Summer is a time for friends and family to celebrate warm weather and spend fun times with one another. But as a medical weight loss patient, these holiday barbecues and picnics can quickly lead to weight loss woes if you are unprepared.
Luckily, there’s still time to prepare yourself for the summer season and all the delicious foods that come along with it. There are plenty of tricks weight loss patients can employ to ensure healthy eating. Here’s a guide on how to maintain weight loss while participating in summer get-togethers.
1. Don’t Show Up to a Gathering Hungry
When you show up to a gathering salivating at the sight of the buffet, you’re more likely to overeat than if you were to enjoy a healthy snack beforehand. Before you head to a summertime party, eat a healthy, fibrous piece of fruit or veggie (like an apple or fresh broccoli) with a big glass of water. This will help keep you full, satisfied, and less likely to start snacking right away. Better yet, a meal replacement bar or protein shake on the drive over will help control your appetite despite the smells and sights of a summer barbecue.
2. Watch Your Portion Sizes
Many summer get-togethers are known to have large paper plates. This enables guests to fill up their plates a first time and then grab another for the next go-around. This endless portion parade can be very harmful to your waistline. So it’s best to pay extra attention to what and how much goes on your plate.
If possible, try to grab a smaller paper plate to put your food on, like the ones set out for dessert. This will help you keep portion sizes to a minimum—especially if you don’t head to the buffet line more than once.
3. Make Your One Trip to the Buffet Count
On top of choosing a smaller plate, try to do a lap down the buffet line before grabbing a plate. This pinpoints where the healthiest choices are. Once you’ve filled up your plate, move away from the buffet table and avoid socializing while selecting your food. This may tempt you to pile up your plate again and can lead to overeating.
To make sure that there are healthy choices, come with a fruit or vegetable tray. That way you are guaranteed to have something healthy to snack on.
4. Balance Party Food With Your Medical Weight Loss Plan
Depending on your individualized weight loss plan, you may be participating in a partial or full meal replacement program. So don’t be afraid to bring your meal replacement products with you to the party. Not only will this keep you from indulging in the buffet. It will also help you establish healthy eating habits when confronted with food temptations.
There is no reason to conceal the fact that you are taking steps to be healthier. You can actually do your family and friends a favor by setting a good example. If you are uncomfortable with displaying your shakes, pour them into a water bottle, portable coffee cup, or thermos to take with you.
5. Watch Out for High-Caloric Beverages
Many summer parties offer guests unhealthy drinks to choose from like alcoholic beverages, lemonades, sweet teas, and sodas. Make sure you avoid these drinks as they can contain just as many calories—and much more sugar—than some food items at the buffet. This is especially true for alcohol.
Take into account that mindless eating dramatically increases when drinking alcohol. Plus you’re probably much more of a lightweight now that you’ve shed some pounds. You are apt to feel the effects of alcohol much faster now that there is less fat to absorb it. Stick with water when at a party. You can refill your cup as many times as you’d like without having to count calories.
6. Keep Up With Your Fitness Program
Though it’s summer and time is precious, it’s still necessary to engage in daily physical activity to maintain your weight loss efforts. Use the warm weather to your advantage to mix up your fitness routine for added fun. Instead of hitting the gym, try biking, hiking, swimming, or kayaking. And always be sure to workout the morning before a party!
Delectable Summer Foods for Effective Weight Loss
Being on a medical weight loss program does not mean that you have to forgo delicious food. In fact, summer is the best time to eat fresh, satisfying meals. Here is a round-up of our favorites:
- Grilled vegetables: Asparagus, zucchini, and corn are all great on the grill. And let’s be honest, cooking veggies with olive oil and delicious spices is much more enjoyable than consuming them raw.
- Chilled soups: Head to your seasonal farmer’s markets to pick up ingredients for cold squash soup gazpacho. And try other refreshing recipes too!
- Juicy watermelon: This sweet fruit has a high water content, which means that its calorie count is low. Eat it by the slice, cubed, or throw it in the blender for a delicious smoothie. What a healthy way to satiate your desire for sweets!
- Fresh fruit: Summer is the peak season for peaches, cherries, and other delights. Ripe fruits need little more than a sprinkle of sugar to make a satisfying dessert.
- Dynamic salads: Don’t feel limited to just lettuce. Try making refreshing, cold salads with whole grains, beans, and chopped vegetables. It’s a delicious change of pace that keeps you and your kitchen cool.
Embrace the Summer While Sustaining Your Weight Loss Goals
Survive this summer season by maintaining healthy lifestyle choices and eating habits. Every effort counts when it comes to your medical weight loss program. So remember some of these tricks at your next summer get-together.
What do you do if you slip up and indulge at a summer soiree? Shift into maintenance mode. Lean into things that have helped you maintain weight loss in the past, like eating your meal replacements, writing in your food diary, and getting regular exercise. And if you find yourself having trouble staying on track, give us a call!