Seems unbelievable that eating food can help you to lose weight, right? Well, just as there are foods that will make you gain weight, there are foods that can help with weight loss, too.
What you’re looking for are foods that are high in fibre or protein. Calcium-rich foods can also aid weight loss, as research has shown that calcium helps the body to burn fat. Here are five examples of foods that boost weight loss.
1. Apples – It’s the fibre that does it. Eat apples whole, including the skin, rather than drinking them juiced. If you don’t like apples, or wish to rotate your fruit, pears offer the same weight loss benefits.
2. Oats – Another fibre-rich food, oats when eaten for breakfast can carry you to lunchtime, without you needing a midmorning snack. Opt for less-processed versions, such as steel cut or rolled oats, which are more filling. Oats do take time to cook, but soaking them overnight will help to reduce the cooking time and help you do digest them better.
3. Lentils – These little beauties offer you both fibre and protein. Other benefits of lentils are that they do not need soaking as dried beans do, take less time to cook and are easier to digest. Enjoy them with rice for ‘make’ a complete protein (e.g. dhal and rice), or add them to stews, soups, pilafs and salads.
4. Nuts – While tiny, nuts offer a big bang of nutrients – healthy fats, protein and fibre – to keep you satisfied. It’s good to mix up the variety, as different nuts offer you different benefits. For example, walnuts are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, while pistachios have fewer calories.
To get the health benefits, stick to plain, raw nuts, and keep portion sizes small. If you can, buy nuts still encased in their shell. This means that cracking them open will slow you down, which will also help stop you from overeating. Nuts are also great for adding protein to many dishes and baked goods.
5. Cottage cheese – This low-fat dairy food offers you a good dose of protein and calcium. The calcium will help you to burn fat, while the protein will help you to maintain and build muscle. Interestingly, cottage cheese has more protein than yoghurt, and doesn’t usually have additives such as sugars. Enjoy cottage cheese with sliced fruit or vegetables, or serve it atop meals such as soup, salads, sourdough toast and pasta (instead of parmesan cheese).
While many of these foods are usually enjoyed as snacks, they can also be eaten just before, or with a main meal, to help you reduce your meal’s portion size. This is bound to help you lose weight.
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