Imagine a world in which you could eat all your favorite foods without gaining a pound. The succulent meats, steaming-hot sides, and buttery desserts are all right there for the taking, and you don't have to feel an ounce of guilt for indulging. Sounds like a place you might want to be, right? Well, open your back door my friend, because this promised land exists, and I'm here to help you discover it.
The secret to turning your own backyard into a nutritional Narnia is your grill. That's right, the thing you use to char burgers every Memorial Day. If you can produce a flame, you learn to grill like a superstar and eat like royalty—and still lose 10, 20, 30 pounds, or more this summer.
That’s why we developed the all-new Grill This, Not That! Backyard Survival Guide. It's a revolutionary grilling manual jam-packed with secrets for slimming down and staying well-fed all summer. In it you'll find 150 recipes, from grilled pastas and desserts to mouthwatering burgers and pork chops. They're easy enough for a novice griller but flavorful enough to impress a seasoned vet.
To get your summer started right, I've provided 10 rules that you should keep in mind as you're firing up your grill. Follow these and you're guaranteed to have your slimmest summer yet. And make sure you check out our full list of 20 Summer Weight Loss Secrets from the Grill!
Healthy Grilling Tip #1: Don't fear red meat
A 2010 study in the New England Journal of Medicine found that a diet high in protein and low in processed carbs was the most effective for weight loss, and the B vitamins in meat help your body convert nutrients into energy. Another perk of protein? Your body also has to work harder to digest it, so when you eat, say, a steak, you stay fuller longer than you would if you ate a bagel. The key is to cut down on the greasy ribs and switch to lean cuts, which have a higher protein-to-fat ratio. Try flank steak. With only 176 calories per 4-ounce serving, flank is one of the leanest cuts at the meat counter, and it offers an impressive 24 grams of protein.
Healthy Grilling Tip #2: Switch to whole grain buns
A 2008 study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that a diet high in whole grains resulted in a greater decrease in body fat (particularly around the belly) than a diet high in refined grains. The whole-grain dieters also saw a 38 percent decrease in C-reactive protein (CRP), a marker of inflammation. The best low-calorie option? Arnold Select 100% Whole Wheat Sandwich Thins. Each bun provides an impressive 5 grams of fiber in only 100 calories. Your tastebuds won't know the difference, but your waistband will!
Healthy Grilling Tip #3: Add spice
The best fight-fighting spices are chili and cayenne pepper. A 2011 study in the Journal of Food Science and Nutrition found that capsaicin—the spicy compound found in the peppers—promoted weight loss in a group of overweight rats. Capsaicin has also been shown to suppress appetite, boost metabolism, and fight inflammation. Try mixing the cayenne with cumin, garlic powder, salt, and pepper and rubbing it on a steak before grilling.