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Swimsuit season is like your parents coming to town: you’re never really ready for it and it just makes you feel bad about yourself. Surprise, we’re in it, bitch. But don’t worry, just because you snacked your way through the winter months doesn’t mean you have to suffer for it now. Much like your mom visiting you, you’re still going to want to eat out,  because warm weather and anxiety just make you want to spend money (or your mom’s money). Let’s face it, you’re not going to skip going out during the best party season of the year, so here’s a few ways to lose weight when you’re wining and dining this summer.

1. Look At The Menu In Advance

There’s nothing worse than intending to be healthy, only to get to the restaurant and realize everything on the menu is fried. Do a little research ahead of time and plan out your meal in advanceit’ll save you a lot of calories versus if you go in blind. 

2. Ask For A To Go Box BEFORE You Start Eating

And put half your entree in it before you even take a bite. That way you won’t be tempted to eat the whole thing, and as a bonus, you won’t have to cook the next day. It’s a win-win for everyone (but mostly you). Most restaurants serve larger portions than you would normally eat anyway, so this will just keep you from overeating. It’s like a time capsule for yourself, but full of food instead of a list of your third grade crushes.

3. Split A Salad And A Burger With A Friend

It’s the best of both worlds. Who says you can’t have your cake and eat it too? And by cake we mean burger. Don’t lie to yourself, you don’t want a salad. But if you split one with a friend you’ll feel more full than if you try to just eat half a burger…and you won’t hate yourself for eating a whole burger AND a complete side order of fries.

4. Ask For Your Sauce On The Side

If the waiter glares at you just tell him you’re saucy enough. (However, if you’re not a 65-year-old British man, odds are you’ll get even more weird looks.) But if you get your dressing/sauce/ranch/whatever on the side, you can control how much goes in your meal. You wouldn’t put product in your hair without putting it in your hand first, so why would you eat a salad without knowing how much vinaigrette is in there?

5. Ask For Low Sodium Soy Sauce

This works if you’re eating at a sushi restaurant. Or dim sum. Or anywhere you’re putting soy sauce on your food, obviously. They usually have a low sodium option and they’ll give it to you if you ask for it. Also, skip the miso soup, you might as well drink a cup of seawater it’s so full of sodium. You see what Ursula looks like? That’s not the swimsuit bod you want.

6. Eat Beforehand

Yeah, I know, it sounds psychotic to advise someone to eat BEFORE they eat, but hear me out. Schedule your dinner a little later and then have a SMALL healthy afternoon snack beforehand. You’ll be less likely to overeat or to sneak a second meal if you’re having dinner at 8pm instead of 6pm. Have a healthy snack or fruit in the afternoon so you don’t go crazy at dinner time. It’s like datingif you jump into a relationship too fast it probably won’t end well. Also, you’ll probably gain weight in both instances.

7. Instead Of A Fatty Dessert, Get Coffee Or Fruit

You can still steal a bite of your friend’s cheesecake, but you’ll give your stomach a break if you’re ending with something lighter. Coffee will suppress your appetite and you’ll forget you even wanted ice creamjust order decaf unless you want to be awake all night playing solitaire. Trust us, you don’t want a heavy sundae in your stomach when you’re about to down tequila and dance.

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