As part of a weight loss project, a question keeps coming back: what are the foods that make you lose weight?
Between all the weight loss methods whose speeches are often contradictory, it is not always easy to disentangle the true from the false. In this article, find out what to eat to lose weight sustainably and healthily.
First of all, it is very important to emphasize that no food is a miracle. In other words, no food alone allows you to lose weight.
However, we know that certain foods promote weight loss and the maintenance of a healthy weight when they are integrated into a varied diet.
To lose weight, daily energy intake must be slightly lower than daily energy expenditure.
For this, it is not necessarily necessary to eat less but above all to eat… better! Eating better is relatively simple once you take into account the energy density of a food.
Energy density is the number of calories provided by one gram of food.
The lower the energy density, the more it takes a large volume of the food in question to reach a given number of calories.
For example, you have to consume a lot of cucumbers to reach 100 kcal. On the contrary, a few grams of cookies are enough to reach 100 kcal.
Based on this principle, it is considered that the foods that make you lose weight are those whose energy density is low.
Indeed, in addition to being a source of micronutrients, they allow you to be satiated quickly for a lower calorie intake. As a result, they naturally promote weight loss.
To lose weight, there is therefore no longer any secret: you have to turn to foods with low energy density. Here is a non-exhaustive list of these foods to help you make the right choices:
•Light dairy products
Be careful, some foods have a high energy density but should be integrated into the daily diet because of their essential contribution of high-quality nutrients.
In particular, this is the case for vegetable oils and oilseeds.
In the following, we will explain which food groups are important for weight loss and which positive properties (valuable nutrients, low glycemic index) each of the 30 foods offer.
Micronutrients such as vitamin C, B1 (thiamine), B2 (riboflavin), B3 (niacin), B5 (pantothenic acid), B6 (pyridoxine), B7 (biotin), B12 (cobalamin) as well as calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, iron, iodine, copper and manganese contribute to normal energy metabolism. Zinc also contributes to normal fatty acid metabolism.
Aside from water and broth, no other food is as low in calories as vegetables.
It is therefore clear that vegetables are the ideal food group for weight loss. You should therefore add the following vegetables to your shopping list now:
Their potassium, healthy fats, and 3% fibre make avocados a perfect slimming food.
By eating this fruit in a salad, the avocado is considered a vegetable and significantly increases your nutrient intake.
But be careful: always take into account it’s a high number of calories (three times more than an apple): so don’t overdo it!
Vitamin C, calcium, phosphorus, potassium, and magnesium: are some of the micronutrients found in broccoli.
In addition, it contains only 31 kilocalories per 100 grams for a protein content of 3% and also provides fibre. Result: it is also a perfect vegetable for slimming.
Mushrooms (here classified as vegetables, although mushrooms form a group in their own right) are composed of 2.9% protein, low in calories (22 kcal / 100 g), and have a very low glycemic index (GI) of 15 (in comparison: glucose holds the maximum value with a GI of 100).
Mushrooms therefore hardly increase blood glucose levels. They are therefore among the best foods for weight loss.
Fennel also has a GI of 15. As this vegetable contains only 23 kilocalories per 100 grams, fennel is almost as good for weight loss as mushrooms. Only its protein content is not ideal since it is less than 1.1%.
100 grams of kale contains only 45 calories, but 4.3 grams of protein and 4.2 grams of fiber.
Plus, kale provides more than twice as much vitamin C as a lemon and contains other important nutrients like potassium, calcium, magnesium, and iodine. You can’t ask for more than a vegetable to lose weight.
Cucumber contains only 13 calories per 100 grams because it is 96% water.
Thanks to its high water content and high volume, cucumber also ensures good satiety. It is therefore perfectly suitable as a portion of food for weight loss.
Carrots are relatively low in calories (38 kcal / 100 g) and rich in fibre (2.6%), which is why they provide good satiety.
They are also rich in vitamin A and beta-carotene, which is good for the eyes.
One of the lowest calorie vegetables is rhubarb (12 kcal / 100 g). Yes, you read that right, botanically rhubarb is considered a vegetable.
In cooking, however, it is used like fruit because of its fruity taste. Like all spring vegetables, rhubarb contains valuable nutrients such as vitamin C and calcium.
Brussels sprouts have the perfect nutritional values for weight loss: 4.0% protein and 4.3% fibre with only 3.5% carbohydrates and 0.5% fat.
They, therefore, contain only 43 calories per 100 grams. And as a bonus: Brussels sprouts contain a lot of vitamin C, as well as calcium and magnesium in small amounts.
Is it really necessary to mention salad as the perfect slimming food? Low in calories and high in fibre, the salad will be your ideal weight loss ally.
We have summarized the main types of salad below, sorted in ascending order according to the number of calories each contains per 100 grams:
•Lollo Bionda (11 kcal)
•Chicory (14 kcal)
•Frisée, oak leaf, lettuce (14 kcal)
•Iceberg lettuce (16 kcal)
•Lollo Rosso, romaine lettuce, Batavia (16 kcal)
•Radicchio (17 kcal)
•Lamb’s lettuce, endive (23 kcal)
•Arugula (28 kcal)
Celeriac is made up of 90% water and therefore has a very low energy density (28 kcal / 100 g).
Is there better food for weight loss? Yes: the celery stalk, which is made up of 94% water and only has 14 kilocalories per 100 grams!
Asparagus, whether green or white, contains 27 kilocalories per 100 grams because it contains more than 90% water.
But asparagus also contains a lot of vitamins and minerals. The only downside is that this super vegetable only grows from March to June.
Spinach is low in calories (23 kcal / 100 g) and has a protein content of 2.7 grams and a fibre content of 2.6 grams with only 0.4 grams of fat and 0.8 grams of carbohydrates.
Spinach also contains thylakoids, and herbal appetite suppressants: this food is designed for weight loss!
Its 31 calories, 2.8 grams of protein, and 2.6 grams of fibre per 100 grams speak for themselves.
Additionally, cabbages also provide plenty of vitamin C, calcium, magnesium, and zinc. A portion of quality food that can help you lose weight!
Tomatoes are known to be “consisting only of water”; at least for those who come from Holland.
This is slightly exaggerated: they have a water content of around 94% and ensure an extremely low caloric intake (21 kcal / 100 g).
This versatile fruit contains vitamin A, beta-carotene, and potassium, among other things.
Vegetables are low in calories, but let’s not forget fruits, with which it is also possible to lose weight.
But beware: on the whole, fruits are more caloric than vegetables because they are sweeter.
Thus, if you want to lose weight, it is not advisable to eat only fruits. Juices are especially not recommended for weight loss. Here is a list of some fruits that can help you lose weight:
Unpeeled apples provide plenty of vitamins and minerals like provitamin A, vitamins B1, B2, B6, E, and C, and potassium; for a total of 55 calories per 100 grams.
In addition, they contain pectin, a dietary fibre that promotes digestion and ensures a feeling of satiety.
Whether raspberries, strawberries, or blackberries, all the berries that grow here contain an average of 42 kilocalories per 100 grams when fresh or frozen (unsweetened). Many vitamins and minerals are added.
The benefits of a pear? The same as the apple. They are even better when it comes to dietary fibre!
We cannot talk about slimming fruits without talking about grapefruit. It has been scientifically proven that you can increase your chances of dieting success by eating half a grapefruit or 100 millilitres of grapefruit juice before your meal.
Why? Because you take in fewer calories and feel full faster. In addition, the bitter substances of the fruit prevent the storage of fats.
In terms of calories, watermelon has nothing to envy grapefruit: it contains only 30 kilocalories per 100 grams.
Moreover, it is made up of 92% water and can be counted among the best low-calorie appetite suppressants.
If you are looking for foods to lose weight, you will inevitably come across dairy products, as they are an almost essential source of protein.
Here is a list of dairy products that are low in fat and therefore perfect for losing weight:
This French processed cheese from Franche-Comté is the lowest calorie cheese with only 120 kcal per 100 g.
It can be eaten both hot and cold and is an excellent alternative for raclettes, for example.
Regardless of its fat content, cream cheese is always lower in calories than butter. In other words: prefer cream cheese to butter if you want to save calories and lose weight.
Goat cheeses are particularly rich in water. Fresh goat’s cheese contains 210 kcal per 100 g and can be eaten as is or used to make cooking recipes.
Foods for weight loss will always be high in protein and low in fat. Indeed, this combination allows you to feel full for a long time while ingesting relatively few calories.
Ricotta is one of those foods with the perfect combination. In addition, the calcium contained in ricotta contributes to normal energy metabolism.
Light cottage cheese is probably one of the best sources of protein: 11% protein for 0.2% lipids and only 62 kilocalories per 100 grams.
It is also very inexpensive and goes very well with fruits and vegetables.
Another positive point: cottage cheese is extremely filling! Indeed, it contains casein, a protein absorbed more slowly by the body and thus making the feeling of satiety last longer.
The nutritional value of low-fat natural yoghurt is similar to that of low-fat cottage cheese: with 40 calories per 100 grams, 4.3% protein, and, in the best case, only 0.1% fat, it is a great food for weight loss.
In addition, plain yoghurt has an excellent calcium intake. You can consume it as it is, but also as a milk substitute in your muesli or porridge for breakfast and as a base for dressings and sauces.
These are the accompaniments that give us the most satiety. This is because they generally contain a lot of carbohydrates.
Although the sides are not your best allies for losing weight, you should not eliminate them because of their satiating effect. Here is a list of foods that should accompany your steak or tofu:
White beans and kidney beans contain a lot of protein and fibre. They are thus a good accompaniment for those who want to lose weight, even if they are not low in calories.
On the other hand, green beans obtain good results with a low calorific value: they contain only 31 calories per 100 grams.
Rice is often frowned upon when talking about slimming because it is full of carbohydrates and therefore very high in calories.
But if you opt for the brown variant instead of the white, you will get a little more protein, but above all a lot more fibre. Thus, brown rice provides a longer feeling of satiety.
Potatoes are the perfect weight-loss accompaniment: they keep you full longer, contain high-quality protein as well as vitamins and minerals, and contain less fat and calories than you might expect. think: 100 grams of raw potatoes only average 76 kilocalories.
100 grams of dried chickpeas contain approximately 16 grams of fibre and 19 grams of protein, 44 grams of carbohydrates, and 4.9 grams of fat – a very good distribution of nutritional values.
They also contain calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus. And as a bonus, chickpeas offer good satiety thanks to their high fibre content and can be used in different ways, in salads or as an accompaniment to hot dishes.
But beware of hummus and falafel: the latter is on the other hand very rich in fat, so it is advisable not to abuse them to lose weight.
To lose weight, it is necessary to favour foods with low energy density. These are foods that provide a maximum of essential nutrients, for a lower amount of energy intake.
We, therefore, find raw vegetables, fruits, and vegetables, lean meats and fish, light dairy products, whole grains, and legumes.
Among them, some have a high energy density, but their contributions are essential.
Foods with high energy density are those which are to be avoided or limited in the context of a balanced diet.
To lose weight, it is not essential to banish all meat from your diet. There are very good products in the butcher’s department, especially white meat.
Some red meats are also excellent, especially for athletes.
However, you should reduce your consumption of fatty meats, especially certain parts of several animals. Limit duck and foie gras, as well as pig’s trotters, pork chops, and lamb chops.
Still in the meat department, pay close attention to the charcuterie. Most preparations combine raw meat and cooked meat, with lots of saturated fatty acids and salt.
As a result, this fat is stored in your body… and inevitably turns into weight gain. So watch out for these harmful fats, which can also turn into bad cholesterol and harm your cardiovascular health.
Some fatty fish can provide interesting and beneficial nutrients, such as salmon.
It is most often praised for its omega 3 intakes, although that of breeding is unfortunately often contaminated.
In this regard, prefer anchovies or mackerel. But the consumption of these so-called “fatty” fish should be limited to a maximum of two servings per week.
Some preparations don’t need to end up on your plate if you don’t like them. This is the case, for example, of sardines in oil, smoked fish (like an eel), or even dried fish (like cod). The lipid dose of these fish is far too high.
Alternate your consumption of fatty fish with lean fish and other protein sources. Plant-based proteins are a great alternative to meats and fish. They are mainly found in cereals and legumes, as well as in spirulina.
It’s hard not to crack… and yet, appetizer biscuits are a real weak point for your balanced diet.
Their flaw? They all or almost all contain excess calories and too much salt.
The solution? Simply avoid them, or switch to healthier aperitifs that are good for your body. Crunchy vegetables for example, or biscuits low in salt and rich in cereals.
Be careful, however, not to focus only on the cakes. It is also often the sauce that accompanies these biscuits which is caloric and too rich.
Alcohol can also interfere with your efforts to lose weight. For this reason, but also to prevent other problems (addiction, liver damage, etc.), it is best to avoid it or drastically limit our consumption.
Prefer non-alcoholic cocktails, light, made from fresh fruit. Beware of industrial fruit juices which often contain added sugars.
Lemon water, iced herbal infusions, or homemade fruit juices are better alternatives.
Frying is one of your line’s worst enemies! Fried foods should be avoided altogether if you are on a diet, or even if you want to maintain a balanced diet.
They are heavy, difficult to digest and provide extra fat that you don’t need. So yes, some foods that have been fried are “good”.
Do you fancy deep-fried chicken breast? In this case, prepare it yourself. Rather than buying saturated fat preparations on the market, make the effort to prepare them.
You will be able to dose the frying. Also, take the time to eliminate excess fat when it comes out of the fryer by placing the food on absorbent paper.
Also use healthy frying oils, which you will change regularly. The recipe is also very simple: egg yolk and a little flour, being careful to limit the amount of oil.
Finally, with absorbent paper, eliminate the excess fat that does not bring taste.
On the table, we all have a common enemy: white bread. Fresh from the bakery, it is very tempting and can be hard to resist!
However, white bread is a refined product that does not have great nutritional benefits.
Conversely, wholemeal bread is much richer in dietary fibre and minerals.
Dietary fibres are ideal for reinforcing the feeling of satiety at the end of meals and limiting cravings for snacking during the day.
They are also necessary for the balance of the microbiota, responsible for our immune system and the assimilation of nutrients.
Refined cereals are devoid of their original nutritional qualities. The transformation processes they have undergone to enable mass production have stripped them of their nutrients: vitamins, minerals, fibre, etc.
To eat healthier and lose weight sustainably, it is best to eat whole or whole grains. This applies to all products: bread, pasta, flour, etc.
Sugar is our number one enemy. Addictive, it is difficult to do without it, especially since it hides everywhere.
To lose weight, you must banish all foods that contain added sugars and refined sugars: cookies and cakes, pastries, industrial cereals, spreads, etc.
Take the time to consult the labels of the products you buy to flush out hidden sugars.
However, the best way to avoid refined sugar is to cook! This will allow you to choose healthy alternatives to white sugar.
It seemed almost useless to us to mention sweet biscuits and other chocolate bars that are far too rich in lipids and saturated fatty acids.
However, while many manufacturers continue to advertise their so-called benefits, the truth is quite different.
The consumption of these bars is falsely known for their supposed contributions to calcium or in “rich and complete” cereals prefer other foods.
For example, favour legumes or fruits in your snacks or those of your children. You will be able to adopt a healthy lifestyle and find the line.
Sodas are also too often found on our tables at mealtimes as usual drinks.
The latter is however too rich in fast sugars and synthetic sweeteners such as aspartame and acesulfame K (acesulfame potassium).
These undesirable ingredients increase the risk of diabetes and disrupt gut flora. Ultra-processed foods that contain dangerous ingredients such as aspartame are also associated with a significant risk of depression and the onset of metabolic syndrome.
We must therefore eliminate them from the table, or failing that, reserve them for occasions.
In this case, we try to limit ourselves to one drink. Nothing better than drinking water or pressed fruit juices (by hand or with a juice extractor, effective in preserving their benefits).
Syrups sometimes seem like a convincing alternative. However, they are very high in sugar and can interfere with your efforts to lose weight. Replace them with fruit-infused waters, if mineral water is not for you.
Emblem of our modern society, industrial dishes, and fast foods are the cause of many dietary imbalances.
But also overweight, obesity, and diabetes in Western civilizations. They are undeniably part of high-energy-density foods and have little nutritional value.
A few minutes of cooking, with fresh, seasonal, and local food, allow you to enjoy healthy and balanced dishes every day.
We don’t need these ready-to-eat meals that are stuffed full of salt, sugar, and bad fats. Take your place behind the stove to cook simple and convivial dishes!
As far as fast foods are concerned, the situation is the same. These products are too fatty, too sweet, and too salty. It is, therefore, necessary to avoid consuming them or to reserve them for exceptional occasions.
Don’t go there every week, especially if you want to lose weight permanently. And if you go there, order water instead of a soda.
You will have understood: that finding a healthy lifestyle involves major changes in your diet.
But these changes will benefit your health and that of your family. Here are some additional tips to shake up your bad habits and promote lasting weight loss.
•Never skip meals: your body risks having reserves if you don’t give it the energy and nutrients it needs every day;
•Eat slowly, calmly, and at the table, taking care to chew food well;
•Consume enough water every day (at least 1.5 litres);
•Promote fresh, local, and seasonal products in short circuit;
•Favor foods from organic farming, as well as simple, home cooking;
•Avoid salt and favour spices to give flavour to dishes;
•Develop a meal plan for the week and go shopping with a full stomach to limit temptations;
•Consume large quantities of cooked vegetables and raw vegetables at each meal.
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