Think losing weight is all about foods you can’t eat? Well, nutritionists say, some foods actually turn up the heat on your metabolism, boosting the body’s ability to burn fat.
Pack your diet with these 10 foods, and the pounds will peel off faster — and with a lot less misery.
Foods That Burn Fat
Eggs are a nutritional powerhouse.
Although egg yolks used to be avoided due to their high cholesterol content, whole eggs have actually been shown to help protect heart health in those at increased risk of disease.
Additionally, eggs are a killer weight loss food.
Studies have shown that egg-based breakfasts reduce hunger and promote feelings of fullness for several hours in overweight and obese individuals.
In a controlled eight-week study in 21 men, those who ate three eggs for breakfast consumed 400 fewer calories per day and had a 16% greater reduction in body fat, compared to the group who ate a bagel breakfast.
Eggs are also a great source of high-quality protein, which increases metabolic rate by about 20–35% for several hours after eating, based on several studies.
In fact, one of the reasons eggs are so filling may be due to the boost in calorie burning that occurs during protein digestion.
Eating three eggs several times a week can help you burn fat while keeping you full and satisfied.
Eggs are a high-protein food that may help reduce hunger, increase fullness, boost fat burning and protect heart health.
Full of calcium, yogurt is an excellent belly fat buster. Any calcium in your diet will help you control how much body fat you have, but dairy is the most effective way to consume it, and both full and low-fat yogurt have plenty of calcium. A US study found that people on low-cal diets who included yogurt in their eating plans lost a whopping 81% more fat from their tums than those who didn’t.
Coffee is one of the most popular beverages worldwide.
It’s a great source of caffeine, which can enhance mood and improve mental and physical performance.
Moreover, it can help you burn fat.
In a small study including nine people, those who took caffeine an hour before exercise burned nearly twice as much fat and were able to exercise 17% longer than the non-caffeine group.
Research has shown that caffeine increases metabolic rate by an impressive 3–13%, depending on the amount consumed and individual response.
In one study, people took 100 mg of caffeine every two hours for 12 hours. Lean adults burned an average of 150 extra calories and formerly obese adults burned 79 extra calories during the study time period.
To get the fat-burning benefits of caffeine without the potential side effects, such as anxiousness or insomnia, aim for 100–400 mg per day. This is the amount found in about 1–4 cups of coffee, depending on its strength.
Coffee contains caffeine, which has been shown to improve mental and physical performance, in addition to boosting metabolism.
To keep the pounds at bay, eat an apple–or two–a day. Apples are high in pectin, which binds with water and limits the amount of fat your cells can absorb. Apples are also high in fiber, which makes you feel full; numerous studies have found that eating an apple a half hour to an hour before a meal has the result of cutting the calories of the meal. Recent research suggests eating apples has other benefits, too; the antioxidants in apples appear to prevent metabolic syndrome, the combination of high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and prediabetes that tends to accompany thickening around the waist.
5. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil is loaded with health benefits.
Adding coconut oil to your diet appears to increase “good” HDL cholesterol and decrease your triglycerides, in addition to helping you lose weight.
In one study, obese men who added 2 tablespoons of coconut oil per day to their usual diet lost an average of 1 inch (2.5 cm) from their waist without making any other diet changes or increasing their physical activity.
The fats in coconut oil are mostly MCTs, which have been credited with appetite-suppressing and fat-burning properties.
However, some studies suggest that its metabolism-boosting effects may decrease over time.
Unlike most oils, coconut oil remains stable at high temperatures, making it ideal for high-heat cooking.
Consuming up to 2 tablespoons of coconut oil daily may help maximize fat burning. Make sure to start with a teaspoon or so and gradually increase the amount to avoid any digestive discomfort.
Coconut oil is rich in MCTs, which may increase your metabolism, reduce appetite, promote fat loss and reduce heart disease risk factors.
The omega-3 essential fatty acids in salmon help prevent calories being stored as fat and may also increase cells’ production of heat, which means fat gets used up as fuel. Salmon also contains astaxanthin. The carotenoid that gives salmon its colour has the helpful effect of increasing the use of fat as an energy source and boosting fat-burning during exercise.
7. Green Tea
Green tea is an excellent beverage choice for good health.
Studies suggest that it may help reduce heart disease risk and protect against certain types of cancer
In addition to providing a moderate amount of caffeine, green tea is an excellent source of epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), an antioxidant that promotes fat burning and the loss of belly fat
In a study of 12 healthy men, fat burning during bicycling increased by 17% in those who took green tea extract, compared to those who took a placebo
On the other hand, some studies have found that green tea or green tea extract has little to no effect on metabolism or weight loss
Given the difference in study outcomes, green tea’s effects likely vary from person to person and may also depend on the amount consumed.
Drinking up to four cups of green tea daily may provide a number of health benefits, including potentially increasing the amount of calories you burn.
Green tea contains caffeine and EGCG, both of which may boost metabolism, promote weight loss, protect heart health and reduce the risk of cancer.
Wrongly tarred with the “carb” brush, oats are a whole grain, and are high in soluble fiber, so they cut cholesterol and blood fat. They’re also high on what nutritionists call the “satiety index,” meaning oats have tremendous power to make you feel full. Oats digest slowly, so they don’t raise your blood sugar, and they keep you feeling filled up well into the late morning. Oatmeal is, oddly enough, one of the best foods to help you sleep, as well. Old-fashioned steel-cut and rolled oats, with up to 5 grams of fiber per serving, are best, but even instant oatmeal has 3 to 4 grams of fiber per serving.
9. Pine Nuts
Rich in heart-healthy fatty acids, particularly the aptly named pinolenic acid, pine nuts have been found to boost levels of the so-called “satiety hormone,” ghrelin, which signals your brain that you’re full. When ghrelin levels are high, not only do you not feel hungry, you’re more able to resist cravings. According to studies done in Korea, a big producer of pine nuts, these same fatty acids have been shown to prevent the formation of belly fat, considered the most dangerous kind. In another report on foods that help you lose weight, I discuss almonds, which have many of the same benefits as pine nuts.
Apple cider vinegar is an ancient folk remedy with evidence-based health benefits.
It’s been credited with reducing appetite and lowering blood sugar and insulin levels in people with diabetes.
What’s more, vinegar’s main component, acetic acid, has been found to increase fat burning and reduce belly fat storage in several animal studies.
Although there isn’t much research on vinegar’s effect on fat loss in humans, the results from one study are pretty encouraging.
In this study, 144 obese men who added 2 tablespoons of vinegar to their usual diets every day for 12 weeks lost 3.7 pounds (1.7 kilograms) and experienced a 0.9% reduction in body fat.
Including apple cider vinegar in your diet may help you lose body fat. Start with 1 teaspoon per day diluted in water and gradually work up to 1–2 tablespoons per day to minimize potential digestive discomfort.
Apple cider vinegar may help suppress appetite, promote loss of belly fat and reduce blood sugar and insulin levels.
A bit on the side even the right spices, oils and vinegar can help you lose weight quicker…
- Vinegar – Keeps blood sugars stable and food in your stomach longer, plus it suppresses fat storage.
- Ginger – The heat in this spice helps your body burn more cals. Opt for ginger tea not ginger cake!
- Cinnamon – Balances sugar levels so less glucose ends up squirrelled away as fat.
- Olive oil – Monounsaturated fats fire up your body’s fat-burning mechanisms. Use in dressings.
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