Does the very thought of trading in your sweater for a bathing suit have you wishing for six more weeks of winter so you can stay covered up? If you’d like to boost your weight-loss efforts, here are 4 foods that you should start eating today:  

  • Watermelon. According to a study in the Journal of Nutrition, an amino acid in watermelon increases metabolism and helps build lean muscle. Other foods with the same chemical include scallops, walnuts, and low-fat dairy products.

  • Another food that’ll help you slim down: Vinegar. In one study, overweight volunteers who got 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar a day lost more weight than those who didn’t. The researchers suspect the acetic acid in vinegar signals the body to produce more fat-burning compounds. And there’s an added bonus: Splashing vinegar on carb-heavy foods, like baked potatoes, prevents them from causing the insulin spikes that prompt your body to store calories as fat.

  • Next: Protein. Studies show that people who get 25-percent of their calories from protein lose weight twice as fast as people who don’t. That’s because eating protein reduces the amount of muscle you lose when you diet. So, you have more lean tissue available to burn fat-calories down the road. 

  • And the last get-slim food is good news for anyone who loves bread and pasta: Eat more whole grains. Carbohydrates get a bad rap because processed carbs increase insulin production, which can lead to weight gain. But studies show that the people who eat the most whole grains have lower insulin levels. In fact, swapping refined carbs for whole grains is so effective at tweaking your metabolism that experts say it can double your weight loss.