Summer is upon us. To help you make the most of it, Health & Happiness magazine picked up some tips from nutritionist, herbalist and life coach to help you achieve optimal health.

When summer comes, we go out of hibernation, and go in search of ideas to get fit. Since we know your time is valuable, we’ve found several ideas for small changes you can make to your lifestyle, to be in the best of health this summer without having to expend all your free time.

Nutritionist Tips

Nutritionists recommend focusing your diet on vegetables, or eating foods made mostly with whole grains, legumes, fruits, vegetables and nuts. You should eat more vegetables to prevent cancer and the degenerative diseases caused by excess fat. Plants contain fiber and carbohydrates. These will give you energy. By opting for this type of diet, your digestion will be easier, your intestines work better, you will lose weight more easily, and the work of your liver and kidneys will be well-facilitated.

Nutritionists advise you to opt for organic products, which contain fewer pesticides and contain more vitamins and minerals. Eating fruits and vegetables is a good way to rehydrate, too, because they are full of water.

It would be ideal to eat less fat and protein. Some of you may already be waiting impatiently for summer barbecues. Be aware that when you roast your meat on the barbecue, cooking toxins are released. Nutritionists suggest you use the barbecue the least possible, or use it for cooking vegetables only. It is also preferable to avoid excesses of cheese, a food that is even fattier than meat.

Advice from a Life Coach

The coach advises you to take every opportunity that presents itself to move. When you go to the park with the kids, run and walk with them. All exercises are cumulative. Take time to walk for 10 minutes during your lunch hour. Enjoy your family time to go for a walk or mountain bike, and do errands on foot.

If you’re the sedentary type and haven’t exercised in the winter, the trainer recommends that you start by walking. It’s a great way to reconnect with sports and fitness. It is suggested that at least three or four steps per week, lasting at least 30 minutes, is ideal.

You need to walk fast and intense to get to the point that you’re slightly breathless. The important thing, however, is to go at your pace. Rather than starting a sprint for 30 minutes, the coach suggests that you alternate between walking and running. It is also important to work on your muscle tone, as in your thirties, muscles can atrophy if you do not pay them their due attention.

If you’re already active, complete your training with an activity that relates to what you like.

Advice from an Herbalist

The herbalist advises you to enjoy the freshness of food and the culinary herbs that are in abundance during summer. Include fresh herbs in your drinks and your food; this will bring great benefits. The herbalist recommends that you buy plants that attract you by their smell, appearance and taste. This is often a sign that it contains some nutrients you need.

In summer, however, you should beware of St. John’s Wort, an herb that can increase light sensitivity in some people, and can make streaks appear on the skin when exposed to sunlight.

You can also opt for a cleansing of your body. Add dandelion leaves, violet, purple, sorrel, and yarrow to salads at the beginning of summer, and voila. In times of great heat, cayenne and ginger can help you regulate your body temperature.

Some Plants that Help You Be at Your Best

  • Rosemary: energizes, supports the work of the liver and kidneys, improves mood.
  • Basil: aids digestion, soothes the nervous people and insomniacs, antiseptic.
  • Dill: helps get rid of flatulence, aids digestion.
  • Melissa: helps those who are struggling to digest because of their emotions.
  • Sage: aids digestion, helps those who lack appetite, regulates perspiration and mucus.
  • Mint: aids digestion, is refreshing.
  • Thyme: is antiseptic, helps to recover from summer colds, regulates the stomach caused by food poisoning.

Iced Infusion of Mint

  • Fill a juice jar, 2/3 with mint tea and 1/3 with apple juice.
  • Add the juice of half a lemon.
  • Refrigerate for several hours and drink.
  • You can substitute mint or lemon balm and lemon thyme.