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10 healthy foods for weight loss

By Suhasini Mudraganam
Last updated on: July 31, 2015 18:14 IST
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Discover a healthy way to keep your weight under control.

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Weight control is not always about eating less calories or starvation diets.

Eating the right foods at the right time is the easiest way to maintain weight.

Every food has a different effect on our body and not all calories are equal.

The ten foods discussed below can help you control your weight with their unique nutritional properties.

Eggs

Eating high protein foods like eggs for breakfast makes you feel full because of their high satiety index.

Feeling fuller for longer will lower the subsequent calorie intake.

Egg is a nutrient rich food with high quality proteins, healthy fats and is low in calories.

They are also an excellent source of leucine, an amino acid that acts as a catalyst in burning fat.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is most popular vinegar in the health communities.

Studies show that it aids in weight management by promoting satiety and lowering glucose and insulin levels.

Vinegar contains acetic acid that may interfere with the breakdown of starch and slows the digestion of carbohydrates.

A vinegar and olive oil dressing on your salad can help your body control blood sugars and keep the hunger in check.

Tea

Tea is more than just a hot beverage.

The bioactive compound in the tea leaves have many health benefits.

For weight management, green, white and Oolong tea are especially beneficial.

Research shows that the natural ingredients in tea like catechins and caffeine help increase metabolism and calorie expenditure.

Drink a cup of tea before your workout to boost your fat burning.

Squeeze some lemon juice with vitamin C to help body absorb more of the antioxidants and increase the metabolism further.

Probiotic foods

Probiotic foods like fresh curd or yoghurt contain live friendly bacteria that can optimise the gut health.

A healthy gut protects against inflammation and leptin resistance, which is the main hormone that drives weight gain.

Fibre from vegetables like onion, cucumber, greens, peppers are the food on which the probiotic feed and grow.

Probiotic foods are low in calories; contain minerals like calcium and phosphorus. They are easy to prepare and can be combined with any meal.

Addition of spices like green chills and cumin will further increase the metabolism and improve digestion.

Popcorn

Air-popped popcorn is a snack that can help you lose weight as it is low in calories, high in fibre and can replace other high calorie snacks.

Four cups of air-popped popcorn contains about 130 calories.

Popcorn is a wholegrain snack. Whole grains contain polyphenols-antioxidants that can help prevent heart trouble and other chronic diseases.

Avoid microwave popcorn that is loaded with fat and sodium. You can spice up your air-popped popcorn but go easy on butter.

Kidney beans

Kidney beans are one of the healthiest foods with several vitamins, minerals and bioactive compounds.

They contain healthy fibre, proteins and resistant starch that can make you feel full for a longer duration and reduce cravings.

White kidney beans contain alpha-amylase inhibitor that slows down the carbohydrate absorption, thereby promoting weight loss when taken along with a carbohydrate diet.

A study showed that eating beans four times per week for 2 months led to greater weight loss than a diet that excluded beans.

Pistachios

Pistachios are rich in protein, fibre and several other key vitamins and minerals.

They contain unsaturated fat, which is a good fat.

Having 20 pistachios will provide only 80 calories and less than one gram of saturated fat.

Eating them raw or dry roasted without salting them can make it a healthy snack.

Vegetable Juice

Drinking vegetable juices helps increase consumption of vegetables for good health and will also support weight management.

It is an easy way to get the recommended intake of five fruits and vegetable per day.

Vegetable juice helps reduce appetite, boost immune system with all the phytochemicals and increases energy levels with a balanced pH.

Brown Rice

Brown rice is a healthier, fibre-packed alternative to white rice.

It is a whole grain with nutrient rich germ, the energy providing endosperm and the fibre-rich bran layer.

One cup of serving contains about 3 grams of resistant starch, a healthy carbohydrate that boosts metabolism and burns fats.

Watermelon

The sweet and juicy watermelon can compensate for the desserts you might have to forgo to lose weight. It is low in fat and calories.

Two cups of watermelon provides less than 100k calories. It is a healthy, nutritious and a filling snack.

Watermelon is a low energy-dense food with high water and fibre content.

Neither water nor fibre contributes to calories, but both helps keep you full for a long period, further helping in weight management.

Lead image used for representational purposes only. Credit: lu_lu/Creative Commons

The author Suhasini Mudraganam is head nutritionist at TruWeight, a health and fitness start-up based out of Bangalore.

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