When it comes to weight loss, calories call the shots. You have probably read it time and time again and in so many different ways: fewer calories in, more calories out; you need to burn more calories than you consume; watch your calorie intake.
But not all calories are created equal, because not all foods are created equal. Different foods are digested and absorbed by the body in different ways; they also vary in how they affect our hunger and energy needs.
That’s why when it comes to a weight-loss diet, the focus should not just be on eating less; you should also know the right kinds of foods that will actually work with you and for you to reach your weight-loss goal.
What Are the Best Foods for Weight Loss?
Ready your palate for a sumptuous but healthy treat.
There have been many conflicting claims about the advantages and disadvantages of eggs on weight loss. But the most recent studies have established that whole eggs should be a regular part of a weight-loss diet.
Eggs are high in cholesterol and too much consumption can increase levels of bad cholesterol. But in moderation, you can benefit from the protein and fat content of whole eggs and their satiating effect.
Whole eggs are a great option for a low-calorie breakfast, replacing your usual bagels, for example. They are considered one of the healthiest foods, as loaded as they are with vitamins, minerals, high-quality protein, good fats, and other nutrients.
These vegetables are high in fiber and packed with nutrients. They include bok choy, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, garden cress, kale, and other leafy greens. They are high in fiber and low in calories, so they’re a great way to make meals more filling while staying within your daily calorie limit. They’re also a great source of antioxidants, minerals, and vitamins. Leafy greens that are rich in calcium have been shown to boost fat burning.
Beans and Legumes
Black beans, kidney beans, lentils, and peas among others, are also high in fiber and protein – the ideal combination for weight loss. Beans and legumes are a great substitute for meat and carbs, so they can effectively help you cut back on your calorie intake, while also making you feel full longer and providing you with important nutrients. They are also high in folate, potassium, iron, and magnesium.
We’re not talking of French fries, hash browns, or mashed potatoes, of course. We’re talking about boiled potatoes. White potatoes, in particular, are high in potassium and are highly filling. In fact, boiled potatoes scored highest of all foods tested on the Satiety Index. Their filling nature is a result of their high starch content. Including boiled potatoes in your meal will help you feel full more quickly, which will make it easier for you to eat smaller portions of other foods.
Loaded with healthy fats while being low in carbohydrates, avocadoes are among the healthiest and most unique fruits. More specifically, avocadoes are high in monounsaturated oleic acid, which is also found in olive oil. They are a great addition to your daily diet as they make a delicious complement to most meals. Because avocadoes have a high water and fiber content, they are very filling.
For a healthy snack, you can go nuts on nuts. They are loaded with healthy fats, fiber, and protein. Studies have shown that nuts are great for metabolic health and weight loss. However, nuts are high in calories, so they should be consumed in moderate amounts.
Small but extremely nutritious, chia seeds are a high-fiber, low-carb-friendly food. Chia seeds have the amazing ability to absorb up to 11-12 times their weight in water once in your stomach, which promotes satiety.
Whole grains, such as brown rice, oats, and quinoa, are high-fiber and low-carb. They are also a great source of plant protein and some contain soluble fibers called beta-glucans, which can increase satiety and support metabolic health.
Fatty fish are a great source of high-quality protein, healthy fats, iodine, and other important nutrients. Iodine is essential to the proper functioning of the thyroid which, in turn, helps keep the metabolism in optimum running condition.
Low in calories and still extremely satisfying, fatty fish like salmon, sardines, mackerel, trout, and herring can keep you full for many hours.
Lean meats are relatively low in fat. Red meat with the fat trimmed off, and skinless chicken and turkey can be a weight-loss diet staple. Lean meat is an excellent source of high-quality protein, which is an extremely filling nutrient. In fact, many effective weight-loss diets are based on a high-protein diet, which has been shown to boost calorie burning.
According to some studies, a 25% increase in protein intake can help you lose up to one pound per week. Lean meats are ideal for a moderate- to high-carb diet; low-carb diets, on the other hand, have room for moderate consumption of fatty meats.
The capsaicin in chili pepper, the active ingredient which is responsible for its heat, can reduce appetite and increase fat burning. In fact, capsaicin is a common ingredient in many commercial weight-loss supplements.
Full-fat yogurt that contains probiotic bacteria helps promote healthy gut function and, therefore, optimum metabolic health. Yogurt is a delicious and satisfying option for breakfast, snack, and/or dessert, so it’s easy enough to incorporate into your daily diet. While it may seem counterintuitive, full-fat yogurt is actually healthier than the low-fat variety because the latter usually contains high amounts of sugar.
Foods That Help With Weight Loss – Final Thoughts
A weight-loss diet does not have to mean starving and deprivation. There are numerous delicious and satisfying food options that are not only healthy, but can also boost your weight-loss efforts by reducing appetite or increasing fat-/calorie-burning.
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