There can come a time in anybody’s life when you look at yourself in the mirror and ask yourself whether you’re really happy with who you are and how you look. As well as exercising, improving your diet is the best way to lose weight. Winning the battle with the bulge is not just about reading a list such as this, though; it’s also about being prepared to make that change; to ditch the foods that taste good for you, and to start experimenting with a new way of living, and a new way of cooking. If you’re prepared to do the hard work, then let’s take a look at 50 of amazing healthy foods for weight loss.
When we talk about losing weight, few people seem to mention water. Instead, they talk about embracing diet soda, fruit juice and energy drinks. But I’m sorry to tell you this, all of those drinks are bad for you and will NOT help you lose weight!! Water is your friend. Water should be what you drink morning, noon and night, and you should even drink it to satisfy your hunger.
See, whenever we feel hungry at odd times – such as the middle of the afternoon an hour after dinner – we’re not necessarily hungry. We’re just thirsty. But because far too many of us get our water from food, such as burgers and bacon, our brain is wired in such a way to cause us to crave food to satisfy our thirst.
Grapefruit is another one of fabulous healthy foods for weight loss, it can make for a fantastic, sweet breakfast that helps you to shed the pounds. Whereas a traditional breakfast composed of bacon, sausages, beans and fried eggs helps you to put weight on, grapefruit will not only help you to lose weight, but it also comes with numerous other health benefits too. For example, grapefruit is rich in potassium vitamin C and folic acid, and can reduce your risk of heart disease. If you don’t fancy eating it at breakfast time, slice it up and add it to a refreshing evening salad, it’s one of the amazing healthy foods for weight loss.
Lettuce is definitely one of the great healthy foods for weight loss, with a a single pound containing just 70 calories max. This basically makes it one of the true kings of diet food. Lettuce is also a fantastic source of nutrients, including folic aced, manganese and vitamin B. It helps to keep blood sugar levels normal, and gives your immune system a boost. There are different types of lettuce available, so you don’t need to get stuck eating something you don’t like. These include green, dark green, purple, or red.
Radishes are one of the most overlooked vegetables in our supermarkets, which is surprising when you consider how eye catchingly colourful they are. But if you’re looking to lose weight, you should ignore these red lovelies at your peril. Radishes are crammed with fantastic nutrients, such as potassium, antioxidants, folic acids and sulphuric compounds. Moreover, their leafy green tops are not to be forgotten either, as they are rich in more vitamin C and calcium than the actual roots. To get the most out of radishes, thinly slice them and include in a green salad. Lovely.
Spinach is one of our favourite vegetables here at Beauty and Tips. Not only is it tasty, easy to cook and great to add to a variety of dishes, but it’s also super healthy and a great way to get yourself a much leaner body. Spinach is a dark leafy green that contains plenty of folic acid, iron, and vitamin K. It’s also rich in numerous antioxidants, as well as vitamin C, and can fight against macular degeneration. It can easily be added to your salad as a substitute for lettuce, or you can add it to a stir fry or try for breakfast with your Eggs Florentine.
- Whole Eggs
Whole eggs sound fearsomely like they would help you to put on weight; after all whole eggs? That’s kinda a giveaway. But the reality is that the food which everyone thought was one of the chief causes of cholesterol is actually really healthy for you – and great at helping you lose weight. Whole eggs are rich in protein and good fats. Perhaps one of their best attributes is that they can make you feel full for longer, thus meaning that you don’t raid the snack cupboards after lunch. You can eat then scrambled, boiled, fried or as part of an omelette, frittata…and so on!
Salmon is one of the great healthy foods for weight loss. An oily fish, it also helps you to feel full for longer, despite having little calorie count. Salmon is basically crammed with lots if protein, good fats and numerous great nutrients. It also arms you with iodine, an important nutrient that keeps your metabolism ticking over, ensuring that you don’t pile on the pounds. Indeed, studies have shown that a rise in worldwide obesity is linked to a lack of iodine in people. Salmon is also rich in omega-3 fatty acids which also play a key role in weight loss.
- Boiled Potatoes
We live in a world in which certain foods have become incredibly trendy and hip in recent years. As such, sweet potatoes are very much the “in” potato, while the humble white potato has fallen out of favour. This is such a shame because white potatoes are one of the great healthy foods for weight loss. White potatoes are rich in a wealth of essential nutrients, and it’s even possible to just live on potatoes alone – and still stay healthy. High in potassium, they help you to feel satisfied for longer.
Tuna is another one of healthy foods for weight loss and eating it regularly also helps to stay in a “happy weight range.” This is because tuna is high in protein but low in calories. It’s also lean, which means there isn’t much fat. Bodybuilders and fitness models swear by it, and whatever they swear by has to be good for you.
Foods with a low energy density cause us to eat fewer calories. This is a fact. Because foods with low energy density tend to contain lots of water, it makes sense that soup would be one of the best healthy foods for weight loss. The great thing about homemade is that you control how much water you add; the more water, the better! (Just don’t add so much that you ruin it) Studies have shown that if you eat the exact same food but in soup form (as opposed to solid form) you will feel fuller, and will be thus less inclined to consume more calories.
They say that healthy foods for weight loss taste bland, but salsa is here to prove that this doesn’t have to be the case. When many people think of salsa, they think they should pair it up with fried tortilla chips, or even a calorie-busting margarita. But if you don’t pair it up with fatty food, salsa is actually really low in calories. You can either make your own salsa, or you can buy it from the grocery store. If you choose to buy it, it’s important that you get it from the refrigerated section so that it’s nice and fresh. To lose weight, you could match salsa up with a dish of hummus, with some olives and lettuce on the side.
- Chia Seeds
Our good friends, the chia seeds, will soon be your new friends too. Chia seeds are rich in all kinds of beneficial nutrients, including omega-3s, iron and calcium. In a way, chia seeds act very much like a sponge in that they absorb sugar and better regular your blood sugar levels. They are also high in fibre and can hold around 15 times their weight in water. What this means if that they’re mixed with liquid, such as porridge, they absorb any excess moisture. Great for losing weight, add them to your breakfast meal today.
Quinoa is a gluten-free complete protein grain and it’s also one of fabulous healthy foods for weight loss. It’s inexpensive to buy, and can also be bought in bulk and stored in your fridge five days after opening. You can either eat quinoa by itself, or you can pair it up with just about anything. And I mean anything. You can mix it into your scrambled egg, include it in a salad, eat it with some lean meat, or even put it on toast. Quinoa is classed as a complete protein because it contains all the essential amino acids. These are acids which your body doesn’t produce, meaning you have to get them from your diet. They also contain lots of B vitamins.
- Parmesan Cheese
Who’d have thought that eating cheese could actually help you to lose weight?! Well, certainly not all cheeses can help you to lose weight. But if parmesan happens to be your favourite cheese, you’ll be pleased to hear that it can become an asset when you’re shedding the pounds. To get the most out of parmesan cheese, simply slice it and place it onto your whole-grain crackers. This combination is ideal if you’re on a strict diet. Parmesan is also super tasty, helps to build stronger bones, and can help you to feel full for longer.
Yogurt is another one of belly-flattening healthy foods for weight loss. Of course, not all yogurts are healthy, and some are really fattening. But if you choose a low – or even non-fat yogurt, you’ll be onto a winner. Greek yogurt is the quintessential yogurt for when you’re shedding the poundage. It contains less than half as much sodium as normal yogurt, as well as zero preservatives and artificial sweeteners. It’s also rich in priobotics, a strain of bacteria that reduces the amount of fat that your body stores away.
- Dark Chocolate
Chocolate has always been a weakness of many. The thing is, though, that chocolate can actually be quite good for you and surprisingly, it even deserves to be mentioned in the list of healthy foods for weight loss. Dark chocolate is a great snack to eat between meals because it contains vital antioxidants and flavorins that combat free radicals and improve our heart’s health. Studies have also shown that eating just two squares of dark chocolate in-between meals means we eat less later on in the day – which is great if you’re looking to lose weight.
Apples are one of the most popular healthy foods for weight loss. Although the apple itself might not contain qualities that are going to help you shed the pounds straight away, because it’s a whole fruit it’s going to blunt your appetite enough, so that you don’t eat as much. Whole fruits such as apples are ideal for feeling full for longer, and they’re certainly more effective at satisfying our appetites than fruit juices. One of the reasons is because fruit such as apples contain fibre.
Almonds should be in your cupboards at all times if you’re looking to lose weight the healthy way. Instead of stashing away chocolates and candies, you need to start stocking up on healthier snacks. Almonds pack great flavour and a crunch, and they are also rich in mono saturated fats, which are basically the fats that are good for you. Indeed, these fats have been proven to reduce the risk of heart disease, as well as lower your cholesterol levels. Research has also shown that if you eat just a handful of almonds a day, you’ll have a much healthier body weight and and a more attractive shape. You simply can’t lose!
You cannot go wrong if you introduce beans into your diet. And because there are so many different types of beans out there, it won’t take you too long until you find ones that you love. Whether it’s black beans, cannelini beans, soybeans or lentils, beans add colour and taste to your meals. Rich in fibre, they also make a good base for salsas. Beans are also rich in numerous useful nutrients, including folate, manganese, potassium, iron and magnesium, and they also contain more protein any all the other veggies. They also pack a punch, with their complex carb content ensuring they keep you feeling satisfied for longer.
- Bell Peppers
Bell peppers are also one of amazing healthy foods for weight loss. For just a small buck, you get a whopping nutritional bang with sweet bell peppers. Each pepper contains just 35 calories, which is great news. They also contain plenty of nutrients, such as vitamins A and B6, as well as folic acid. Bell peppers can easily be added to a variety of dishes, including stir fries and salads. You can also finely chop them and add them to a confetti pasta dish.
There are many different types of mushrooms out there: There are portobello mushrooms, chanterelle mushrooms, white mushrooms, oyster mushrooms, shiitake mushrooms, cremini mushrooms – and many more. In fact, there are so many mushrooms that if you’re the type of person who says “eew, never liked mushrooms”, the chances are that you’ve just not found the one you like. Mushrooms are really great, they are definitely a part of healthy foods for weight loss. Even the massive steak-like portobello mushroom can help you lose weight, despite feeling like a steak and tasting like a steak. This is because mushrooms are just naturally satisfying and, when eaten as part of a starter, help you to feel so satisfied that you don’t go on to eat the whole restaurant.
- Low Calorie Deserts
We all that deserts are calorific. But this is certainly not true of all deserts. Okay, so we are not going to try and convince you that deserts could ever be termed a health food or a super food (that really would be stretching it), but if you become a lot pickier about your deserts, you could easily enjoy something indulgent after your dinner without worrying about all the weight you’re about to pile on. See, sticking to a healthy diet is not easy, and we often need to give ourselves a reward that serves as motivation. After a whole week of dieting, I used to treat myself to ice cream every Sunday. This gave me something to look forward to and ensured I stuck to my strict diet. Therefore, it’s important that you don’t eliminate deserts from your weekly shop altogether. Instead, find a low calorie alternative to your usual entree.
What you eat for breakfast is really important. Some people who are on a diet skip breakfast altogether, but this is a really common error that comes with repercussions; if you skip breakfast, you’re heading to work on an empty belly. This means that you’re probably going to snack on really bad stuff, thereby putting on weight. Instead, you should consider eating a bowl of oatmeal before you set off for the office. Oatmeal is one of amazing healthy foods for weight loss, it is rich in so-called slow release carbs, which are better than refined carbs at regulating your blood sugar levels. This is important because a spike in insulin levels can cause weight gain.
An apple a day might keep the doctor away, but pears are another one of really healthy foods for weight loss. In fact, it has now been discovered that pears have more fibre than first thought, and actually have more than even apples. Indeed, they have more fibre than any other fruit (apple comes in second). Containing six grams per pear, they’re awesome at filling you up for longer. Pears also contain something called pectin fibre, which has been found to lower blood-sugar levels, therefore helping you keep the pounds off.
If you’ve never heard of kale, you’re clearly new to this whole diet game. Kale has become the darling of health and fitness fanatics everywhere over the last twelve months, and has variously been nicknamed “the queen of greens” and “the new beef”. It’s trendy, but it’s also one of really healthy foods for weight loss. A single cup of chopped kale contains just 34 calories and 1.4 grams of fibre. It’s also rich in more iron and calcium than its dark leafy cousin, spinach. It’s also really versatile too, and can be included in an assortment of dishes, from broths to salads, stir fries to casseroles. You could even have it as breakfast if you want, substituting it for spinach with your eggs florentine.
Lentils are an authentic belly flattener, and they are one of the most satisfying healthy foods for weight loss. Eating lentils can prevent any nasty spikes in your insulin levels, thereby helping you to keep the pounds off. There are numerous types of lentils out there, such as red and yellow, so you might have to do some shopping around and tasting before finding the ones that really suit you and excite your tastebuds. You can cook them into your pasta sauce, or add to a soup or salad. And because they’re also high in protein, you might even find yourself skipping meat from now on.
- Goji Berries
You might not have heard of goji berries, but these should be your new go-to snack if you’re hungry at inconvenient times. Goji berries are a great way of staying full throughout the day, thanks to their being a complete protein – they contain 18 amino acids, which basically makes them an awesome source of protein. Moreover, they contain just 35 calories per tablespoon. So if you’re looking to stay satisfied until dinner, get on the goji berry train. You can mix them with raisins and walnuts for a more interesting snack, or include them as part of a desert.
- Buckwheat Pasta
You might have heard that pasta is fattening, but buckwheat isn’t an ordinary pasta. Plain noodles are bland anyway, and you’ll get much more taste out of this hearty variety. Buckwheat pasta is rich in protein and fibre, which is unusual for a pasta. Because of this, you won’t feel the temptation to overeat as much. Instead, you’ll be slipping into your old jeans in no time at all! Simply cook it as you would rice and toss with a few healthy vegetables.
Like goji berries, blueberries make for an excellent snack substitute to all the candies and chocolates you’ve been relying on these past few years. You don’t need to worry about this snack being bland and tasteless either, because blueberries are among the most flavoursome foods on the planet. Easy to nibble on while watching a movie, there’s absolutely no chance you’ll pile on the pounds with these berries that contain 3.6 g of fibre per cup.
- Almond Butter
We’ve already covered almonds, but almond butter is something else altogether and surprisingly it’s one of great healthy foods for weight loss. Okay, it’s derived from almonds, but this treat of a spread helps to lower the bread’s glycemic index. So it’s essentially magic butter. Studies have shown that people who eat almond butter with their white bread don’t experience the same spikes in insulin as those who don’t.
- Green Tea
They say the world is divided up between those who prefer tea and those who prefer coffee, but how about breaking the mould and preferring green tea instead? Green tea is one of the healthiest drinks you can have, and it’s great for helping you lose weight too. Studies have shown that if you you exercise regularly and sip at least 4 cups of green tea a day, you’ve got a much better chance of shedding the poundage than those who don’t. This is because green tea contains vital antioxidants that prevent our bellies from storing fat. Yay!
If you’ve already boarded the almond train, it’s time to go even more nuts because adding pistachios to your diet is a massive step in the right direction if you’re looking to lose weight. Pistachios are really healthy too. Studies have shown that people who add these nuts to their diet significantly reduce their risk of developing heart disease and diabetes. Moreover, you can get 20% of your total calories from this nut, while at the same time increasing your good fat and protein intake while lowering your carbs intake. After just a few months of munching away on these as a snack, you could easily have a much smaller waist.
- Coconut Oil
Oil probably doesn’t sound like one of the healthy foods for weight loss, but you really should make an exception here. See, coconut oil can significantly reduce your waist circumference, increase your good cholesterol level, and reduce your risk of heart disease.
- Red Wine
One of the things you might be dreading about your new diet is having to cut out the alcohol. But, guess what? You don’t have to! As long as you’re smart about what you drink, and as long as you drink in moderation, you don’t need to worry. Red wine is my number 1 choice when it comes to alcohol and weight loss. This is because it contains something called resveratrol, an anti-ageing antioxidant that also acts as a fat releaser. Of course, all alcohol contains calories, and the more you drink, the more weight you’ll gain. It’s all about moderation, and a glass or two at the weekend is perfectly fine.
A number of fruits are high in sugar, and therefore should generally be avoided if you’re looking to lose weight. But one fruit that is particularly low in sugar is the exotic avocado. If you eat just half an avocado each day, you can decrease your appetite by almost half for the next few hours. Naturally, I’m not suggesting you just munch on this fruit for your dinner – you can include it as part of a salad.
Grapes are also part of great healthy foods for weight loss, they contain plenty of phenols and polyphenols, phytonutrients that have been shown to reduce the risk of metabolic diseases. The amount of polyphenol content in grapes is quite high; so high, in fact, that it boosts insulin sensitivity. There is a trade-of, though; grapes are quite calorific, so you’ve got to be careful not too eat too many. We suggest no more than a single cup a day.
- Sweet Potato
Sweet potato is the sweetest of all potatoes, and perhaps even the sweetest of all vegetables. It’s experiencing a bit of a resurgence in popularity at the moment, with many consumers preferring it to the humble white potato. In case you weren’t aware of its health properties, sweet potato contains plenty of antioxidants and anti-inflammatories which aid our heart, our digestive system, as well as our eyes. It also has a relatively low glycemic index, which ensures we keep the fat off our bellies.
Cinnamon is one of the healthiest spices you can eat. It’s loaded with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties, and has been show to reduce your risk of heart disease and diabetes. Even just a sprinkle of the stuff can help to better regulate your blood sugar levels, as well as curb cravings. As such, it’s great for losing weight. You can include cinnamon as part of your evening meals, or you can scatter it over your coffee or cup of tea. It’s up to you!
- Lean Meats
You might have been disappointed to see an absence of meats on this list of healthy foods for weight loss so far, but fear not! We know how meat is an integral part of many peoples’ diets around the world. There is certainly a fallacy going around that meat is really bad for you if you’re trying to lose weight, but all you need to do is be a bit more selective about the types of meat you eat. Lean meat is a fantastic source of protein, and fitness fanatics absolutely swear by it. It keeps you full, and ensures you avoid the fatty processed meats.
We all LOVE hummus. Mmm! It is a fantastically healthy snack and one of great healthy foods for weight loss. Composed of chickpeas, it’s stuffed with protein. You can dip your veggies in it or spread it on a salad or sandwich. Indeed, it makes a great substitute for mayo.
Popcorn is synonymous with going to the movies. The rule is that if you go to the movies, you have to buy popcorn. It has got a bad reputation for being unhealthy, but there is a massive difference between organic popcorn and non-organic popcorn. Moreover, if you microwave your popcorn, then it’s obviously going to be bad for you! Organic popcorn is rich in antioxidants and low in calories. As such, it makes a great alternative to greasy, fatty snacks whenever you’re feeling hungry. Just avoid the temptation of a melted butter topping.
- Spaghetti Squash
Now we’re talking. Spaghetti squash sounds amazing – and it is. You simply cannot go wrong with this gorgeous secret. Low in carbs, it’s a pasty dinner that doesn’t leave you feeling bloated and fat afterwards. In fact, a cup of spaghetti squash contains just 42 calories. It’s comfort food for whenever your diet is beginning to get you down!
If you’re trying to lose weight, you shouldn’t eat too much fruit. Fruit can be rich in sugar and it can help you pile on the pounds. But in moderation it’s fantastic, and strawberries are a case in point. A cup of strawberries contains around 50 calories and just 6 grams of sugar. At the same time, it gives you 3 grams of fibre. Perhaps the best thing about strawberries is that, despite a low sugar content, they satisfy your sugar cravings. Which is what you want.
Bananas are perhaps one of the tastiest healthy foods for weight loss; they also are useful largely because of how portable they are. You can easily peel one on a train without any hassle! They are a great on-the-go option. They taste great, are healthy – and help you to lose weight, mainly because of their high fibre and potassium. Bananas are also a good source of vitamin B6, which helps to lower your risk of developing heart disease.
How tasty are kiwis?! They say that healthy food doesn’t taste nice, but they’re just plain wrong and the kiwi fruit proves it. Kiwi is also rich in fibre, which helps you to lose weight. Moreover, those black seeds might look tiny and irrelevant, but they actually provide your digestive with some much-needed insoluble fibre.
If you’re on the hunt for a diet that is low in calories, peaches should be near to the top of your shopping list. Rich in fibre, vitamins and potassium, peaches have been proven to help you get your body into tip-top shape. They also contain beneficial antioxidants that only reinforce the idea that you should eat more of ‘em.
Pomegranates is another one of great healthy foods for weight loss, it can prevent the build up of the arterial lipid. While this might sound like nothing you need to be bothered about, it actually means that your appetite is reduced – which is ideal right now! Pomegranate can also handily reduce LDL cholesterol, as well as rid your body of nasty toxins.
What are your favourite healthy foods for weight loss?