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Last Updated on November 27, 2020

15 Most Effective and Nutritious Healthy Foods to Lose Weight

15 Most Effective and Nutritious Healthy Foods to Lose Weight

The food we eat has a clear influence on our health and, of course, on our weight. If we feed our bodies with junk, we can only expect weight gain as a result. On the other hand, by eating healthy foods to lose weight, we can keep our metabolism active and get rid of excess pounds.

In this article, you will discover some of the most effective and nutritious healthy foods. By integrating these into your daily diet, you will be able to lose weight and return to a healthy figure.

1. Eggs

For a long time, we were told that eggs can endanger our cholesterol levels and that we should consume them in moderation. Today, Today, modern research has found that eggs contain healthy fats and are recommended for those who want to lose weight[1].

The big benefit that eggs have to offer is that they guarantee a prolonged satiety sensation, without containing too many calories. When planning the best diet plan, be sure to add them to the list. They can be prepared in a wide range of ways, being dense in nutrients and rich in taste.

2. Avocados

Avocados are not only delicious, but they contain a lot of beneficial substances, especially healthy fats. For someone who is interested in losing weight, avocados should be part of your diet. Did you know that these fruits are rich in oleic acid, which is also found in olive oil?

Avocados also contain grams of fiber and water, which make them ideal for those looking to cut back a few pounds. They can be easily integrated into a variety of meals, including salads and spreads.

Moreover, they facilitate the absorption of antioxidants derived from veggies, and they are rich in potassium[2].

3. Fatty Fish

If you are looking to lose weight, fatty fish can be quite helpful. As an excellent source of healthy fats, it can satisfy your appetite and prevent you from overeating.

It doesn’t contain too many calories, so you can consume it without worrying about gaining weight.

One of the most recommended choices is salmon, but you can also consume tuna, mackerel, herring, or sardines. All of these options are rich in nutrients, including iodine, which is essential for the healthy functioning of the thyroid gland (thyroid dysfunctions are almost always associated with weight gain).

You can see some of the types of fish with high omega-3 content below[3]:

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9 Fatty Fish High In Omega-3 (and Low In Mercury) | Fatty fish, Nutrition infographic, Healthy fish

    4. Leafy Greens

    When it comes to healthy foods for weight loss, leafy greens stand at the top of the list[4]. This is because they are low in calories and high in fiber, allowing one to feel fuller for a longer period of time.

    Leafy greens do not contain too many carbs, which is another reason why they should be considered.

    It is a known fact that leafy greens are rich in nutrients, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

    They contain calcium, which is essential for the fat-burning process. Moreover, they can be easily integrated into various meals in generous portions.

    5. Lean Meat

    Just because you are trying to lose weight does not mean you should give up meat altogether.

    Lean meat is an excellent source of healthy proteins and that it does not necessarily increase the risk of heart disease or diabetes, especially if you buy it from local farms where animals are raised humanely and grass-fed.

    One recent study pointed out: “Health is enhanced when livestock forage on phytochemically rich landscapes, is reduced when livestock forage on simple mixture or monoculture pastures or consume high-grain rations in feedlots, and is greatly reduced for people who eat highly processed diets”[5].

    Basically, the idea is to choose meat of high quality, paying attention to the way you prepare it. Also buy local any chance you get.

    Lean meat is high in grams of protein, which contribute to the fat-burning process. It is also worth mentioning that the consumption of meat reduces the risk of late-night cravings.

    6. Nut Butters

    Speaking about sources of proteins, nut butters are definitely on the “yes” list. They contain high-quality protein and fiber, representing the perfect choice for a satisfying snack.

    From another perspective, it has been established that nut butters contain specific amino acids, such as L-arginine. This can improve the blood and lymph circulation, reducing the risk of water retention[6]. Thus, you can finally get rid of that water weight and look fantastic again.

    Not to mention, nut butters are quite delicious, especially when paired with fruits.

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    7. Pumpkin

    When the fall season comes around, pumpkins are everywhere

    But did you know that pumpkins contain a lot of fiber? They are also rich in potassium, defeating the banana in this competition.

    The regular consumption of pumpkin has been associated with a reduced risk of obesity. Pumpkin contains antioxidants as well, which can provide protection against cell damage.

    Imagine a healthy dessert prepared with pumpkin puree, cinnamon, yoghurt, and chopped nuts. Or a delicious slice of baked pumpkin. There is truly nothing better to be enjoyed without feeling guilty about the intake of calories.

    8. Potatoes

    Baked potatoes can help those who are interested in quick weight loss. They contain plenty of potassium, preventing bloating and water retention (sodium-related).

    When you cook potatoes in this manner, you are also getting a lot of fiber, which means that you will feel fuller for longer.

    Always remember that potatoes are dense in nutrients, but their caloric intake changes when cooked differently. French fries are the worst, rich in calories and high in unhealthy fats (increased risk of weight gain and heart disease).

    9. Seeds

    No one would think about seeds as being worth introducing in a diet plan. However, these are definitely on the list of healthy foods to lose weight. They are rich in healthy fats and minerals, including zinc.

    You can consume sunflower, pumpkin, flax, quinoa, chia, and sesame seeds. Take into account that some of these seeds, such as quinoa and chia, require hydration.

    Another piece of good news is that you can integrate these seeds into different dishes, like salads or mixed into rice dishes.

    10. Fermented Foods

    Fermented foods are part of various cultures; for example, Koreans eat kimchi and other fermented foods as part of their daily diet.

    If you are looking to get back to a healthy figure, you might benefit tremendously from such foods. Not to mention, they have the most amazing flavors to offer.

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    You can consume yogurt, kefir, tempeh, miso, or sauerkraut, as each of these fermented foods is rich in probiotics. These regulate the gut flora, which in turn works to keep you healthy and lean[7].

    When your gut flora is healthy, your metabolism is active, and bloating is not a problem.

    11. Nuts

    We have mentioned that nut butters are healthy, so it makes sense that nuts are just as healthy.

    Among the most satisfying snacks in the world, nuts can definitely be consumed by those looking to lose a few pounds. One can eat almonds, pecans, walnuts, and pistachios, but only in moderate quantities (as these are rich in calories).

    It is important to know that regular consumption of nuts has been associated with a reduced abdominal circumference (as opposed to the consumption of carbs, which does exactly the opposite)[8].

    Nuts are rich in healthy, monounsaturated fats, keeping the heart healthy as well. Just make sure you avoid nut snack packs with added sugar or salt.

    12. Berries

    While most fruits are rich in sugar and not recommended to those interested in losing weight, berries represent the exception.

    The fruits of the forest are rich in fiber, allowing one to experience prolonged satiety. You can see some of the most common healthy berries below[9]:

    Fresh berries: healthy foods for weight loss

      Whether you prefer blueberries, raspberries, or strawberries, it’s worth knowing that all of these small fruits are rich in antioxidants. They provide protection against the damage done by free radicals and, as a bonus, they do not contain a lot of sugar.

      13. Legumes

      Legumes, including beans and lentils, can be turned into the most satisfying meals.

      For someone looking for healthy foods for weight loss, they are excellent. On the one hand, they are rich in fiber and, thus, help you feel fuller for longer. On the other hand, they represent a good source of healthy proteins, which are necessary for an active metabolism.

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      Beans of various sorts, as well as lentils, are rich in minerals and vitamins (especially the ones from the B group). They can prevent you from becoming bloated, plus they contribute to the development of lean muscle mass[10].

      How about a delicious lentil soup for lunch today?

      14. Whole Grains

      Many problems are caused by eating refined grains–these are often found in processed foods, increasing the risk of abdominal weight.

      Whole grains, on the contrary, can contribute to your weight loss efforts. You can integrate quinoa, amaranth, barley, millet and brown rice into your diet, mixing them with Greek yogurt for a delicious treat[11].

      Whole Grains | The Nutrition Source | Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health

        Rich in minerals and satisfying, they will keep you full for a long time.

        15. Bananas

        Perhaps one of the most popular fruits in the world, the common banana is actually a superstar. Rich in potassium and magnesium, it represents the ideal choice for those who are overweight and plan on going on a diet.

        Bananas counteract the effect of processed foods, helping with the elimination of water weight (salt-associated retention water weight).

        It has also been proven that bananas contribute to the health of the gut flora, replenishing the good bacteria.

        You can eat bananas as such, enjoying their delicious taste, or you can eat them with nut butters, cereals, or fresh berries. Frozen bananas can be turned into mouth-watering ice cream, a healthy version of the store-bought alternative[12].

        Conclusion

        These are some of the most effective and nutritious healthy foods for weight loss. As you have seen, these are easy to integrate into the daily diet and offer prolonged satiety.

        Do not hesitate to have fun while preparing your meals, and remember to drink plenty of water, as this can help with the weight loss process as well.

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        It’s never too late to start a new diet and change your lifestyle, so don’t wait to get started.

        More Healthy Foods to Lose Weight

        Featured photo credit: Jamie Street via unsplash.com

        Reference

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        Evlin Symon

        Evlin Symon is a health and wellness expert specialized in fitness, weight loss, pregnancy, nutrition and beauty.

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        Last Updated on June 9, 2021

        How to Lose 10 Pounds in 3 Weeks: 20 Simple Tips

        How to Lose 10 Pounds in 3 Weeks: 20 Simple Tips

        Weight loss has become a sticky subject of confusion, conflicting information and myths. Before you know it, you’re on the crash-course diet from hell and getting no-where! Sustainable weight loss is not a fad diet or program, it’s a lifestyle. With these 20 proven weight loss tips, you can lose 10 pounds in 3 weeks. Best of all, you will set yourself up for continued progress every week!

        1. The Golden Rule: Calories In vs. Calories Out

        This simple fact simply cannot be overruled – to lose weight you must burn more calories than you consume.

        Use tools to help track and measure your daily intake then slowly taper down. Start with 500kcal steps or lower until you observe a consistent weekly loss.

        Never go dangerously low, eating much below 1200-1600 can stall your progress and harm your health!

        2. Set Attainable Goals And Track Your Progress

        Achieving each goal will help spur you on, so be realistic and start small. Here is an example of an easily achievable goal progression:

        • Lose weight each week
        • Lose 1-3 pounds per week
        • Lose 10 pounds in 3 weeks
        • Fit into size 30 jeans!

        3. Consider Skipping Breakfast

        Breakfast is commonly considered the most important meal of the day, however, it is not so when it comes to weight loss.

        Intermittent fasting can be a useful fat-loss tool. Restrict yourself to a smaller eating window by skipping breakfast and only eating from 12-8pm. You will reduce your daily calorie intake without restricting your lunch and dinner!

        4. Drink More Water (Especially Before Meals)

        Drinking water an hour before eating has two proven benefits for weight loss:

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        • 24-30% boost in metabolism for 1-1.5 hours after intake[1]
        • Increased chance of consuming less calories which further supports weight loss[2]

        5. Make Coffee Your New Best Friend

        Coffee has received a bad reputation in the past, however, it should be known that quality coffee is rich in antioxidants and beneficial to weight loss.

        The caffeine content will boost your body’s metabolism by up to 10%,[3] leading to a 10-29% increase in fat burning power. Take it black, with no added sugar!

        6. Make Green Tea Your Second Best Friend

        Green tea provides a milder dose of caffeine but it is abundant in wonderful catechins. These antioxidants will work with the caffeine in a perfect fat burning harmony!

        7. Always Check For Added Sugar

        Sugar has demonstrated worryingly strong links with obesity, diabetes[4] and heart disease[5] (to name a few).

        But even if you do not add it yourself, you should check the ingredients of your sauces or packaged foods. Even self-proclaimed health foods can be riddled with added sugar!

        8. Cut Out Simple Carbohydrates

        Simple/refined carbohydrates are quickly absorbed, spiking your blood sugar and insulin levels in the process.[6] As a result, you will feel hunger and cravings come back again in no time!

        Avoid all sugar or refined grains by avoiding the following foods:

        • Cookies, candy and sweets
        • Packaged cereals
        • White bread and rice
        • Cakes

        9. Scale Down Your Portion Sizes

        It pays to become aware of how much you are eating, exercise portion control and slowly scale it down.

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        Even small reductions of 10-20% are often enough to tip the balance and trigger weight loss. Try measuring your portions more carefully and don’t underestimate the power of using smaller bowls![7]

        10. Keep Healthy Food On Standby for Stacks

        The power of temptation is mighty, so why not remove it completely?

        Only keep healthy snacks within reach, then you won’t be able to binge on junk food! Here are some healthy ideas to stock your cupboard:

        • Whole fruit
        • Handful of nuts
        • Hard boiled eggs
        • Vegetables

        11. Spice Up Your Life

        Breathe new life into your dishes and reinforce your weight loss efforts with the power of cayenne pepper! Capsaicin from cayenne pepper and other spicy foods helps to ramp up metabolism and decrease appetite.[8]

        12. Top Up Your Protein Intake

        Protein rich foods not only keep you fuller for longer[9] but burn more energy during digestion. Studies have shown that swapping calories for whey protein supplements can boost weight loss whilst increasing lean muscle![10]

        Alternatively, here are a number of protein-rich food sources:

        • Lean beef
        • Skinless chicken breasts
        • Eggs
        • Salmon
        • Low-fat yogurt

        13. Balance Your Diet With Complex Carbs

        Consuming complex carbs will produce a sustained energy release and keep blood sugar levels manageable. You can easily keep hunger and cravings at bay with these nutrient dense complex carbs:

        • Vegetables
        • Fruit
        • Brown rice
        • Wholegrains
        • Beans and legumes

        14. Forget About Fast Food

        Not matter how healthy it may claim to be, fast food is almost always laden with heart-clogging trans fats,[11] excessive sugar and salt.

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        Worse yet, these meals are high in calories whilst low in nutritional value, making them a terrible choice for fuel. Before you know it, you will have broken the cardinal rule of calories in vs. calories out!

        15. Watch Out for “Hidden Calories”

        There’s no need to completely forgo your favorite condiments, just make sure you are aware of their true caloric impact. It’s easy to go overboard and negate much of your hard work!

        Go easy with the following condiments and toppings, they are surprisingly heavy in calories:

        • Mayonnaise
        • Salad dressing
        • Cream
        • Cheese
        • Butter
        • Oils

        16. Choose Low-Medium GI Foods

        High GI foods sources cause sugar levels to shoot up, the resultant spike in insulin will actually encourage dreaded fat storage![12]

        Check out the GI scale and choose low-medium GI foods. Your insulin levels will remain under control, you will feel fuller for longer and find it easier to lose weight!

        17. Opt For Weight Training Over Cardio

        Weight training burns a significant amount of calories, keeping you strong, fit and healthy in the process. It’s more effective than cardio for body recomposition as it helps preserve essential muscle mass whilst you lose weight.[13]

        Studies have also shown a significant increase in metabolic rate both during and after your workout,[14] further supporting your weight loss efforts!

        Choose a routine that uses compound lifts such as Presses, Squats and Deadlifts. These exercises recruit the largest amount of muscles per movement, ideal for maintaining lean muscle mass and trimming body fat.

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        18. Go Walking or Cycling

        Consistent small actions soon add up to big changes. For this reason, why not choose to walk or cycle whenever you can? You will burn more calories as you go about your day without the need for further diet restrictions.

        You can burn more calories as you go about your day, without any further diet restriction. If you’re physically able there is no excuse, take the stairs over escalators and lifts!

        19. Get Enough Sleep

        Sleep is highly underrated for weight loss. Forget about the 6-hour minimum claim, many of us require 8-9 hours to operate at peak efficiency.

        Both duration and quality of sleep will have a great influence on hormones that control body composition. In fact, poor sleep has shown worrying links to obesity, increasing the risk in adults by 55%![15]

        20. Be Careful Of Liquid Calories!

        We all know alcohol dehydrates and damages our liver and kidneys. But it can also thwart weight loss efforts as an unexpected source of calories.

        You may be surprised to know a beer can equate to 150kcal, 125kcal for a glass of red wine and a whopping 400Kcal for a single sweet Piña Colada! Instead, try sticking to tonic water with a slice of lime, your body will thank you!

          So there you have the 20 simple lifestyle tips that will support you in achieving healthy weight loss. Adopt as many as you can and you will easily lose 10 pounds or more in 3 weeks!

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          Featured photo credit: Lecic via shutterstock.com

          Reference

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