10 secret ways European women stay slim

European women are masters of drinking themselves svelte, and we can teach you how.
Copyright © 2014 Spanfeller Media Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Daily Meal® is a registered trademark of Spanfeller Media Group, Inc.  // Copyright © 2014 Spanfeller Media Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Daily Meal® is a registered trademark of Spanfeller Media Group, Inc.

American women have often admired the slim figures of European women. They have the stunning reputation of eating and drinking whatever they wish, while still managing to stay svelte. So the age-old question is: How do they do it?

The truth might be rather simple. European women drink in moderation and they tend to drink the good stuff. Their American counterparts fall into the trap of drinking sugary and calorie-laden drinks like soda, soft drinks and processed fruit juices, while European women drink caffeinated beverages, primarily drinks like tea for hydration and high-end coffees like Italian espresso or French press.

Overall lifestyle comes into play, as well. European women tend to practice good habits of walking from place to place and spending quality time resting and relaxing in spas and wellness centers. They also stick to pure, natural ingredients, and always focus on drinking in moderation, a smart philosophy to live by.

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Wine

Wine is practically a food group in Europe. But European women approach it rather smartly: drink more wine, eat less food. According to a study in the Archives of Internal Medicine, women who drink wine moderately tend to remain slim and weigh less than their teetotaling counterparts

More: Drinking red wine actually has many health benefits that you may not know about.

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Hot water with lemon

Many French women believe in having a cleansing glass of hot water with lemon when they first wake up in the morning. It’s believed to jump-start the digestive system and the lemon helps clean out the colon, which is helpful to maintaining a healthy weight. Carla Bruni’s trainer has even been quoted in the press about drinking hot water with lemon and actress Liz Hurley is another European advocate.

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Powerberry juice

The latest juice trend coming out of Switzerland is known as powerberry juice, a combination of freshly pressed super fruits sourced from all over the world. It’s made with red grape, lemon juice and strawberry purée from Italy, aronia juice from Poland, apple and black carrot juice from Switzerland, bilberry juice from Bulgaria and blackcurrant juice from Austria. The natural juice combination is said to stimulate the immune system and boost energy levels, allowing for more time to exercise.

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French-press coffee

Europeans love their coffee and strive to find the best around. They tend to love coffee made by a French press as it uses coarser grains that stay in contact with the brewing water, making a more concentrated cup of coffee. Research shows that caffeine may help increase focus and alertness. It also contains beneficial substances like polyphenols that are antioxidants.

More: Watch this video to learn how you can make perfect French-press coffee every time.

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Champagne

Try swapping a glass of wine for a flute of Champagne. The flute glass is much smaller compared to a wine glass, so you are inherently cutting down on calories. It is also a wonderful way to treat yourself, which goes a long way when it comes to overall health and happiness.

More: Champagne is expensive, but these are the most expensive wines in the world.

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Milk

The Dutch and other European women refuse to give up their milk, and many believe it is a healthy choice if you are attempting to lose weight or stay slim. Low-fat milk might be the milk of choice, as it is low in calories and is an excellent source of calcium, vitamin D and protein—all linked to weight loss.

More: You might be surprised to learn that skim milk is actually unhealthier than 2 percent or whole, but we can tell you why.

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Italian espresso

Millions of Italians rely on a morning espresso, as do many other Europeans. Because of the way it is made and its concentration, an espresso is thought to contain two to three times the number of healthy antioxidants of coffee made by other brewing methods, similar to a French-pressed brew. Another simple trick? They like to drink it black without artificial sugars and sweeteners.

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Tea

Tea is just as amazing as drinking water due to its hydration components, but it goes one step further by having a plethora of beneficial antioxidants. The European Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that the polyphenol antioxidants found in tea have proven to help prevent cell damage. Europeans often swap out a glass of water a few times daily and, depending on where you are in Europe, different types of tea like green and white are all the rage.

More: Not only can tea help you lose weight, it can also boost your mood.

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Water

This may seem intuitive, but European women drink water, and a lot of it. In America, we’re told to drink eight glasses of water a day. But many Europeans, particularly French women, add two more glasses on top of that suggested amount.

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