If losing weight is your goal, these are the 5 foods to support your healthy weight-loss journey. Most people are tempted to cut calories, but eating too little can backfire and take longer to lose weight. Eating too few calories leads to your body breaking down its own muscle and organ tissues for fuel. And, the less lean tissue mass you have, the slower your metabolic rate, which is not ideal for weight loss. So instead of restricting calories, focus on feeding your body healthier foods—it’s a more sustainable weight loss strategy. Here are 5 key foods to stock in your fridge to lose weight.
I always have eggs on hand- they are your secret weapon for weight loss. Why? The egg whites themselves are low calorie and high in protein, and they digest easily. You get a big bang for your buck with egg whites! One large egg white has only 18 calories and 4 grams of protein. You can have a high volume of them and feel satiated and full for a long time. The protein in eggs may also boost metabolism. Not only that, they are inexpensive and easy to prepare. I use my instapot to hard boil them (best recipe and the surefire way to easily get the shells off!). Don’t be afraid of the yolk, either! One whole egg is the ultimate multivitamin- a good source of several B vitamins and immune-supporting nutrients, like zinc and selenium.
Research has shown that a higher protein (rather than a standard intake) diet can help with weight loss and other health benefits. The study highlights evidence that a higher protein intake may help prevent metabolic syndrome, obesity, type 2 diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. It’s recommended that The average adult should have 0.8 to 1.0 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight. The key to eating healthy lean meats is buying the right cut. Some of the healthiest lean meats include:
- Chicken breasts (skinless)
- Ground turkey (99%) or turkey loins
- Lean red meat (grass-fed lean ground beef, top sirloin, our round steak)
- Pork (boneless or tenderloin)
Have big batches of lean meats prepped and ready to go to salads, wraps, and bowls. Use your instapot or crockpot and make at least 3 to 5 pounds of meat. There are all sorts of easy recipes that are quick and super. One of my favorites is Chris Powell’s salsa verde ranch chicken is the best!
Make sure you pair your proteins with good carbs like sweet potatoes. I have carbs earlier in the day, so I feel full and limit snacking. If anybody is telling you that you shouldn’t have carbs or you’re considering going lower than 10% of calories from carbs (less than 50 g per day), proceed with caution. Avoiding healthy carb-containing foods long-term is not a good idea. Sweet potatoes are a fantastic food! They are high in fiber and water content, so they’ll keep you full for longer and potentially reduce your overall food intake. There are a million ways to incorporate sweet potatoes into your diet- stuff them, bake French fries, or make them into zoodles. Healthy Food Addiction has an easy and great-tasting recipe for sweet potato french fries (plus, she shows you how to cut them like perfect French fries).
Fresh and Frozen Veggies
High-volume eating is a key weight loss hack and having veggies on hand is a simple way to eat more food for fewer calories. And, when vegetables are out, you’ll eat them- mark my words! You don’t have to break the bank on vegetables, too. Go into your grocery store and look at the end caps for veggies on sale or buy frozen ones. Not a vegetable fan? Trying hiding them in soups or smoothies or spice them up with Jane salt or Bragg’s nutritional yeast (another secret weapon to amp up protein and flavor).
Invest in quality protein powder. Protein is one of the most critical nutrients for weight loss. Studies show that eating a higher protein intake can reduce hunger and boost metabolism. Using protein powder as a meal replacement or incorporating powders into snacks can make it easy to increase your protein intake, minimize your cravings, and reduce overeating. Most protein powders contain magnesium, calcium, iron, and other essential vitamins for a balanced diet. I love the brand Beverly UMP whey protein powder, especially the cookies and cream flavor. Protein powder is super versatile too. Try making protein ice cream (poke around the Protein Chef’s website- lots of great higher protein recipes) or protein powder mug cake. With these options, the cool thing is that you can improvise based on what you like and what you have on hand. Get creative!