There’s no mystery to weight loss. It’s a simple formula: If you consume more calories than you burn, the extra energy gets stored as fat. On the flip side, to lose weight, you need to consume fewer calories while burning more energy through exercise.
Simple? Yes. Easy? Not so much. That’s why people keep getting sucked into fad diets or exercise trends that yield short-term results — or no results at all. But if you examine the no-fail weight loss behaviors that actually work, they share the same underlying premise: change the ratio of calories in versus calories out and stay active.
For long-term weight loss, the best approach is adopting healthy eating habits. A clean-eating lifestyle that emphasizes foods like fruits, veggies and whole grains and cuts back on processed foods and sweetened drinks can help you get your calorie balance in balance.
While specific foods aren’t magic pills, some foods have lesser-known powers that can impact your appetite — either suppressing it or helping you feel satiated longer — and boost your weight-loss progress. As you create your diet regimen, check out these five power foods that can aid in weight loss.
Five Foods That Help You Lose Weight
When eating healthy, most people know to focus on the basics: fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins. However, if you’re looking to take your diet to the next level, consider adding these five foods that promote weight loss to your grocery list.
- Benefit: Low calories, extra hydration
Foods: Watermelon, Spinach, Celery, Cucumbers
Watermelons are made up of mostly water (it’s even in the name). Extra helpings of watermelon or other foods that are mainly composed of water, such as spinach, celery, or cucumbers, are among the top go-to eats to lose weight. Not only do water-based foods help keep your calorie count low, but they also help ensure you get an extra boost of hydration.
- Benefit: Fat-burning metabolism boos
Foods: Cinnamon, Grapefruit
Adding cinnamon to your diet does more than change the flavor. Research shows cinnamon provides an extra fat-burning metabolism boost. Grapefruit has this same effect as well. The total impact depends on how your body absorbs the nutrients found in these foods and how many total calories you’re consuming. But adding these foods to your list can provide a flavorful boost toward weight-loss goals.
- Benefit: High Vitamin & Mineral Content, Increased Satiety
Foods: Almonds, Cashews, Walnuts
Nuts earn their way on to the list of foods that aid weight loss thanks to a combination of protein, healthy fats, and other good-for-you nutrients. In a study, a group of women who made 50 grams of almonds part of their weight-loss diets had better results in terms of reduced body mass index, cholesterol and blood sugar improvements compared with counterparts whose diet plans left out the almonds.
- Benefit: Improved Good Gut Bacteria, Weight Loss Aid
Foods: Oatmeal, Sweet Potatoes, Flaxseeds, Chickpeas
As you figure out what foods help promote weight loss, look for options that are high in soluble fiber. According to one study, for every 10-gram increase in daily soluble fiber intake, Visceral Adipose Tissue (belly fat) decreased by 3.7%. Foods like oatmeal, sweet potatoes, flaxseeds, and chickpeas fall into the soluble fiber category. Along with beans, lentils, and peas, chickpeas belong to a group of foods called “pulses.” While a pulse food’s soluble fiber works to slow down digestion, its protein releases hormones that make you feel full. As a result, research shows pulses can be some of the best foods to promote weight loss. These types of foods also help improve gut bacteria diversity which has been linked to better health and weight loss.
- Benefits: High in Antioxidants, Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Nutrient-Rich
Foods: Raspberries, Blackberries, Blueberries, Strawberries
With all their benefits – the ability to improve heart health, reduce LDL cholesterol (aka the “bad” kind that can lead to artery buildup), decrease inflammation, while still being low in calories but high in Vitamin C, Manganese, Vitamin K1, Copper, and Folate – what can’t berries do!? For a tasty, guilt-free snack with loads of health and weight loss benefits, add a handful of berries to your daily diet.
While none of these foods are end-all-be-all solutions, they offer great benefits and added assistance in reaching your weight loss goals.
Have questions about eating to promote weight loss or about nutrition in general? Sworkit’s certified fitness trainers are more than happy to answer them. In your Sworkit app’s main menu, navigate to the Help Center, then click on the “Ask a Trainer” link to get one-on-one advice from a real trainer.