Summer Shape-up

Lose 5 pounds in 5 days? It's as easy as 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 ... 

May 29, 2013 at 11:37 AM ET

Video: If you’re looking to get into shape this summer, TODAY nutritionist Joy Bauer is here to help. She shares the five things you need to do every day as part of the 5,4,3,2,1 diet plan, including eating five cups of vegetables a day and drinking two cups of water before breakfast.


Five simple tips can add up to a weight loss of as much as five pounds a week, says TODAY nutritionist Joy Bauer.

“These are fun; they’re effective; and they’re delicious,” Bauer said as she counted down the five tips.

Bauer’s program is easy to remember because it links each tip number with the actual tip content. So, for example, tip five is to consume five cups of veggies each day.

5. Eat five cups of veggies every day.

“Vegetables are high volume; they’re low calorie; and they fill you up and not out,” Bauer said. “However you want to divvy these [five cups] up during the day is really up to you. I think the easiest thing is to have two cups with lunch, two cups with dinner and one cup as an afternoon snack. Or you could set your smart phone and every couple of hours: bing bing bing!”

While there might be value in varying the veggies, Bauer suggests you stick with ones you enjoy eating.

“If you only like carrots and green beans then you can repeat, repeat, repeat, and it works,” she said.

4. Dance to four of your favorite songs.

Pick four high intensity dance songs that you really like and during the day play them and “boogie it up.”

Natalie Morales helpfully demonstrated while wearing a special wrist band that calculates the calories she was burning.

“For every song, it’s about 40 calories,” Bauer said. That means 160 calories at the end of the day. “That’s pretty good.”

3. Have three protein rich meals.

“Protein revs your metabolism,” she said. “It suppresses appetite. And it keeps you feeling full.”

As examples, Bauer suggested an egg sandwich for breakfast, a tuna vegetable salad for lunch and turkey sausage served with veggies for dinner.

“To make [the egg sandwich] a little more interesting I spread a small amount of light cream cheese or part skim ricotta,” Bauer said.

2. Drink two glasses of water before each meal.

“It’s going to fill you up and you’re going to eat less,” Bauer said of what might be the simplest tip of all.

1.Once a day, indulge in one 150-calorie treat.

“It can be a glass of wine, a small froyo with some fresh fruit, four cups of light popcorn, two tablespoons of semi-sweet dark chocolate chips,” Bauer says.

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