Eat up to slim down. Not only are these foods tasty and satisfying, they include a slew of foods that research has shown may help you shed pounds. Stock your kitchen with these eats for easy diet success.
These filling, snackable bites can help keep your blood sugar steady. A study from the University of Toronto found that people who ate almonds with white bread didn't experience the same blood sugar surges as those who ate just the slice. And the higher blood sugar levels rise, the lower they fall; that dip leads to hunger, causing people to overeat. Plus, blood sugar changes cause the body to make insulin, which can increase abdominal fat. Eat almonds on their own, or in almond-butter form.
An apple a day can keep weight gain at bay, finds a study from Penn State University at University Park. People who chomped an apple before a pasta meal ate fewer calories overall than those who had a different snack. Credit their high-fiber status—4 to 5 g each—which fills you up. Plus, the antioxidants in apples may help prevent metabolic syndrome, a condition marked by excess belly fat or an "apple shape."
According to data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, bean eaters weigh less and have slimmer middles. Beans are super fat fighters because they contain the ideal combination of fat-busting nutrients—soluble and insoluble fiber, protein, and a type of fat-burning carb called resistant starch.
Cauliflower is also a vitamin C standout: Just 1/2 cup nets you 36 percent of your daily needs. Plus, this cruciferous veggie is a proven cancer fighter—it's been linked to a lower risk of colorectal, lung and stomach cancers. And like almost all veggies, cauliflower is low in calories while still offering filling fiber. This veggie is also super versatile and can make a great replacement for heavier foods. Try cauliflower roasted until crispy as a side dish to burgers or sandwiches, mashed up with a little trans-fat-free margarine to mimic mashed potatoes, or pureed and added to soups instead of cream.
Everything is nice about this spice. Just 1/2 teaspoon each day can help control your blood sugar and prevent the postmeal insulin spike that can trigger your body to store fat rather than burn it. You can also use cinnamon to bring out the natural sweetness in foods, rather than adding calories from sugar. All spices help you trim down when used to add flavor to foods instead of oil, butter and calorie-laden condiments.
Raise your mug to higher metabolism! The caffeine in coffee can raise your resting metabolic rate by about 15 percent, and the effect can last up to four hours—that adds up to 30 to 50 calories burned per day. Plus, people who sip 3 to 4 cups of regular or decaf coffee per day are 30 percent less prone to type 2 diabetes. Chlorogenic acid, found in coffee, may help prevent insulin resistance, which can lead to obesity and diabetes.