‘My life is over!’ cried a teary eyed Mihika as she looked at her reflection in the mirror, noticing a visible increment in her waist size. Most of us have this issue sometime or the other in life: The worry of having gained excess weight.
Don’t over react. Check your Body Mass Index (BMI) and then judge if you are overweight or not. Simply being paranoid and ‘feeling fat’ has never helped anybody. Also, do not stress out or be depressed about it. Along with exercise, a healthy lifestyle and sufficient amount of sleep, losing weight the healthy way also involves eating the right food. By this, I do not mean starving or surviving on liquid diets and a hundred other things that the internet promises faithfully with desired results. Trust me, most of the crash diets never work, even if they do, it is the unhealthy and probably dangerous way to do it. There are some really powerful foods that can help boost gradual and healthy weight loss.
1. Apples: Not only does an apple a day keep the doctor away, apples also keep extra kilos away. The low sugar content of apples keeps you full enough but does not add extra glycogen. Antioxidants present in apples help in increasing body metabolism and prevent the ‘Apple Metabolism’ which causes fat accumulation around the abdomen.
2. Black beans: Proteins are the building blocks of tissue, more importantly muscle. Black beans contain a large amount and variety of amino acids that make up proteins and is free from the fat that other protein sources like red meat contain.
3. Oats: Oats is one of the best breakfast choices ever. Packed with a lot of fiber, it keeps you feeling full throughout the day and thus, you don’t feel like munching on other non-healthy food stuff. The presence of resistant starch, a healthy polysaccharide that boosts metabolism as well as burns fat is an added bonus. Antioxidants and minerals add to the goodness.
4. Mixed grains: Having bread or roti with mixed grains adds bulk, fiber and roughage to the diet, all of which helps in slimming down. Bajra, ragi ,makke ka aata, chane ka aata, etc. are the preferred combination, along with wheat flour.
5. Almonds: These nuts are full of healthy fats. We need a regular supply of fats in our diet for a healthy metabolism so that the glucose circulating in blood is not converted to adipose tissue (read: fat). These healthy fats in almonds help us shed fat. Almonds can be used as snacks in between meals as well as during craving attacks.
6. Low fat milk: Healthy fatty acids are packed in skimmed or low fat milk. Calcium is the added benefit.
7. Brown rice: Brown rice is the healthier version of the regular white rice. This is due to its low starch content. During processing, brown rice is boiled and dried, draining away much of the original starch in the rice grains. It is known to fight bad cholesterol and has ample amounts of resistant starch the Good Samaritan carbohydrate that fights fat.
8. Quinoa: Rich in hunger fighting proteins, quinoa is the latest addition to the diet planner’s chart. What’s more, it has a low amount of calories but keeps you feeling full too.
9. Salmon: Salmon is full of lean protein and has no added fats. It is also MUFA rich and has Omega-3-fatty acids.
10. Papaya: This fruit is like Manna Dew! It is packed with Vitamins, anti-oxidants and a boat load of good enzymes. Papain, an enzyme is a fat hydrolyser and breaks down complex lipids. It helps in liver functioning as well which means that glycogen to glucose conversion is easier and faster when the body requires ready energy due to a fit metabolic rate. Papaya is so good with boosting body metabolism and fighting lipids that its enzymes are even being produced via recombinant DNA technology to artificially produce medicinal enzymes.
11. Broccoli: Boiled or blanched, this vegetable is rich in fiber, keeps you satiated for a long time and has less than 30 calories and is known for its cancer-preventing properties. What more could you want?
12. Dark chocolate: For all the chocoholics out there, rejoicing time is here! Chocolate is one of the most complex food stuffs on the planet and contains more than 2,000 different chemicals. Rich in Monounsaturated Fatty Acids (MUFA), 5gms of dark chocolate a day can enhance your metabolism and prevent craving for sweet, salty and oily diet-plan wrecking culprits.
13. Oranges: No, not the sugary carton sealed fruit juice. The real fruit, along with its rich fibers which help regulate blood glucose levels. Vitamin C keeps your body at its optimum functioning state.
14. Green tea: Antioxidant rich, this beverage is great for people trying to lose fat. The chemical family of compounds called Catechins boost metabolism and helps burn calories faster.
15. Olive oil: Olive oil is the best choice of fat that you can incorporate in your diet after nuts. Good fats, healthy MUFA and many more advantages make it a good option when trying to shed excess weight.
Many more foods like avocados, flax seeds, blueberries, etc. are known to have such benefits. Honestly, there are no magical superfoods that will slim you down overnight. However, mixing the right variety of food in your diet along with a healthy lifestyle will accelerate your body’s metabolism which in turn, helps you burn calories faster. Lesser the calories stored, lesser kilos piled on. When the rate of consumption increases the rate of accumulation of calories, you lose weight. Go on, make your mix of food and become slim and stay that way.