Denise’s Summer Tips

For keeping you slim, energized and having fun!

 Summer can be tricky: vacations, cookouts and travel create a break from the usual routine. It’s good to relax and enjoy the warmer weather socializing with family and friends, but if you aren’t careful, it can lead to substantial weight gain by the end of the summer.

A beautiful day with friends & family

Here are my 5 tips for a fun & healthy summer season.

1.     Stick to your morning routine – a must!

I start the day with

  • Lemon water with turmeric – for cleansing the liver and the anti-inflammatory benefits of the turmeric
  • Greens for breakfast – green smoothie or a soft-boiled egg over kale
  • Move the body – yoga, walk, swim – just do something! It is critical to balance the extra calories consumed from alcohol, cookouts, and parties.

 2.     Eat mostly Veggies

To quote Michael Pollan, “Eat food – Not too much – Mostly Plants”

  • I love this Macadamia nut spread. It’s versatile, filling and you don’t have to worry about it spoiling in the sun. For lunch, I like to put it on a romaine lettuce boat or over spinach.
  • Use it as a dip with cucumbers or romaine lettuce for your chips.
  • Macadamia nuts contain palmitoleic acid, which helps keep skin cells healthy and beautiful. This special fatty acid may also help boost your metabolism and helps you burn fat more efficiently, while curbing your appetite.
  • Macadamia nuts contain essential omega-3 fatty acids and are high in monounsaturated fat, which is a “good” fat, similar to the kind found in olive oil.

Use a cucumber for your chip!

Macadamia Nut & Sundried Tomato Spread
Yield: 1 cup


  • 1 cup raw, unsalted macadamia nuts
  • 2 Tbs fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup sundried tomato, chopped
  • 1/4 cup Katamala olives, pitted
  • 1/4 tsp. Celtic or Himalayan sea salt
  • 2 Tbs parsley, finely chopped (any variety)
  • Black pepper to taste


  1. Place the macadamia nuts in a food processor with lemon juice, and blend well. Add the sundried tomato, olives and sea salt, and blend again. The mixture will be moist and “crumbly” but not wet.
  2. Spoon the mixture into a bowl, and mix in the parsley throughout the whole mixture.
  3. This is great to fill a celery stalk, cucumber boat or in a romaine lettuce leaf topped with avocado.

 3.     Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate!

  • Ultima is a great for after exercise

    Keep a pitcher of water with sliced cucumber in your refrigerator. Basil is nice, too. Drinking water will keep your energy up, flush toxins and keep your skin supple.

  • If you ever notice that you are feeling tired or your kids are a bit cranky, it’s probably because of dehydration: everyone just needs a big glass of water!
  • After a workout, you will need to add some electrolytes to your water. Don’t reach for Gatoraid! Drink coconut water or Ultima replenisher – it has no artificial colors, flavors or sweeteners – you can find at Whole Foods.

4.     How to handle Alcohol? Carefully!

  • I know it’s summer and for some of us (me, included) a beer or refreshing cocktail while watching the sun setting is ahhhh. The  drinks hardest on our liver are brewed, like beer, tequila or rum. They cause sugar imbalances and bloating. Really need a cocktail? Vodka is a good choice.
  • Then there’s red wine — a good choice because of the antioxidants and flavanoids. But, it still contains sugar, so all alcohol should be treated as a dessert. Having a cocktail? Skip the after-dinner brownie!  Load your glass with ice or drink a glass of water along with your cocktail. This will keep you from drinking too much, keep you hydrated and feeling better in the morning. Penta water or Coconut water are great options for hydrating. Drink rehydrating liquids before bedtime and upon waking in the morning.
  • So simple and refreshing!

    In the summer I like to have a batch of my Kombucha Sangria on hand. Sangria is a classic summertime drink: light and refreshing. To make it healthier and with less sugar, I add a hibiscus or lavender Kombucha for the sparkle. It’s easy & great for guests.

5.     Last but not least: relax & enjoy!

  • Listen to music, savor time with your family and friends, enjoy the out-of-doors.
  • We have heard it over and over “it’s all about balance.” It truly is–if you overindulge a bit, don’t beat your self up. Embrace the choice that you made at that moment. Then pick one or two healthy habits that you know you can stick with and proceed forward.
  • Remember, living a healthy lifestyle is not an all or nothing approach: it takes practice and perseverance!

Enjoy the sunshine and I hope with a few of my tips, you will be able to continue on a path of energy and vitality for Life!

— Denise

Summer Drinks

Denise’s Quick Kombucha Sangria
Serves 6-8


  • 1 bottle medium-bodied red wine (such as Malbec or Rioja)
  • 2 cups peach nectar
  • 1 bottle Lavender Kombucha
  • 2 peaches, thinly sliced
  • Ice

In a large pitcher, combine red wine, peach nectar and peaches. When ready to serve, add Lavender Kombucha. Serve over ice.


Berry Vodka Spritzer
Serves 4


  • 2 limes
  • 1 liter club soda
  • 1 cup berry-flavored vodka
  • 1 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1 cup frozen raspberries
  • Ice

Halve the limes and squeeze the juice into a pitcher. Add the club soda, vodka, blueberries, and raspberries. Pour over ice.


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