If you’re confused about what to eat to lose weight, you’re not alone! What are the “best foods for weight loss”?
Now, it’s not just down to specific foods that will magically melt away those pounds. However, if I told you there is a secret to weight loss and it’s down to 5 foods you should be eating…. that would make it far easier, right?!
The secret to weight loss is down to 5 foods you should be eating…that would make it far easier, right?!
With years of experience behind me, not only helping clients lose weight after years of frustration but also having devoured the evidence and research, I know that there are certain common foods, with incredible health benefits, that you should be focusing on. In other words, these foods should make an appearance each day, if not each meal!
These are foods that you commonly see and hear about and as such, are perhaps easy to overlook. However, prioritising these foods… that are right there in front of you, is the secret to weight loss!
The secret to weight loss; right there in front of you!
And there’s more…not only will these foods help you lose weight and keep it off, but you will also ensure you’re making the healthiest food choices for your overall health. In other words, ensuring great energy levels, good moods, balanced hormones, glowing skin…I could go on!
So, here’s the 5 best foods for weight loss that you shouldn’t overlook:
Dark Green Leafy Greens
It’s difficult to overestimate how important these dark leafy greens are to your weight loss efforts.
The good news is that this group of vegetables includes a huge variety, from simple lettuce leaves like romaine, little gem or rocket to spinach, kale, broccoli or cabbage. These foods are incredibly nutrient-dense, providing great iron, calcium, magnesium and B vitamins (and much more), all essential nutrients for energy production.
When it comes to weight loss…these healthy greens also high in fibre; exactly what you need to keep you fuller for longer whilst also ensuring good digestion and overall gut health.
With vegan or plant-based diets becoming more common, it’s easy to overlook the importance of protein foods in general. If you’re overlooking good quality lean protein, you’ll find it harder to lose weight or indeed to maintain or avoid gaining weight I’m a huge fan of protein.
When it comes to weight loss… Protein is key to weight loss; it’s a more complex nutrient that takes longer to break down during digestion, therefore keeping you fuller for longer. That way, you’re less likely to snack after a meal and you can go for longer periods in between meals without eating; another key factor in weight loss.
Yes, fats are essential for weight loss! It’s hard to overcome the legacy of being brought up in the era of “fat-free”, “0% fat” and “low-fat” and indeed, this notion is still being presented today. Years on, we now know that fat is not the enemy and more importantly, it is essential to overall health. However, the confusion arises when it comes to which type of fat you should be eating for weight loss and overall health.
The group of fats that are healthy are called “Essential” Fats. “Essential” in terms of nutrition, means that they must come from the diet. In other words, your body cannot make them and therefore you must eat them. If you don’t, your body will be deficient in these important fats.
When it comes to weight loss…Eating healthy fats like avocado, nuts, seeds, oils and even butter, will help you feel full and satiated. Let’s face it, a meal that has been cooked in a little butter or olive oil or a salad that has a sprinkle of nuts and a drizzle of oil is far tastier and more satiating as a result. No snacking required after and that’s key to weight loss.
Richly Coloured Fruits (and Vegetables)
It’s sometimes confusing to know how much fruit to eat in a day?
I recommend eating no more than 2-3 portions and that’s due to the high sugar content of fruit. However, that doesn’t mean fruit should be avoided; not at all, but choosing fruits that are brightly coloured will mean that they are rich in antioxidants and will provide the most nutritional benefits. For example, berries, darker skinned apples, nectarines and mango.
When it comes to weight loss…the fibre and water content of fruits will help you to feel full, whilst the sugar content will give you that “kick” you might be craving when energy levels are low.
Now, remember a portion is one piece of fruit or a handful; if you’re eating your fruit whole, this will feel reasonable. If you’re packing a smoothie with lots of fruit for added sweetness, you may find yourself exceeding the recommended 2-3 portions in just one sitting! The excess sugar will hinder your weight loss efforts.
Oats are an excellent source of soluble fibre; fibre your body needs to remove unwanted products that would otherwise leave you feeling tired and lethargic.
You may associate oats with a steaming bowl of porridge on a cold winter morning but there are so many more ways to include oats in your daily choices; whether that’s as a flour in a cake or in an energy ball or as a cold protein-rich Bircher muesli during the warmer summer months.
When it comes to weight loss…opting for healthier oat-based alternatives will provide more fibre to keep you satiated, whilst also allowing you to enjoy a “treat” food that is healthier and less sweet.