2015 is right around the corner and many of us are anxious to lose a few pounds. Food choices are crucial and there are obvious ones to avoid. But here are five foods that can actually help you lose weight!
- Hummus and Veggies – This spread made from chickpeas is a protein-rich snack that fights hunger and helps balance blood sugar levels. Hummus can actually boost energy levels and when you pair it with vegetables that are high in vitamin C, such as red pepper slices, they can help your body absorb the iron in the hummus.
- Salsa – Fresh salsa can be an excellent snack choice when you don’t pair it with greasy chips. Studies have shown that capsaicin — the “kick” in chili peppers — can speed up metabolism by up to 25 percent for up to three hours after consumption. Other hot peppers, like jalapeños or habañeros, have the same effect, and so adding them to a salsa recipe can help burn more calories and fat. Even mild salsa has benefits as a great source of vitamin A and C and is an easy way to get an extra serving of vegetables.
- Eggs – Yes, you read that right, eggs. There is a misconception that eating only egg whites is best, but half of the protein in an egg is found in the yolk. Proteins can stimulate the release of the hormone glucagon that aids in fat burning and actually keeps belly fat at bay. Starting your day with protein can keep you feeling fuller longer, so you’re less likely to snack mid-morning. That doesn’t mean you should have fried eggs, bacon and toast every morning. But one hard-boiled egg a few times a week for breakfast or a snack can kick-start your day!
- Raw Almonds – almonds are superior quality nuts that are rich in vitamin E, an antioxidant that counteracts free-radical damage. Not only are almonds good for your hair and skin, they’re also rich in magnesium and vitamin B2, which help calm nerves and combat stress. When you’re stressed out, cortisol is released in the body and causes weight gain. The B2 vitamin in almonds helps reduce stress, while boosting your energy levels.
- Chia Seeds – If you haven’t tried these powerful little seeds yet, you should. Rich in omega-3 fatty acids, calcium, and iron, chia seeds are great for weight loss because they act like a sponge, absorbing sugar and stabilizing blood sugar levels. They are extremely high in fiber and can hold up to twenty times their weight in water, so when they’re mixed with liquid they plump up and absorb excess moisture. Add them to your oatmeal or smoothie and they will help you feel fuller longer, making you less likely to snack.