It’s that time of year when the beach body beckons, so you’re trying to squeeze in a last minute diet in time for your holiday. Fortunately summer is one of the best times of year for enjoying healthy food, as there are so many delicious healthy summer foods. Try our top seasonally-focused tips to enjoy good food with fewer calories.

Embrace a Mediterranean diet

It’s easier to forego the stodge and eat lighter when the sun shines. As well as making it easier to manage your weight, a Mediterranean-style diet based around fish, colourful veg, nuts and olive oil will boost your health too.

Top seasonal hacks

Swap to feta – perfect for salads, this tasty cheese has 100 calories in a 40g chunk, compared with 166 calories in the same size portion of Cheddar.

Go Greek for breakfast. A 150g portion of 0% Greek yoghurt has the same number of calories as a boiled egg (around 85), but twice as much appetite-curbing protein. To add sweetness, stir in a few drops of Canderel Zero.

Used smashed avocado as a spread. It works brilliantly in savoury wraps and sandwiches and has only a quarter of the calories of butter.

Cook a healthy BBQ

Grilling can be your friend as it’s a great way to cook meat without additional fat (plus some of the fat that is present in the meat will sizzle away). But ditch the fatty sausages and burgers and try something healthier.

Top seasonal hacks

Marinate lean meat such as chicken or pork in oil, lemon and herbs to keep it succulent and tasty without the need for fattening sauces.

Make low-fat garlic mushrooms – take a large square of tinfoil, spray with low-cal cooking oil, add sliced mushrooms, seasoning and a clove of crushed garlic. Wrap all the ingredients up in a parcel and cook on the barbecue for about 15-20 minutes.

Grill fresh sardines – they’re inexpensive, vitamin and protein-rich and a great source of heart-healthy omega-3. Rub scaled and gutted sardines with lemon zest and chilli flakes before grilling for 3 – 4 minutes on each side.

Quench your thirst the healthy way

Warmer weather naturally forces us to drink more, which can, in turn, help curb your appetite and manage weight (as long as what you drink is low calorie). A study in the journal Obesity found a large glass of water before each meal helped dieters shed an extra 4lb over 12 weeks.

Top seasonal hacks

Add loads of ice to your water – you’ll burn a few extra calories bringing it up to body temperature!

Ditch milk for lemon – milky builder’s tea might be what you need in winter, but for summer, save a few calories by adding a slice of refreshing lemon instead.

Spritz wine and fruit juice with fizzy water to dilute calories and make a longer-lasting, thirst-quenching drink.

Salad days

Substituting more of the rice and pasta on your plate with summer salads helps dial down the carbs and calories – which could mean a trimmer waistline for you.

Top seasonal hacks

For a low calorie punchy dressing shake together balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard and Canderel Zero to taste.  The result is a zingy summer dressing.

Chilled new potatoes work well in a summery salad as long as you keep the dressing light (e.g. natural yogurt, squeeze of lemon and chives or dill). The resistant starch in cold potatoes (which forms when starches are cooked and cooled) can’t be broken down by the digestive system, thereby lowering the calories you absorb. Chilled potatoes are also slow releasing, which helps fill you up for longer.

Think fruit. A fruit salad made with different seasonal berry varieties, like strawberries, raspberries and blackberries makes a great summer dessert that’s low calorie, delicious and vitamin C-rich. Add them to savoury salads too; blueberries taste great added to a rocket salad with walnuts and a little crumbled blue cheese.