Seven Foods to cheat your way to the Perfect Summer Body

Summer is the time of cookouts and BBQ’s, and there always seems to be big temptations in the food department staring us in the face. However, you can eat and enjoy the season while keeping a fit body. People will marvel at how you are always eating and still look fabulous. No need to tell them your secrets! Here are seven foods to cheat your way to the perfect summer body.

summer body diet

  1. Avocado: This dense fruit is amazingly good for you. Avocados are full of Omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids actually reduce belly fat, so keep a few on hand for a quick snack or make a homemade avocado spread to replace mayonnaise on your favorite sandwich.
  2. Greek yogurt: Substitute regular yogurt for Greek yogurt. They have less sugar and more protein as well as probiotics which help the digestive system. Add your own berries or other fruits and forgo the “fruited” versions which have more calories and sugar.
  3. Oatmeal: Oatmeal is a great summer time breakfast. Studies have shown that people who regularly eat breakfast don’t gain as much weight over time. Oatmeal is chock full of fiber and protein. Eating oatmeal for breakfast will help you feel full and satisfied.
  4. Eggs: Contrary to everything we have been told, eggs are not bad for you! Eggs are full of protein and help us build muscle and burn fat. In moderation, eggs can be a healthy part of your diet. If cholesterol is an issue, use mostly the whites and keep the yolk from only one egg.
  5. Leafy greens: Pack your salads and sandwiches with more leafy greens than anything else. Leafy greens are filling and full of antioxidants and vitamins. Use a spring mix for salads or mix your iceberg lettuce with spinach leaves to get the dark green veggies. Forgo the high calorie, sugary salad dressings and your salad becomes super healthy. A good substitute for salad dressing is red wine or balsamic vinegar with very little or no oil added.
  6. Berries: Berries are full of antioxidants that improve blood flow in the body which can make your work outs more efficient. Substituting just one snack that is high is carbs and sugar with berries can have tremendous health benefits. Yes, berries do have natural sugar, but they are much better for you than candy or chips! For a great summer snack, freeze a variety of fresh berries and bag them up for a refreshing, cool snack on the go.
  7. Nuts: Nuts are full of protein and good fats. They are a great mid-afternoon snack when you feel drained or a great addition to that leafy green salad above. Nuts will help you feel fuller, longer than a sugary snack. If you are trying to lose weight, reach for unsalted almonds or walnuts for optimal benefits.

These seven foods to cheat your way to the perfect summer body will help you stay on track with your fitness goals while letting you enjoy great summer snacks without guilt!

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Blueberry Muffin Recipes

Blueberry Muffin

Nothing says fall like the familiar taste of homemade blueberry muffins fresh out of the oven. It's a great reminder of summer's sweet fruits while wrapped in a warm, comforting muffin. Best of all, you can customize them any way you want. Whether you're looking for traditional, inexpensive, or low-fat muffin , we've got you covered when that blueberry muffin craving pops up.

 

Traditional Blueberry Muffins

This recipe makes eight large, tasty muffins that look like they've just come from a New York City deli bakery. But you can also pour the mix into smaller muffin tins if you want to serve bite-size muffins instead of larger ones. This muffin recipe also comes with a delicious crumb mixture to sprinkle on top.

  • Preheat the oven to 400 F and grease the muffin tins. While this recipe is designed for larger muffins, it'll also work well with smaller bite-sized tins.
  • Mix 1.5 cups white flour, .75 cups of sugar, half a teaspoon of salt, and two teaspoons of baking powder.
  • In a measuring cup, add one-third cup vegetable oil, one-third cup milk, and an egg.
  • Mix the measuring cup ingredients into the flour mixture and then fold in one cup of fresh or frozen blueberries (depending on the season, frozen blueberries are a good option because they're less expensive).
  • For the crumb topping, mix half a cup of sugar, a quarter cup of butter, one-third cup of flour, and two teaspoons of cinnamon.
  • Pour muffin mixture into tins and sprinkle the crumb topping on top.
  • Bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown.

 

Low-Fat Blueberry Muffins

At 100 calories per muffin, this is an easy no-guilt recipe if you're trying to watch your calorie intake. Heavier ingredients like butter and whole milk are replaced with applesauce and skim milk to create muffins that still have a great taste, but are a little lighter on the fat and calories.

  • Preheat oven to 400 F and add muffin cups. This particular recipe calls for 16 muffin cups (that's how 100 calories per muffin was calculated.) But you can use different tins to make larger or smaller muffins.
  • Mix 1.5 cups white flour, 2 teaspoons baking powder, and 2 teaspoons cinnamon together. Then add one-third cup applesauce, three-quarters cup of white sugar, one egg, one-third cup skim milk, and one teaspoon vanilla extract into the flour mix.
  • Fold in 2 cups of blueberries (fresh or frozen).
  • Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown.

 

No-Bake Blueberry Muffin In A Mug

This is the perfect recipe for college kids who don't have access to a full kitchen, or anyone who wants a quick and inexpensive snack.

  • In a mug, mix together a quarter cup flour, one tablespoon brown sugar, and a tiny pinch of cinnamon and salt.
  • Add half a tablespoon of butter and mix together in the mug.
  • Add two tablespoons of milk and two tablespoons of blueberries into the mug.
  • Microwave on high for two minutes (depending on your microwave, it may take more or less time).

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