Updated: Sep 23
We have all heard that diet and exercise can aid in weight loss. However, did you know there are certain foods that help burn calories? These foods can help you reach your fat loss goal more quickly than others.
Are There Foods That Help Burn Calories? Top Choices For a Healthy Lifestyle
We have all heard that diet and exercise can aid in losing weight. However, did you know there are certain foods that help burn calories? These foods can help you reach your fat loss goal more quickly than others. In this situation, selecting fat-burning foods over unhealthy food choices is ultimate goal.
Below, we discuss which fat-burning foods can aid in helping you lose weight.
What Are Foods That Burn Calories?
According to WebMD|*|, certain foods can help boost metabolism, thus allowing you to avoid weight gain. For example, consuming fresh produce provides a low-calorie way of adding fiber to your diet.
Adding fiber helps your digestive system work more smoothly, which in turn helps keep your metabolism high as it takes less energy to digest fruits and vegetables. Fiber also aids in keeping you feel full for longer, so you’re less tempted to snack on unhealthy items.
While coconut oil is often associated with hair and skin care, it serves another purpose in the culinary world. This oil can potentially lead to a decrease in weight and aid in improving metabolism, according to this 2020 study. |*|
During this study, overweight men consumed one tablespoon of coconut oil daily in combination with a balanced diet. The study provided a positive association between coconut oil and weight loss.
Tip: Consider adding a tablespoon of coconut oil into your diet to aid in reducing weight. To easily incorporate this food, you can mix a tablespoon into your coffee each morning.
Avocado is a great source of healthy fat, specifically monounsaturated fat. According to Medical News Today, avocado offers multiple health benefits, from potentially decreasing arthritis to a possible reduction in blood cholesterol. It also can aid in weight loss, especially since consuming this fruit does not make blood sugar levels spike. |*|
This fruit is also full of other essential vitamins and nutrients like fiber, vitamin B, vitamin K, and potassium, to name a few. This inclusion of vitamins makes avocado an excellent choice for an addition to your diet while maintaining your blood sugar levels.
Tip: Avocado is an easy-to-add option. Include a few slices on your breakfast plate, make avocado toast, blend avocado into your breakfast smoothie, or add a dollop of guacamole to meals.
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Green tea is considered to be one of the best fat-burning foods available. Green tea contains a specific antioxidant (epigallocatechin gallate), which has been shown to help burn fat and reduce fat cells. |*|
According to this 2018 study, a group of men who took green tea extract before a workout was better able to burn fat than those who took a placebo. |*| It may be beneficial to begin adding in green tea extract or drinking a cup of green tea before working out to burn fat and reduce fat cells.
Refreshing Green Tea Blends [*]:
Tip: Brew a cup of green tea to help boost your metabolism throughout the day. You can even use it as a replacement for coffee, as it contains caffeine. Since it contains caffeine, you’ll want to avoid drinking green tea too late in the day.
Salmon is an excellent source of omega-3s (healthy fats), which potentially can help suppress appetite and may even help increase fat-burning benefits in the body. Thus, possibly helping to lower the body fat percentage, according to this study. |*|
This 2015 study also notes that omega-3 may also aid in reducing belly fat. |*| Those seeking to lessen their belly fat and overall body fat may want to consider incorporating more salmon into their diet.
Tip: If you're uncertain about incorporating this food into your diet, consider baking a filet and pairing it with carbs and veggies for a more filling meal and fat-burning benefits.
Surprisingly, you can still eat tasty foods while burning some extra fat, such as dark chocolate. Dark chocolate contains polyphenols, which have been shown to aid in reducing the risk of diabetes type 2 and heart disease. |*|
According to this 2013 study conducted on obese animals |*|, there may be a positive correlation between dark chocolate and a reduction in fat absorption. It's also possible that consuming dark chocolate can lead to more satiety, according to the same study.
Tip: Eat dark chocolate with fruit to help boost your fiber intake. This combo helps you feel full and satiated, so you’re less likely to overeat the chocolate.
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Adding Greek yogurt to your diet is a delicious way to encourage weight loss and add an array of nutrients to your diet; this is especially true for full-fat varieties. Dairy, in combination with protein, can aid in fat loss and help you feel satiated for longer, according to research. |*|
Full-fat Greek yogurt (not low-fat or non-fat) contains conjugated linoleic acid, an essential fatty acid. This fatty acid can potentially promote weight loss in individuals, based on multiple studies conducted. |*||*|
Tip: Add Greek yogurt to smoothies to aid in your health journey. The creamy consistency helps produce a rich-tasting smoothie that will help you stay full until your next meal.
Healthiest Greek Yogurt [*]:
Adding broccoli to your meals each day can be a great way to help boost weight loss. These cruciferous vegetables are chock-full of fiber, which, as noted above, aids in keeping you feeling full for longer.
Broccoli is also a fantastic source of calcium, which can aid in weight loss. According to this study, obese patients who incorporated calcium into their diet saw increased weight loss in men and women. |*|
Tip: Avoid adding more calories by stir-frying broccoli with olive oil. Try steaming it, instead. Adding seasoning to broccoli will aid in creating a tasty side dish for lunch or dinner.
Snacking on nuts is an excellent way to boost your polyunsaturated fat intake and add protein and fiber to your diet. This combination of protein, fiber, and fat will help you stay full between meals when adding nutrient-rich nuts to your meal plan. |*|
Eating nuts can also potentially aid in you losing weight. According to this 2019 study, those who consumed nuts were associated with a lower body weight regardless of which type of diet they consumed (omnivore, vegan, vegetarian). |*|
As this food is high in fat, it's necessary to be mindful of how much you're consuming, as it can be easy to eat too much of this higher-calorie snack. Consider how you're feeling as you're eating nuts for a snack, and stop when you feel satisfied.
Tip: You can easily add nuts to your diet by enjoying a handful between meals. Alternatively, you can add a small handful to Greek yogurt for breakfast or as a filling snack, increasing satiety.
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Apple Cider Vinegar
While apple cider vinegar is touted as a fix for weight loss due to an ancient folk remedy, some science-backed evidence shows that apple cider vinegar may very well help you in your journey to reduce your weight.
Apple cider vinegar contains a compound known as acetic acid, which has been connected to weight loss in several animal studies. These studies also showed a connection between consuming acetic acid and a potential change in fat storage in the liver and stomachs of rats. |*|
According to this 2009 study, men who consumed two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar daily saw an improvement in BMI, body weight, and waist circumference. |*|
Tip: Most people consume apple cider vinegar by mixing it with water to dilute the flavor. Alternatively, you can combine it with olive oil to create a flavorful salad dressing.
Blueberries are one of the top foods for burning fat, especially abdominal fat. According to this 2019 study conducted on rats, blueberries were able to aid in weight maintenance while potentially helping your gut health. Additionally, these rats also saw a decrease in fat. |*|
These berries also contain fiber, vitamin C, and vitamin K, making them a nutrient-dense food that you'll want to add to your diet. As mentioned, fiber will help you feel full for longer, so you can continue without feeling the need to snack or eat until later than normal. This satiety may help reduce snacking between meals on unhealthy items (like processed foods).
Tip: Add blueberries into a smoothie with avocado for a double-dose of foods that help burn calories. You can also consume blueberries as a midday snack or on top of oatmeal.
Final Thoughts on Foods That Burn Calories
The above foods that burn calories are relatively easy to find in the grocery store, making them convenient options to add to your diet. When in doubt, select fiber-rich foods, like fresh produce, to help stay full for longer.
As always, consult your doctor before proceeding with any major diet changes.
While curating a healthy lifestyle, consider adding a Fitness and Weight Loss Journal to help keep you accountable. By seeing how far you’ve come, you can maintain motivation to continue your journey toward your health and fitness goals.