We all know that in order to lose weight, we need to cut out the junk food and fill our plates with nutrient-rich fruits and vegetables. But which ones? All fruits and vegetables provide important antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, but if weight loss is your goal, some will support your efforts more than others. The best weight-loss foods are those that help speed up your metabolism and promote proper cellular function throughout the body. An optimally functioning metabolism is one of the key prerequisites for sustainable weight loss.
The absolute best weight-loss foods
If you fill your plate each meal with non-starchy plant foods and clean protein, you’re bound to reach milestones and fulfill your health goals — especially if your exercise routine is sound. Whole foods are always best — those that have gone through no processing or minimal processing. Organic is optimal, so set your sights on the highest quality of foods available to you.
Every meal should include plant foods, protein, and a healthy fat, such as olive oil, fatty fish, avocado, and nuts. These foods increase your energy, which fuels your capacity to be productive throughout your day. These foods also support a balanced appetite. They don’t make you crave more; rather, they keep you full until your next meal. A balanced appetite is yet another essential part of achieving your weight-loss goals.
Best weight-loss superfoods
These weight-loss superfoods are the ones that will really support your efforts, because they’re the most nutrient dense. Eat these as often as possible to boost your overall health and reduce your risk of disease. Blueberries, avocados, leafy greens like kale and spinach, raw almonds and almond butter, grapefruit, pears, green tea, and broccoli should be staples on your shopping list.
Best weight loss foods for snacking
Ideally, snacking between meals should be kept to a minimum is weight loss is your goal. If you find yourself getting hungry between meals, drink a glass of water before eating anything, as thirst can often disguise itself as hunger. If you’re still hungry, choose healthy snacks that won’t sabotage your goals. These include nuts, seeds, nut butters, plain yogurt, hummus and crudites, and of course, fresh vegetables and fruits. Stay away from granola bars, which are often loaded with sugar and high in carbs with a high glycemic load. You’ll also want to limit other seemingly healthy foods, like trail mixes, which often have too much sugar in the form of dried fruits and other additives.
Best weight-loss fruits and veggies
The following are some of the best fruits and vegetables to add to your diet, and why they’re the ones that really fuel our weight-loss efforts!
Apples are an excellent weight-loss fruit due to their water and fiber content. An apple contains 85% water and 5% soluble fiber. This means they leave you full and satisfied. To avoid exposure to harmful chemicals, choose organic apples whenever possible.
Blueberries are also high in fiber, as well as antioxidants and potassium — all integral to weight loss. Flavonoids found in blueberries fight against inflammation, obesity and type 2 diabetes. A blueberry smoothie with almond milk and almond butter is a real antioxidant-packed treat that won’t derail your weight-loss goals.
Grapefruit contains loads of vitamin C, as well as phytochemicals that may help shed belly fat. Have one for breakfast and/or eat half a grapefruit with each meal.
A watermelon is 90% water. It’s also full of fiber, nutrients, and flavonoids. The flavonoids found in watermelon help increase energy levels, decrease inflammation, and fight weight gain.
Loaded with fiber and healthy fat, avocados support good digestion, which helps with weight loss. Avocados are unique because they’re a fruit with no sugar. This means they’re great for balancing blood glucose levels, which also supports weight loss and helps prevent obesity and type 2 diabetes. What’s more, avocados have lots of electrolytes — perfect for a post-workout snack. Try adding half an avocado to a smoothie to give it a creamy texture.
Broccoli help prevent cancer and helps the body shed excess weight with its anti-inflammatory compound, sulforaphane. Add broccoli to stir-frys, salads, and side dishes at least a few times a week.
Onions are a weight-loss staple because they contain quercetin, a compound that helps balance blood sugar levels and may even fight the formation of new fat cells. In addition, quercetin improves heart health, and you’ll need a healthy heart for all that exercise you’ll be doing!
Sweet potatoes are a great weight-loss food because they have lots of dietary fiber, which reduces cravings and makes you feel full longer. Its antioxidants also fight inflammation, which decreases risk for obesity.
Did you know that spinach is a protein-rich food? It’s true! The protein found in one cup of cooked spinach is equal to the amount in an egg. This is great news for those of you allergic to eggs. Add spinach to your weight-loss diet to build muscle, increase metabolism, and stave off cravings. You can easily add spinach to stir-frys, salads, and even smoothies.
Cauliflower is one those high-fiber veggies that contain very few carbs and lots of vitamin C. It’s a special weight-loss food for its omega-3 fatty acid content, which supports leptin production. Leptin is a hormone that plays an important role in reducing cravings and increasing metabolism, as it tells the brain when you’ve had enough to eat.
There you have it! These are hands down some of the best foods for weight loss. Have fun creating recipes from these ingredients, and you may discover a few new favorites!
Need help meeting your weight-loss goals? SmartFit Weight Loss offers personalized weight-loss plans to help you look and feel your best. Contact us today to schedule a no-cost consultation!