Summer is right around the corner and with it comes warmer temps and more outdoor activities. One of the most important things to remember in the heat is to stay hydrated, especially since we lose more water through perspiration. Water is a great option, but doesn’t have to be the only one if you are managing your weight.

A new study recently published in the journal Obesity showed people who drank diet beverages with low-and-no-calorie sweeteners as part of a behavioral weight management program had significantly greater weight loss than those who drank only water (13 lbs. to 9 lbs). They also felt less hungry and experienced greater reductions in “bad” cholesterol. This is great news for those who like to quench their thirst with other beverages in addition to water.

Here are some more tips to help get your body and mind ready for the summer season:

  1. Eat balanced meals and snacks throughout the day. There are two parts to this tip: eat throughout the day and eat balanced meals and snacks. Skipping meals won’t help you keep your weight in check; rather, it can lead to weight gain as your metabolism slows down. Begin your day with breakfast to start your engine, and eat every three to four hours to keep it going. And don’t skip out on those snacks made up of a combo of high-fiber carbs and protein or healthy fat. According to a recent study by the NPD group, people with the healthiest lifestyles are the most frequent snackers.  
  2. Clean out your pantry. Spring is commonly thought of as the time to clean out the cabinets, but every season offers an opportunity for a fresh start. Empty out your fridge, freezer, and kitchen pantry in an effort to eliminate foods that are spoiled or don’t fit with your dietary goals. Restock your kitchen with essentials like olive oil, spices and dried herbs, whole grains, low-fat dairy, lean protein, and fruits and vegetables.
  3. Get moving! A healthy lifestyle is all about balancing calories in with calories out. Don’t worry if you can’t get in 30 minutes straight. Research has found that as long as the total energy expended is the same, it may not matter if you divide your workout into short bursts throughout the day. Surely you can find three 10-minute blocks of time to move your body!
Jessica Fishman Levinson, MS, RDN, CDN is a registered dietitian nutritionist, the founder of Nutritioulicious, and consultant to food and beverage companies, including The Coca-Cola Company.