Losing weight and getting healthy can be a tough challenge. Eating right might not be enough to lose weight. Quantity and quality of food will make a huge difference in your overall health. Science is just learning about the hidden health effects of foods, such as the benefits of antioxidants. Fresh, unprocessed foods are filled with amazing vitamins and minerals that can have a lasting effect on your body. Foods with the most positive effects are called super foods.
Here are 15 amazing super foods that can charge up your metabolism and make weight loss even easier.
While avocado may be high in calories, it is full of healthy monounsaturated fats. This healthy vegetable fat is a great alternative to saturated margarines. Use avocado as a spread on sandwiches or chopped into salads to boost the flavor and get the benefits of mannoheptulose. This sugar inhibits the release of insulin, so it’s a great food for diabetics and those trying to lose weight.
This sweet leafy green is most popular in salads and cooked as a side dish. Spinach is high in chlorophyll, which can be found in all green colored vegetables. Chlorophyll is being studied for its restorative effects on your DNA and its detoxification properties. It can help reduce heavy metal buildups in your blood, and it helps carry oxygen through your body which is great when you’re trying to work out and get healthy. This delicious leafy green vegetable is best eaten raw, as cooking can damage the chlorophyll. Enjoying just 1/2 cup of it daily can give you over 300 milligrams of chlorophyllin.
These tiny tart berries are the perfect super food. Blueberries contain polyphenols, which can induce lipolysis. This process breaks down fat cells and can stop new ones from forming. Blueberries are low in sugar when compared with other fruit, which keeps your insulin stable. If fresh blueberries are too expensive, look for frozen bags of them in your grocers freezer section. Freezing the fruit will not damage the polyphenols. Enjoy frozen blueberries in smoothies or in your breakfast cereal.
Cinnamon is not only delicious, it’s great for you! This spice can help lower bad cholesterol while raising good cholesterol. It has a positive effect on your blood sugar, making it particularly beneficial to diabetics. Cinnamon is high in polyphenols, which can act like insulin in your body. High blood sugar levels can lead to weight gain, so controlling your sugar consumption is important for everyone. Enjoy cinnamon by sprinkling it over cut fruit or in your oatmeal.
This delicious food is often mistaken for a grain due to its texture and taste. Quinoa is actually a seed, and this super food is high in protein and lower in carbohydrates. The protein it contains is called a “complete protein”. It includes all eight of the essential amino acids that we need for muscle health. Replace any cereal grain with this seed for a delicious and filling alternative to high carbohydrate varieties. Quinoa has a mild nutty flavor and a fluffy couscous texture.
Nuts are high in fat and calories, but they have been found to be weight loss champions. Their combination of high fiber and natural fats can reduce your appetite and keep you full for longer. A small amount goes a long way, so make sure you measure out your portion. It can be easy to over eat on nuts, so restriction is key. Long term studies have shown that moderate consumption of nuts can lead to lasting weight loss.
The humble egg is actually an amazing super food. They are high in choline, which has been shown to help prevent fat absorption. Eggs are also low in calories and high in protein. Eating high protein foods can keep you full for longer than carbohydrates. Start your day off right by eating eggs for breakfast. The yolk can be controversial because it’s high in cholesterol, but the largest studies on eggs have found that eating egg yolks can actually reduce bad cholesterol.
8. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil contains an amazing compound called lauric acid. It converts in your body to an antibacterial compound that can help prevent sickness. Coconut oil is a medium chain fatty acid, which are quickly metabolized by the liver and won’t end up as fat deposits. Some believe that coconut oil can help speed up your metabolism, helping burn more fat. Enjoy coconut oil as an alternative to cooking sprays when pan frying food.
Lentils are a delicious way to increase your dietary fiber. They are most commonly found in dried bags, which can be very affordable. Some studies have found regular consumption of lentils can prevent polyps. These growths line your intestines and they can become cancerous over time. Lentils are also high in resistant starch. This fat burning carbohydrate can rev up your metabolism for over 24 hours. Enjoy lentils cold in salads or warm in soups.
This super food is amazingly high in antioxidants. Drinking pomegranate juice has been shown to break down abdominal fat. Eating pomegranate seeds can have an ever better effect because they are high in fiber. Enjoy pomegranate seeds in a fresh salad to bring a bright acidity and new texture. Pomegranate juice is also a great addition to your smoothies and mixed drinks.
Raspberries contain an amazing phytochemical called ellagic acid. It acts as an antioxidant, and has been shown to have anti-cancer properties. It can also reduce the effects of estrogen, which is great benefit for people with excess fat. Fat can raise the levels of estrogen in your body, throwing your hormones into chaos. Balancing your hormones can help you lose weight and keep it off.
4. Sweet Potatoes
Orange vegetables are high in phytochemicals which gives them their brilliant color. Sweet potatoes have better nutrition than conventional white potatoes, but retain the same texture. They are high in fiber, vitamin C, and vitamin B6. A great weight loss tip is to replace your white potatoes with these sweet potatoes to get more minerals and vitamins. They have a stronger flavor, and you will get amazing health benefits while still having your starchy carbohydrates.
3. Dark Chocolate
Dark chocolate is high in antioxidants, which has been shown to reduce the risk of heart disease. All cocoa has these benefits, but dark chocolate is particularly good for you. Unlike milk chocolate, dark has less sugar and lower calories. You can even find 100% chocolate, which has no added sugar. It has a strong flavor, but when savored slowly, it can be just as satisfying as a conventional chocolate bar.
Salmon is high in omega-3 fatty acids, which have been shown to prevent heart disease. It is naturally low in calories and packed with protein, so it makes a great entree. The bright pink color of the flesh is a sign of the minerals in the meat. Other seafood high in omega-3s are tuna, trout, shark, sardines, and oysters. These delicious seafood products are a great food to eat when trying to lose weight. They are filling and will keep you healthy.
1. Green Tea
Green tea is a renowned super food. It contains two different phytochemical antioxidants: anthocyanin and pro anthocyanin. These antioxidants can help block bad cholesterol and increase good cholesterol. It has also been shown to boost your metabolism, increasing the rate you burn calories. Matcha has the most nutrients when compared with other types of green tea. It is unfermented and can be found ground into a powder. Enjoy this healthy drink any time of the day.
By: Catherine Roberts on Tuesday, March 12th, 2013