How to stay on track with your lifestyle habits during the summer

Healthy eating
ice cream on a cone at the beach

We are (finally) at the dawn of the hot season! As temperatures rise and the sun makes its appearance, barbecues and terraces begin to populate the landscape. While some people rejoice, many anticipate the temptations that come with the summer season. Cocktails, barbecues, ice cream, chips... what if summer were a source of pleasure rather than guilt?

Here are 3 tips to enjoy the summer while maintaining healthy lifestyle habits.

1. Allow yourself to eat all the foods available to you

This doesn't mean you will eat poorly all summer! By placing all foods on an equal footing, once "forbidden" foods will no longer appear as attractive. Have you ever forbidden a child from doing something? What was their reaction? Often, the child becomes even more tempted by what has been banned. Why? Because prohibitions are alluring! The same phenomenon occurs when a person restricts themselves from eating certain foods based on specific criteria. The desire to gravitate towards those foods increases. Instead of setting rigid rules and categorizing foods as good or bad, allow yourself to have anything and focus on what you truly want.

Choose foods that bring you happiness and make you feel physically and mentally good, while respecting the valuable signals your body sends you.

2. Savor seasonal foods

To savor food is to become aware of its texture and flavors. It's about being present in the moment and focusing on each bite rather than constantly preparing for the next one. It's about enjoying the meal, the people who share it with us, and the sun that makes it all the more enjoyable.

Summer is the perfect season to learn to savor food, as a variety of seasonal fruits and vegetables are available in farmers' markets. They are fresh, juicy, naturally sweet, and packed with nutrients. Highlight them in salads, raw vegetables, homemade pizzas, vegetable skewers, or fruit platters. And to stay hydrated, why not flavor your water by adding fruits, vegetables, and herbs? Check out these infused water recipes for inspiration!

3. Engage in a sport you enjoy

It is often said that the best sport for your health is the one you prefer. And it's true! Furthermore, the good weather allows for a variety of outdoor sports. Walking, running, yoga, baseball, tennis, soccer, cycling, rollerblading, swimming, basketball... in Quebec, we are fortunate to have outdoor facilities nearby to exercise under the sun. Outdoor enthusiasts? Try hiking, kayaking, canoeing, paddleboarding, and mountain biking. Set specific and realistic goals for yourself and move for pleasure.

With that, have a great summer!

Registered Dietitian Nutritionist