7 Best Healthy and Delicious Foods for Weight Loss
LET’S GO bad news away. Despite what the pop-up ads say, there is no “magic food” that will melt the pounds. Honestly, if brown bananas or coconut oil were enough, the human race would know by now.
“As much as we would like to believe, there is no such thing as snake oil for weight loss,” confirms Krista Maguire, RD, CSSD, nutrition manager at The Beachbody Company. “However, this is good news because who wants to eat a food? Fortunately, we can eat several healthy foods to reach our goal weight.
The trick is to focus on the nutrients in these foods.
First, proteins, which helps you feel satisfied because it takes longer to digest than carbohydrates. It also provides amino acids, the building blocks of lean body mass. This means you will preserve the muscles, even if you are eating with a calorie deficit. “It promotes a healthier body composition, tending towards less body fat and more lean muscle,” says Maguire.
Second, fiber promotes weight loss by adding bulk to foods so you feel full longer. It also slows the release of sugar into your bloodstream, which keeps your energy levels stable. Maguire adds, “You’re less likely to experience a sugar crash that can lead to those pesky snack attacks.”
Finally, probiotics are a recent player in the weight loss game, but they could be heading for MVP status by supporting the “good” bacteria in your gut. “Recent search suggests that gut health has an impact on weight management. said Maguire.
Look for a balance of these three nutrients, along with hydration to fill you up and healthy, tasty choices to keep you from feeling deprived. Here are seven foods to get you started.
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With almost 20 grams in a seven-ounce serving, low-fat Greek yogurt contains more protein than the regular kind. It’s also packed with gut-friendly probiotics. The thicker texture and milder flavor make it more appealing to yogurt beginners and it goes with absolutely any fruit. If that’s not sweet enough for you, minimize the added sugar by pouring in some honey instead of buying the pre-sweetened yogurt.
No, you don’t need to choke them raw, although a chopped cup contains about two grams of protein and fiber, all for a waistline of 27 calories. The bland taste of cauliflower is actually its greatest asset. Add it to all kinds of foods to help you feel full and boost your nutrition. Try the Cauliflower Rice, Cauliflower Pizza Crusts (skip the cheese ones), or Cauliflower Buffalo Wings. Or put it in your next smoothie. You won’t even know it’s there.
You can peel them and slice them raw into crispy, juicy strips, perfect for dipping. A cup of sliced raw jicama contains about 46 calories with almost six grams of fiber. Or bake and season them as a low-calorie substitute for french fries.
We all want a little sugar once in a while. By cutting said sugar with cinnamon at a ratio of about four to one, you’ll find that it takes a lot less to satisfy your sweet tooth. (You might even find that you don’t need the sugar at all.) Try it in tea, coffee, yogurt, or sprinkled on fruit. If you take casein protein before bed, a little cinnamon can brighten it up.
The fact that they are sweet and delicious should be enough. Raspberries, in addition to being loaded with all kinds of vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients, are also loaded with fiber. A cup of raw raspberries contains an impressive eight grams of fiber for only 64 calories. And this fiber is prebiotic, which means it feeds your good gut bacteria. (This is a good thing.)
Kale, spinach, chard… each leafy vegetable has its merits, so eat them all generously, but don’t neglect this classic. Romaine lettuce fills you up and hydrates you. Two shredded cups contain approximately one gram of protein and two grams of fiber, all for 16 small calories. If you’re too macho for salads, try quartering a head lengthwise and throwing it on the grill. Drizzle it with a little olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Filling, delicious and simple.
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