What’s the best diet for weight loss? Keto? Paleo? As a registered dietitian, I suggest a flexible approach characterized by whole foods.
For weight loss, you will need to create an imbalance between the calories you consume and those you burn. These are some foods that will help get you there, and I explain why:
1. Greek yogurt:
This makes a great snack, is super simple, and is protein-rich, which makes it a great option to have something tasty and nutritious instead of eating something that will have you crashing shortly after. Protein helps you to stay full, so you will be less likely to overeat after your snack. You can top this with fruit to add a little sweetness, as well as fiber.
2. Frozen or fresh berries (blackberries, raspberries, strawberries, currants, etc.):
A high dose of antioxidants, high water, and fiber content is great for weight loss. The fruit is relatively low in calories compared to many foods, including processed foods, due to the high content of water and fiber. For lots more information, check out this post about why fruit is good for you in general.
Also Read: What Really is The Harm From Processed Foods
3. Chia seeds:
These hydration-loving seeds are extremely versatile and are high in fiber. They also contain some protein. They are a great weight-loss food because they provide substance, omega 3s, and come along with a good dose of hydration if you soak them in water and let them absorb it. They also aid in digestion.
Oats don’t have to just be for breakfast! Grind them in a blender into a flour, and you have a nutritious flour that adds protein and fiber to your baked goods. Oat flour tastes great, with a neutral flavor that works perfectly in sweet treats. As an added benefit, you can also eat whole oats for breakfast, as you already most likely know. To make them more interesting, drizzle them with nut butter, top with shredded coconut, add some mashed raspberries as a jam, and dig in!
5. Whole-grain bread:
It might be surprising to see bread listed as weight-loss friendly, but it’s important not to deprive yourself when trying to lose weight. Losing weight healthfully means eating a varied diet, with nutrient-rich foods, and, above all, creating an energy imbalance. Bread can have a place in this healthful diet; it’s just a matter of choosing a healthful one! A healthy bread can be a satisfying component of a meal and gives you protein, fiber, as well as important vitamins and minerals.
6. Nut butter:
Nut butter satisfies a desire for something rich and creamy while contributing nutrients you need, meaning you get healthy fats instead of getting a lot of saturated fat and sugar from eating something like Nutella or Reese’s peanut cups. While nut butter is relatively high in calories, it is a healthy part of a diet for weight loss, as it will keep you satisfied due to the content of fat, protein, and fiber.
Also Read: Healthy Foods That Keep You Sated All Day
These satisfy a sweet tooth, meaning you can avoid empty calories of desserts with lots of added sugar. They also have beneficial micronutrients and fiber. Dessert choices that contain fiber are great to keep you satisfied and prevent overeating.
This is another sweet option that is like a dessert on its own. While this is a fruit that is very sweet, it does not contribute added sugar to the diet like conventional desserts but does provide many vitamins and minerals. It, of course, also contains fiber. You might choose mango with some plain yogurt as a delicious dessert.
9. Bell peppers:
You might be starting to see a pattern now, and that is that many of the foods listed here are high in water and fiber, and also provide plenty of vitamins and minerals. While we are losing weight, it’s important to be sure we are still meeting our needs for all of the essential nutrients, and that means being sure to eat vegetables.
Sufficient protein is an important part of a diet for weight loss, as it helps you stay satisfied and is also required in the diet. Salmon is an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids as well, which we must obtain from the diet. We can obtain protein both from plant and animal sources, and I advocate for both, with the main emphasis on plants.
You might be surprised by some of the foods I have listed here. In fact, all foods can fit in a weight-loss diet, but it is important to emphasize whole foods and limit those that are processed and contain a lot of added sugar and fat. You’ll note that water and fiber are important. It’s important to understand that excessive restriction can hinder your weight-loss plans, so seek to make small changes that you will enjoy for sustained weight loss.
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