With a bounty of produce at your fingertips, it’s easy to follow a healthy, clean-eating plan during the spring and summer months. But, since the warmer weather also brings about more social events, such as backyard barbecues, pool parties and road trips, choosing the right foods may still be a challenge. Our 14 days of clean meals can help you stay on track while allowing you the freedom to get outside for some fun in the sun.
Focusing on light, simple salads, broiled meats and fresh fruits, our meal plan, which totals 1,500 to 1,800 daily calories, provides enough energy to keep you going even when you’re busy but is light enough to keep you lean. Since a majority of the mini meals come together quickly – many can even be prepared in advance – watching what you eat won’t interrupt your summer game plan. (Our four full recipes each take a max of 35 minutes to whip together from start to finish!)
Be flexible and take advantage of the seasonal produce in your area. Use our menu plan to guide you, but don’t be afraid to mix and match fruits and vegetables to suit your tastes – especially if it means enjoying your Clean Eating meals all the more!
Download the Shopping List & Meal Plan Here.
Looking To Cut Calories?
Whether your small frame simply doesn’t require 1,500 to 1,800 calories per day or you’re looking to lose a couple of pounds, take heed to these strategies to shave off 100 to 200 calories daily from your Clean Eating meal plan.
1. Skip a Snack
Keep breakfast the same as listed in the meal plan. The National Weight Control Registry, research on successful weight-loss maintainers, reveals that the majority eats breakfast. To cut daily calories, eliminate one snack or reduce the size of one or two snacks. For instance, you can skip your mid-morning snack or only eat half of the recommended serving at each of the two daily snacks.
Saves You: 150 to 200 calories per snack reduction
2. Cut Some Fat
Each tablespoon of fat (even healthy fats), such as nut butters and olive oil, contains about 100 calories. Measuring spoons are useful to accurately reduce portions. (Many people eyeball the amount of oil they’re pouring into a pan or salad, and it can total well over three tablespoons!) So, use one tablespoon for hummus, nut butters and all oils. Instead of one ounce of unsalted nuts, keep it to a half-ounce, which equals 10 to 12 almonds, eight cashews or seven walnut halves. You’ll trim down fat while still getting one to two grams of filling fiber per serving.
Saves You: 100 calories per table-spoon reduction of fat and about 100 calories per half-ounce nut reduction
3. Skinny Down Salads
Omit one or two extras from your leafy green meals — think nuts, seeds, dried fruit or cheese.
Saves You: 100 calories per omission
4. Watch For Extras
It’s natural not to account for slight deviations from the meal plan (remember that glass of wine at dinner, the extra spoonful of peanut butter or your kids’ leftovers?). But these omissions can add up quickly and often go unnoticed, leaving you asking yourself, “If I’m eating clean and working out, how come I’m just not losing weight?”
Saves You: 100 calories or more per deviation
Proper hydration is a top priority this time of year. Most health experts recommend consuming between eight and 12 cups of liquid a day. If you’re exercising, plan on adding two or three more cups, sipped before, during and after any activity.