Superfoods build bones, prevent chronic diseases, improve your eyesight, and even keep your mind sharp. But did you know new evidence suggests these foods can also help you get - and stay - slim?
If you’re trying to lose weight, you’re probably counting calories, reducing your fat intake and watching your portion sizes. What you eat however, is as important as how much you eat. Filling up on low-calorie processed snacks and other prepared foods might keep you within your calorie guidelines for the day, but your body and your metabolism struggle to function properly fueled by nutrient-poor foods. These 10 super weight loss foods can help you reach your goals and give your body the quality fuel it needs.
The chemical properties of grapefruit are believed to help reduce insulin levels in the body. The smaller the spike in your blood sugar after eating, the more efficiently your body uses the food you’ve eaten for energy, thus reducing the unused amount that’s then stored in the body as fat.
Additionally, the pulp found in grapefruit provides your body with fiber, while the high water content helps keep your body hydrated to support your metabolism. The benefits don’t stop there. Grapefruit is also high in potassium and vitamin C and pink varieties contain lycopene, the heart healthy antioxidant (cross link) best known for giving tomatoes their color. Try adding half a grapefruit to your breakfast or making it your late-morning snack to get your metabolism fired up for the day.
Although they’re high in calories, small amounts of raw or dry-roasted nuts are low in sugar, good sources of heart-healthy monounsaturated fats, and contain protein, fiber and a variety of vitamins and minerals. Almonds are best known for vitamin E and omega-3 essential fatty acids (cross link), while almonds are favored for being a natural source of selenium.
The fat and fiber in a serving of nuts helps fill you up and satisfy your taste buds, which makes them one of the best options for an afternoon snack when your energy may be flagging. Aim to work one to two servings of nuts into your day, but stay mindful of your overall fat and calorie intake. Toss a handful of nuts into oatmeal, salads or eat them on their own with a piece of fruit.
What’s not to like about dark, leafy greens? Broccoli, kale, spinach, collard and other greens, and swiss chard are rich in iron and calcium and contain a host of antioxidants like vitamins A, B9 (folate) and C. Not only that, but dark leafy greens are high in fiber and low in calories, so you can eat them until you feel full and not blow your calories for the day. Steam your greens or sauté them with garlic and a tablespoon of olive oil and serve them as a side dish, eat them raw in salads or add them to soups.
Dietitians often refer to plain yogurt as the perfect food, and for good reason: With its trifecta of carbs, protein and fat, it can stave off hunger by keeping blood sugar levels steady.
Eat more “Use lowfat plain yogurt instead of mayonnaise in chicken or potato salad, or top a baked potato with a bit of yogurt and a squeeze of lemon juice,” Krieger says. You’ll save 4.7 grams of fat per tablespoon. Look for Greek yogurt, which has more protein than other versions
Orange vegetables like carrots, sweet potatoes, squash and pumpkin are super foods that fill you up while nourishing your body. Full of vitamin A, potassium and carotenoids, each of these super foods is also high in fiber.
Try baking a sweet potato in the oven and eating it, skin and all. Not only does the baking bring out its inherent sweetness, but you may find that sweetness eliminates your desire to add butter, salt or sour cream.
Carotenoids work to stabilize blood sugar levels, which can help promote weight loss, making sweet potatoes a perfect addition to your lunch or dinner. Spritz sweet potato wedges or carrots with olive oil, season to taste and roast at high heat for a colorful side dish that’s good for you and great for your waist line.