The Top 10 Slimming Foods
© 2014 Health Realizations, Inc. Update
You know how you can put on a couple of pounds by just looking at a cheeseburger and fries? Well, some foods have the opposite effect, helping you burn extra energy -- and keep weight off -- just by eating them.
Better still, these slimming foods do not all taste like grass or rice cakes; these are REAL, delicious and satisfying foods -- foods that you might even be craving right now. So go ahead and indulge. With food options like these it’s easy to eat right … and lose weight while you’re at it.
1. Sweet Potatoes
Swapping out your white potatoes for a sweet potato is a great move, waist-wise, as animal studies suggest that sweet potatoes help to stabilize your blood sugar levels and lower insulin resistance, which can help you fight fat.
Oranges are rich in flavones, and a study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that women who ate the most flavones had a lower increase in body fat over a 14-year period!
U.S. Department of Agriculture researchers have found that eating one-quarter to one teaspoon of cinnamon with food can boost your metabolism 20-fold, by making your fat cells more responsive to insulin. So sprinkle cinnamon in your apple cider, on your whole-grain toast or in a bowl of oatmeal … it’s also tasty in coffee and yogurt.
4. Hot Peppers
Adding red chili peppers to your food "could contribute to the dietary management of obesity," said Angelo Tremblay, a University Laval obesity nutrition professor.
That's because capsaicin, the active component in chili peppers, is thought to play a role in curbing appetite and boosting metabolic activity.
"Maybe you can have the same effect with curry, so go to your favorite Indian restaurant," Tremblay continued. However, researchers are still trying to determine if this effect, noted in animal studies, applies to humans.
Women who ate red meat lost more weight than women eating equal calories but little beef, a study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found. Not only is this protein great for your muscles, your body burns about 10 calories digesting every 100 calories of protein but just 4 calories for the equivalent amount of carbs. In other words, just the process of digesting protein burns a significantly greater amount of calories than does digesting other foods.
When it comes to red meat, choosing sources that have been raised in humane, natural ways --- which means being raised on pasture, or grass-fed -- is the healthier choice, according to many experts. Grass-fed beef has been found to contain less fat and more omega-3 fatty acids, conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) and other beneficial compounds compared to grain-fed beef.
A study from Penn State University found that eating an apple before a pasta dinner helped people eat fewer calories than those who had a different snack.
Part of the benefit likely comes from all the fiber they contain, but apples are also loaded with powerful antioxidants, including quercetin, catechin, phloridzin and chlorogenic acid, protect against breast and colon cancers, prevent kidney stones, and help to lower bad cholesterol while raising the good kind. Studies have also found that eating at least two apples a week reduces the risk of asthma and type 2 diabetes, and promotes lung health.
This ancient grain contains both fiber and protein, which means it will keep you satisfied longer than other grains like rice.
Haven’t heard of quinoa before? Pronounced "keen-wah," quinoa is actually a relative of leafy green veggies like Swiss chard. Native to South America, it was once considered the "gold of the Incas" because its high protein content gave warriors stamina.
Quinoa has a mild, nutty flavor and a creamy, slightly crunchy texture that's delicious.
Avocados have gotten a bad rap for their high fat content (29 grams per avocado), but it’s the fat they contain that will keep you satisfied and feeling full longer. Plus, avocado is an excellent source of the healthy monounsaturated fat oleic acid, which has been shown to lower cholesterol and protect against breast cancer.
9. Olive Oil
Olive oil is a healthy fat that increases satiety. Olives and monounsaturated fats, olives are rich in vitamin E, a fat-soluble antioxidant that neutralizes damaging free radicals,and polyphenols and flavonoids, which have anti-inflammatory properties.
These anti-inflammatory properties are beneficial for your waistline because chronic inflammation is linked to metabolic syndrome.
10. Mustard and Curry
Turmeric, which lends a characteristic yellow color to foods like mustard and curry, has been found to slow the growth of fat tissues, according to a study in the journal Endocrinology.