Losing those pesky and unwanted pounds after a big holiday of eating and drinking is probably high on your New Year’s resolutions list. And while you have some idea of what you should be eating, mixing the right foods together and balancing everything on the food pyramid can be stressful and overwhelming. Unfortunately, no food will magically make you lose weight — but if you know the best foods for fat-burning, you may just be one step ahead of the game.
In fact, some foods can keep your cravings at bay while others boost your metabolism and make it work faster and harder. Foods that are high in fiber, protein, and healthy fats break down faster than sugar (no surprises there), so it’s best to drop the doughnut and pick up something nutritious instead!
1. Chili Peppers
That burst of heat you feel after eating a spicy curry is all down to capsaicin, a component of chili peppers that has metabolism-boosting properties.
2. Green Tea
Green tea contains almost no calories and is also high in catechins, which may assist with weight loss. No wonder it’s a hit with celebrities like Jennifer Aniston, who drinks green tea throughout the day.
A recent US study found that eating yogurt before a meal may be a feasible strategy to improve post-meal metabolism.
4. Whey Protein
Adding a dash of whey protein to your next smoothie may influence the release of the hormone cholecystokinin, which reduces appetite and increases feelings of satiety after a meal.
5. Olive Oil
Olive oil contains aromatic compounds, which may slow the absorption of glucose into the bloodstream — preventing the kind of sugar crashes that often lead to increased snacking.
6. Nut Butter
While peanut butter is relatively high in calories, it also contains protein, fiber, and healthy fats. Not to mention, studies have found it may play a role in boosting your metabolic rate.
While all kinds of fish are great for weight loss, tuna and salmon are high in omega-3 fatty acids, which may help switch off belly fat genes. What’s not to love?
Studies suggest turmeric may aid weight loss by blocking fat cells from forming and expanding, while also making your cells better at energy metabolism.
Quinoa is packed with nutrients and has a low GI — meaning slower rises in blood sugar and increased feelings of fullness after a meal.
Studies have found that simply sniffing grapefruit can curb your appetite, while compounds in the fruit may also help your body burn calories more effectively.
Raspberries, which are low in calories and packed with vitamin C, get their signature scent from ketones, chemical compounds that may potentially help with the breakdown of fat.
12. Leafy Greens
Veggies like spinach, broccoli, and brussels sprouts are high in phytochemicals, which are linked to numerous health benefits including weight loss.
The monounsaturated and oleic fatty acids in avocado oil may help reduce abdominal fat.
Eating a diet full of high-protein foods like eggs may help you burn an extra 80 to 100 calories a day. No wonder egg-white omelettes are a celebrity staple!
One CSIRO study found that dieters who consumed dairy food or supplements lost an extra three pounds of fat mass compared to participants who did not.
This article was originally written by Now to Love editors. For more, check out our sister site, Now to Love.