If you dislike dieting, like most of us, and do not have time to go to the gym every other day, a few selected food choices could help move your scale in the right direction and would hardly have to break sweat.
Certain foods can help you slim down or help you maintain a healthy weight while simultaneously packing your body with nutrients that aid in lowering cholesterol and blood pressure, preventing heart disease, and controlling type 2 diabetes.
These superfoods help you lose weight by boosting your metabolism to burn fat and by curbing cravings for fatty foods. In addition, these will keep your energy level high.
In addition to including these superfoods in your diet, make sure you drink 8 to 10 glasses of water and do physical activities daily.
Here are the top 10 superfoods for weight loss.
1. Green Tea
Green tea has many health benefits rather than coffee or other beverages. It helps in maintaining the body weight to its perfection by burning body fat, which results in reduced waist circumference and weight loss, as pointed out by a 2009 study published in the International Journal of Obesity.
Green tea contains epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), an antioxidant that burns calories throughout the whole day.
A 2014 study at Pennsylvania State University reports that EGCG in green tea slows down weight gain by restricting fat absorption and increasing the body’s ability to burn fat. It even keeps your body hydrated, which can help reduce your appetite.
For optimum health benefits and to manage weight, drink two cups of freshly brewed tea or concentrated green tea everyday.
Blueberry, a powerful figure friendly superfood, should also be included in your diet. These small berries contain powerful antioxidants, which neutralize free radicals.
They also contain ample amounts of soluble fiber and water that produce a feeling of fullness so that you will stay satisfied for a longer duration between meals while improving digestion.
The manganese in it metabolizes proteins, carbohydrates, and fats. In addition, blueberries are free from fat, cholesterol, or sodium.
A 2009 University of Michigan Cardiovascular Center study suggests that blueberries help in eliminating belly fat. The polyphenols in blueberries reduce belly fat and even reduce the risk factors for metabolic syndrome.
Try to eat about a cup of blueberries every day. You can eat them as a healthy snack or include them in fruit salad, smoothie, or yogurt.
Flaxseeds are great for losing weight fast, thanks to their healthy fat and fiber content.
Dietary fiber is an important weight-loss nutrient, and flaxseed has high fiber content. A 2012 study published in the Appetite journal concludes that a drink containing 2.5 g of flaxseed fiber helps to suppress appetite.
This makes you feel full in a short time, and this feeling (satiety) lasts longer.
Flaxseeds contains a high amount of omega-3 fatty acids (omega-3s) that help in weight loss. A 2013 study published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition reports that including a sufficient amount of omega-3s in diet helps prevent obesity.
A 2015 study published in the Nutrition journal suggests that flaxseed when added to a weight loss diet helps reduce inflammation markers such as CRP and TNF-a.
Flaxseed can even improve the lipid and metabolic profiles and reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.
In your diet, add 1 to 2 tablespoons of ground flaxseed. You can sprinkle it in your smoothies, juice, yogurt, cereals, salads, or soups. However, when adding flaxseed to your diet, be sure to drink enough water throughout the day.
Almond is another rich superfood that helps you slim down. Fiber, protein, and monounsaturated fat contents of almonds help in losing weight. The fiber in almonds make you feel full and nourished so that you avoid unhealthy foods.
According to a 2013 study published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, people who ate 1.5 ounces of almonds daily for a period of 4 weeks did not gain significant weight.
The vitamin B and zinc in almonds also help stop sugar cravings.
Eat a handful of dry roasted or soaked almonds, in place of your regular snack. As almonds contain calories, try not to eat more than 1 ounce, or 23 almonds. You can also drink unsweetened almond milk to lose weight.
A 2006 study published in the Journal of Medicinal Food reports that eating half of a fresh grapefruit before meals can result in significant weight loss.
Its fat-burning ability comes from its fat-burning enzymes. Even insulin resistance can be improved with fresh grapefruit. Insulin is a fat-storage hormone that can affect your weight.
In 2014, researchers at the University of California-Berkeley found positive effect of grapefruit juice in curbing weight gain in a high-fat diet.
The study was done on 2 groups of mice. One group was fed a high-fat diet and grapefruit juice. The other group was also fed a high-fat diet but with plain water instead of grapefruit juice.
The researchers found that mice who were fed grapefruit juice gained 18 percent less weight compared the the other group.
As a grapefruit contains 90% water, it can fill you up; so you eat less. It is even packed with immune-boosting vitamins and antioxidants, and is also low in calories.
Try eating half a grapefruit before breakfast and the other half before lunch to enhance your body’s fat-burning performance.
Note: Grapefruit may not be suitable for people on certain medications such as statins and antihistamines.
An oatmeal breakfast is great for those who are trying to lose weight or maintain a healthy body.
Oatmeal contains beta glucan, a kind of soluble fiber that helps reduce abnormal levels of fat in the blood. It induces greater feelings of fullness and a reduction in hunger.
A 2013 study published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition suggests that oatmeal provides more fiber than other ready-to-eat breakfast cereals.
Another study published in Plant Foods for Human Nutrition in the same year reports that regular intake of oats can help reduce body weight and waist-to hip ratio.
Eat oatmeal for breakfast. Cook it with skim milk and add healthy toppings such as almonds or berries to keep the calorie content low.
Orange is an incredible superfood for weight loss. High fiber and vitamin C contents of the fruit promote weight loss.
A 2005 study published in the journal of the American College of Nutrition notes that people who eat more vitamin C–rich foods have lower body mass index as compared with those who consume less vitamin C. Vitamin C also promotes the production of carnitine in the body, which reduces fat.
Also, the fiber content of orange makes people less likely to gain weight.
A 2009 study published in the Nutrition journal reports that high-fiber foods take longer to chew and slow down the emptying of your stomach. This means fiber keeps you full for longer duration.
This low-calorie fat-free fruit is also a good source of nutrients required for a healthy body. Start your day with an orange and also drink a glass of fresh orange juice daily. However, avoid packaged orange juice as it contains sweeteners and preservatives.
Cold-water fish like salmon also boosts your body’s metabolism and helps burn fat faster.
Salmon is packed with good fats, which are conducive to weight loss. Also, the good quality protein in salmon also supports weight loss.
Protein requires more energy from the body to process, thus providing the fat-burning benefits. In addition, lean sources of protein like salmon help you feel full for longer.
A 2011 study published in the journal Metabolism analyzed the differential effects of various fish proteins in altering body weight, adiposity, inflammatory status, and insulin sensitivity in high fat–fed rats and found salmon to be the most effective one.
Salmon also contains vitamin D, which is deficient in many people.
Try to eat two or three servings of salmon per week. You can try grilled or baked salmon dishes.
Although avocados are high in fat, they are an excellent addition to any weight loss program. The monounsaturated fats in avocados help satisfy hunger and make you feel.
Plus, avocados are rich in L-carnitine, an amino acid used in metabolizing fat.
They also have good amounts of soluble and insoluble fiber, which are effective for weight loss.
A 2014 study published in the Nutrition journal reports adding one-half of a fresh avocado to a lunch made overweight people feel more satisfied by 26% and reduced their desire to eat following a meal by 40% over a 3-hour period, and by 28% over a 5-hour period.
A 2013 study published in Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition highlights the composition and potential health effects of ‘Hass avocados’, the most common commercial avocado cultivars in the world.
The study notes that the consumption of avocados with salads helps in weight management, ideal cardiovascular health, and blood glucose control.
Eat half an avocado every day. The rich texture and flavor of avocado make it a perfect addition to any dip and spread, or when chopped into salads. However, do not overindulge in this rich, creamy fruit.
10. Dark Chocolate
Many chocolates contribute to weight gain. But dark chocolate can actually help you lose weight. Dark chocolate with a high quantity of cocoa is rich in antioxidants that help you slim down. It even revives your metabolism to burn more fat.
A 2014 study published in Phytotherapy Research highlights the possible implication of dark chocolate in the modulation of obesity and body weight.
Dark chocolate reduces the expression of genes involved in fatty acid synthesis, thus reducing the digestion and absorption of fats and carbohydrates, and increasing satiety.
Earlier, a 2010 study published in the journal Regulatory Peptides reported that people who either ate or smelled the chocolate that consisted of 85 percent of cocoa showed a drastic reduction in ghrelin and satiated appetites. The hormone ghrelin is produced in the body to increase your appetite.
In addition, the magnesium content of dark chocolate keeps body pain at bay, which makes exercising far more appealing.
It can even help lower blood pressure, increase blood circulation, and prevent arteriosclerosis, all side effects of obesity.
However, dark chocolate is a calorie dense food. Hence, you need to enjoy it in moderation. If you are trying to lose weight, eat an ounce of dark chocolate three times a week, with the composition of cocoa between 70 and 85%.