Love it or hate it, but we are living in a world that is extremely health conscious. I think this health consciousness is a good thing. Book stores these days are full of guides to eating healthy, there are countless websites and blogs with weight loss advice and dieting tips, there is so much information, that weirdly it can be hard to find the simple info, of what burns fat, and what does not.
Perhaps you already exercise well, but due to pressures at home or at work, you find it difficult to go the extra length to getting fat burning foods. This is a habit you have to stop immediately if you want to improve your health. Some foods are clearly bad for us and you should make sure to stay away from these unhealthy foods and rather chose the fat burning alternatives we suggest here.
It is a myth that eating a super healthy diet can be challenging or is needlessly expensive In fact some of the foods listed below can be found easily and are cheap.
Mix these foods with a great exercise routine (if you’re burning more calories than you’re consuming, then you’re already losing weight), and you’re pretty much good to go!
What makes these particular foods good is that they help boost and speed up your metabolism, your body’s system of chemicals processes that keeps you going. As these processes require energy, they need to burn fat. So, a faster metabolism means the faster you burn fat. This makes any exercise you plan or will undertake far more effective.
Meat & Fish
I know what you’re thinking…meat is fatty by nature. This is true, and I’m certainly not going to say that the secret to a healthy diet is a steak per day (but wouldn’t that be something!) – but meat and fish can still be healthy if you choose the right one.
Salmon, Herring, Tuna, and Mackerel
These fish are super rich in Omega 3 fatty acids. You may well have come across articles talking about Omega 3 and its benefits, and, well, they’re not wrong. Omega 3 has been used to treat a variety of conditions including Depression and Asthma. But what is it doing here?
Omega 3 is also great at boosting your metabolism by reducing blood sugar levels and reducing inflammation. Also research has shown Omega 3 fatty acids are great at regulating your heart rate after exercise. These fish, in particular Salmon contains amounts of protein which help to build muscle.
A great meal which is high in Omega 3 and protein is Spiced Salmon with Sweet and Tangy Slaw. Its really quick and pretty easy to make too.
Chicken and Turkey
Now this is more like it. Chicken and Turkey work fantastically well. Both contain huge amounts of protein, which, as mentioned before help build muscle (and burn lots of calories while doing so).
Studies have shown that the glucose your body makes from protein takes twice as much effort for the body than it does when burning carbs into glucose. Also, they contain surprisingly low amounts of fat, so with Chicken and Turkey in your diet, you’ll be burning fat, without putting it on.
A healthy chicken recipe comes from Jamie Oliver: Firecracker Chicken Noodle Salad . It’s pretty quick to make and has a real kick to it.
Vegetables, Fruit, and Beans
While to us in the west, seaweed has long been a stable of Asian cuisine.
Seaweed contains huge amounts of Iodine which in itself is a useful micronutrient. But, when consumed it makes your thyroid produce hormones which helps to regulate your metabolism.
Though when eating seaweed, make sure not to consume too much as this can result in Iodine poisoning.
A nice quick seaweed salad is a great way to have seaweed. Seaweed flakes works well in a number of dishes.
Celery has an extremely low calorie count. Some have said that its calorie count is actually negative as it contains less calories than it takes to burn, this isn’t really accurate but it gives an impression about how low on calories celery is.
Celery is mostly made up of water (which is a fantastic metabolism booster, but more on that later) and cellulose which is undigested.
When consuming it (as with any food) it gets your digestive system working which in turns burns calories. So when you eat it, it can help fill you up without putting any strain at all on your calorie count.
Celery can be used as a snack by itself, as well as an ingredient in salads, soups, and stews. It can even be blended down and used in drinks.
Its true that avocados contain large amounts of fat, but the fats they do contain are actually considered to be healthy fats (sounds like an oxymoron but bare with me), because monounsaturated fats, which avocados have, help control the rate of metabolism.
For a guide to how to best use avocados…well, you can’t beat a good guacamole . Use it as a dip for a celery stick to show you’re not messing around.
Peppers and Chilies
Whilst the science behind it isn’t as simple as hot food burns fat, it does none the less work that way. Eating hot peppers can boost your metabolism quite rapidly, within hours after consuming. With Guacomole above, and Peppers here, it looks like Mexican food is the way to go…
Peppers and chilies are used in countless recipes. A good metabolism boosting one is Stir Fried Chicken and Broccoli with Noodles.
Fiber rich greens: Spinach, Kale, Brussels Sprouts and Peas
Looks like Popeye had a scientific basis… Fiber whilst very useful for the body and working with your digestion isn’t actually consumed and used by your body. As your body tries to figure out what to do with it, it burns calories, lowers cholesterol and blood glucose.
These greens are hugely versatile and are commonly used in salads …though Brussels Sprouts are famously avoided during the holidays.
Beans, Chickpeas and Lentils
Beans are rich in fiber and lean protein, which as we have explored are both vitally important when boosting your metabolism. So as a food type with large amounts of both, its use in boosting your metabolism is a no brainier.
But that’s not all, beans are also a good source of Iron which helps transport oxygen to your muscles, and by extension increasing their effectiveness and their ability to burn fat.
There’s a lot you can do with beans, for example you can try a healthy Sweet Potato Fritters with Smoky Pinto Beans dish.
I’ve discussed some of the advantages of fiber before, and apples are a great source of it. However this is not the only benefit for the metabolism apples have. Indeed research has shown that eating apples lowers the risk of gaining the metabolic syndrome.
Berries like Strawberries, Blueberries, and Blackberries
Like the greens and apples mentioned above, berries are a great source of fiber. A handful of berries are extremely high in fiber, it can easily account for about 10% of an individual’s daily fiber intake of 35 grams for men, and 25 for women.
Mix them up in a delicious smoothie for a great combo.
Grapefruits are sensational metabolism boosters. They help lower insulin levels which by extension hugely helps with weight loss. However, they are also contain fiber (which I’m sure you’re sick of hearing about) and vitamin C which helps keep you and your immune system healthy.
Grapefruits make a decent breakfast by themselves, otherwise when juiced you can consume its great benefits as a drink.
Low Fat Yogurt
Yogurt is a fantastic metabolism booster. It contains a great source of calcium which, as well as other things, helps regulate how fat is stored in your body.
Also, dairy products contain large amounts of protein. However I emphasize low or no fat yogurt and dairy products as full fat is well…full fat.
Liquids and Drinks
One of the most important metabolism boosting things to consume is good old fashioned H20. It has been found to increase your metabolic rate by 30%. Which, by itself makes it a great metabolism booster. But on top of this, water is a powerful appetite suppressor, so drinking water not only keeps you healthy, but also helps make you stop eating unnecessarily.
Tea, Green Tea, and Coffee (read: Caffeine)
Caffeine does have its share of problems, this is true. However if you are looking for a quick pick me up, a quick boost to your energy levels and metabolic rate, then it is a good choice. Especially if the alternative is a super sugary energy drink.
I recommend an espresso or a regular coffee as opposed to a cappuccino or latte as the fats in the milk may counteract any benefits.
Other types of foods
Eggs are amazing and hands down something you need if you want to boost your metabolism. Eggs feature Omega 3, Protein, Amino Acids, Vitamin B, and Iron. Also, on top of everything, they are low on calories. Meaning there are few things better.
Eggs are very versatile, but a good omelette is hard to beat.
Before you raid the candy shop for metabolism boosters, I should be more specific. Chocolate is a sweet, so generally less is more. However chocolate with a high amount of cacao (so, Dark Chocolate) can help your metabolism pretty well.
Cacao contains magnesium which helps maintain good glucose levels as well as increases the levels of the hormone adiponectin which helps burn fat.
Brown Rice, Whole Grain Cereal, and Quinoa
The above are all examples whole grains. It has been demonstrated that eating more whole grains can have a direct impact on your metabolic rate and weight loss. Studies have also shown that whole grains increase the calories consumed during the digestion process, and as a result, have a big impact on the body’s ability to burn fat.
There are numerous ways to include whole grains like brown rice into your diet. A Garlic Chicken Fried Brown Rice dish is one idea.
The above are a sample of the many fat burning, and metabolism boosting foods available. With an increase of them in your diet, and a good fitness plan, you’ll soon be in the shape and health you wish for, and deserve.
Featured photo credit: playbuzz.com via playbuzz.com