If you’re trying to lose some extra pounds, you’ve most likely heard a lot of self-proclaimed experts saying things about moving more and eating less. These people make it sound simple, but this formula simply does not work well for a lot of people, and they start to think that they’ll never be able to lose weight. The fact is, though, that what you eat actually matters just as much as how much you eat. If you’re having trouble shedding pounds on a restrictive calorie diet, try swapping out some of the foods you regularly eat for these weight loss-friendly items.
According to recent studies, people who eat half of a grapefruit before breakfast, lunch, and dinner shed more weight than people on the same diets with the same exercise regimens but no grapefruits. Scientists suspect that this is due to a particular enzyme found in grapefruit, but that’s not the only reason to eat more grapefruit. This wonderful citrus fruit is also high in potassium, vitamin C, and folic acid, as well as pectin (a soluble fiber).
A cup of black beans will fill you up with 15 grams of protein to keep you feeling full and energized for longer than the same amount of carbohydrates. Not only that, but black beans also contain no saturated fat at all. They’re close to the perfect diet food, as they have a very low glycemic index to give you even energy throughout the day without any peaks or valleys for your blood sugar.
Avoid the pre-sweetened and flavored single-serving oatmeal options you see at the grocery store. Instead, opt for plain steel-cut oatmeal. It’s very high in fiber and long-burning complex carbs, and you can sweeten it with fresh fruit and add some substance and calcium with milk or a milk substitute. This is another food with a low glycemic index that will keep you feeling full all morning until it’s time for lunch.
If you tend to snack in the afternoons or midway through the mornings, grab some blueberries. A whole cup of blueberries has only 80 calories and packs in four grams of fiber. Plus, they’re delicious, and they’re rich in antioxidants, too. And, because they’re a source of natural sugar, they’ll satisfy your sweet tooth without ruining your diet. Blueberries are a great substitute for desserts.
Almonds are another source of good fats and protein, which will help you feel full and keep you going throughout the day. We’ve emphasized these so much because feeling hungry can actually act against you, as this is when your body produces cortisol, a stress hormone that promotes fat storage.
Finally, this is probably going to be the most exciting item on the list for a lot of people, but a glass of wine each day could help prevent weight gain. Resveratrol is an antioxidant found in grape skins (and, therefore, in wine) that actually stops fat storage. Thus, while wine won’t necessarily help you burn more fat, it could keep your body from storing new fat. Don’t overdo it, though, or you’ll have a headache and a few extra calories to show for your efforts.
Try adding one or more of these six healthy foods to your diet and see how much more weight you can lose. In addition to eating these foods, you should always opt for nutrient-dense foods instead of empty calories whenever possible, and cut down on sugar whenever you can. With these tips, you should have a much easier time shedding those pounds.