cup grilled asparagus (2g protein, 3g fiber)

  • 1 tbsp olive oil

  • Salt and pepper to taste

  • Lemon wedges for serving

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the grill to medium-high heat.

  2. Brush the salmon fillet and asparagus with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

  3. Grill the salmon for about 4-5 minutes per side, until it flakes easily with a fork.

  4. Grill the asparagus for about 3-4 minutes, until tender.

  5. Serve the grilled salmon and asparagus over a bed of brown rice, with lemon wedges on the side.


10. Chickpea and Veggie Wrap

Ingredients:

  • 1 whole grain wrap (3g protein, 3g fiber)

  • 1/2 cup cooked chickpeas (7g protein, 6g fiber)

  • 1/4 cup hummus (4g protein, 2g fiber)

  • 1 cup spinach (1g fiber)

  • 1/2 cup shredded carrots (1g fiber)

  • 1/2 cup sliced cucumber (0.5g fiber)

  • 1/4 red bell pepper, sliced (0.5g fiber)

Instructions:

  1. Spread the hummus evenly over the whole grain wrap.

  2. Layer the spinach, chickpeas, carrots, cucumber, and red bell pepper on top.

  3. Roll up the wrap tightly, cut in half, and serve cold.


By focusing on fresh, seasonal produce, staying hydrated, and utilizing healthy cooking methods, you can enjoy a delicious and nutritious diet all summer long. This approach not only supports your health but also allows you to savor the best flavors of the season.

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