With diet playing such a central role in weight loss, eating smart can make all the difference. Tanking up on vegetables is a great way to ensure you get the nutrients your body needs while, at the same time, boosting your metabolism and burning through calories. Best picks include leafy greens, broccoli, cooked and cooled potatoes, red pepper, radish, cauliflower.
Getting your daily five of fresh fruit and vegetables is a great place to start if you’re on mission weight loss. But just eating vegetables randomly may not be enough – your choice of vegetables is just as important so you can balance nutrients with calories and weight-loss benefits.
Here’s your guide to vegetables that can really amp up your weight-loss regimen. These veggies do everything from detox your system, stimulate your digestive system, and boost your metabolism – so chow them down and get fit fast!
Grab Those Greens
If you are counting calories, turn toward green leafy vegetables that are packed with nutrition. For instance, kale, lettuce, and spinach clock in at under 10 calories for a cup full. So they’ll keep you feeling full and your body plied with nutrients without making a huge dent in your daily calorie allocation.1
Binge On Broccoli
Calcium- and vitamin-rich broccoli has lots going for it, not the least of which is its abundance of fiber. Research has confirmed the benefits of fiber-rich foods in getting your weight and cholesterol in check. Eating more fiber can keep you feeling full longer, cut your hunger, and subsequently cause you to eat less. One study confirmed this, showing how an increased intake of fiber was linked to a 10 percent decline in energy intake. It also caused some weight loss over 3.8 months.2 In addition, broccoli is a source of omega-3 fatty acids which play an important role in modulating your satiety. One study of obese and overweight volunteers confirmed the importance of this nutrient in postprandial satiety regulation and weight loss.3
Cry Out For Onions
Quercetin in the versatile onion can be a potent ally in the battle of the bulge. Working to regulate lipid metabolism, it could help lower fat accumulation in your liver. One animal study found that it was useful in preventing obesity arising from a high-fat diet.4
Cut Bloating With A Dose Of Cauliflower (Or Cabbage!)
Cruciferous vegetables like cauliflower and cabbage have plenty of roughage to help with regular bowel movements and avoid bloating.5 An average regular serving of cauliflower has about 77 percent of the vitamin C you need daily. It also gives you vitamin K, protein, minerals like manganese and potassium, and a range of B vitamins.6
No Seeing Red With These Peppers
Up your metabolism with your intake of red peppers. These vegetables contain dihydrocapsiate, a capsinoid that can increase fat metabolism – exactly what someone on a weight-loss plan needs. Studies have found its efficacy in abdominal fat loss and overall fat metabolism.7 Consuming capsaicinoids has been shown to increase your energy expenditure, resulting in weight loss over a period of time. However, this will need to be supplemented with an overall weight-loss plan as well.8 Plus, there’s also the fact that red peppers are loaded with carotenoids and antioxidants. So you’ll get in vitamins C and E while also giving your fat metabolism that kick-start.
Don’t Bid Potatoes Farewell
If you’re dreading a controlled food plan mainly because you fear that your favorite go-to vegetable, the potato, may be off the cards – don’t worry! Potatoes, when prepared and handled correctly, can be a great source of resistant starch (a non-digestible fermentable fiber) which can help with weight loss due to its bulking effect, resistance to being digested, and subsequent impact on abdominal fat and fat oxidation. If you chill cook potatoes in your refrigerator before you eat them in a fresh salad, you convert the starch from regular to resistant. And as researchers have found, resistant starch is actually a great natural route to battling obesity.9
Go Rah-Rah for Radishes!
Sulfur-rich radishes or daikon can help detox your system, keep your digestive system working well, and make your bowel movements regular – all of which are good for both weight loss and your metabolism. They are also a hearty choice, leaving you nice and full because of the fiber content. The best part is that the high water content and low levels of digestive carbohydrates in these vegetables can make them a dieter’s dream.10
References [ + ]
|1, 6.||↑||National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference Release 28, USDA.|
|2.||↑||Howarth, Nancy C., Edward Saltzman, and Susan B. Roberts. “Dietary fiber and weight regulation.” Nutrition reviews 59, no. 5 (2001): 129-139.|
|3.||↑||Parra, Dolores, Alfons Ramel, Narcisa Bandarra, Mairead Kiely, J. Alfredo Martínez, and Inga Thorsdottir. “A diet rich in long chain omega-3 fatty acids modulates satiety in overweight and obese volunteers during weight loss.” Appetite 51, no. 3 (2008): 676-680.|
|4.||↑||Jung, Chang Hwa, Iljin Cho, Jiyun Ahn, Tae‐Il Jeon, and Tae‐Youl Ha. “Quercetin reduces high‐fat diet‐induced fat accumulation in the liver by regulating lipid metabolism genes.” Phytotherapy Research 27, no. 1 (2013): 139-143.|
|5.||↑||Good foods to help your digestion, NHS UK.|
|7.||↑||Snitker, Soren, Yoshiyuki Fujishima, Haiqing Shen, Sandy Ott, Xavier Pi-Sunyer, Yasufumi Furuhata, Hitoshi Sato, and Michio Takahashi. “Effects of novel capsinoid treatment on fatness and energy metabolism in humans: possible pharmacogenetic implications.” The American journal of clinical nutrition 89, no. 1 (2009): 45-50.|
|8.||↑||Whiting, Stephen, Emma Derbyshire, and B. K. Tiwari. “Capsaicinoids and capsinoids. A potential role for weight management? A systematic review of the evidence.” Appetite 59, no. 2 (2012): 341-348.|
|9.||↑||Keenan, Michael J., Jun Zhou, Kathleen L. McCutcheon, Anne M. Raggio, H. Gale Bateman, Emily Todd, Christina K. Jones et al. “Effects of resistant starch, a non‐digestible fermentable fiber, on reducing body fat.” Obesity 14, no. 9 (2006): 1523-1534.|
|10.||↑||Gittleman, Ann Louise. Fat Flush for Life: The Year-round Super Detox Plan to Boost Your Metabolism and Keep the Weight Off Permanently. Da Capo Press, 2009.|