If you prefer the more natural route, when it comes to weight loss, we have good news – science shows certain plants possess beneficial properties that make them superfoods!
While none of these additions will provide automatic results, incorporating one or more of them into your diet may prove beneficial for your waist and your overall health.
Plus, they’ll add some delicious flavor to your meals! So, here are seven natural weight-loss foods to mix up your meal plan this week!
Ginger is one of the most studied foods for weight loss and also one of the most potentially beneficial.
This powerhouse root has been shown to decrease the risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and more. Many of these alluring benefits come from ginger’s antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
By combating free radicals and inflammation, ginger may promote healthier levels of blood sugar and cholesterol while also lowering blood pressure and promoting liver health.
On top of that, some studies also indicate that ginger speeds up calorie burn and suppresses hunger. So, if you’re interested in natural weight loss, this root is a superfood.
For an extra bonus, ginger may also help you recover from overdoing it with exercise. The root has been suggested to help relieve muscle soreness (including menstrual cramps) and nausea.
If you don’t love the taste of ginger, don’t worry. These benefits are thought to come from eating it in your food, as a powder, or as a natural weight loss supplement – whichever you prefer.
Like always, if you’re considering adding it as a supplement, make sure to check with your doctor and pharmacist first.
It’s not yet known how much ginger you need to eat daily (in food) to achieve these benefits, but research certainly indicates that adding some tang to your cookies, chicken, or vegetables couldn’t hurt!
This golden spice has received a lot of buzz lately, both for weight loss and well-being in general. Its main benefit is also as an anti-inflammatory antioxidant.
While it won’t help you lose weight directly, this colorful powder can help alleviate some classic complications of obesity. For example, like ginger, turmeric may help regulate blood pressure and glucose.
Interestingly, turmeric has also been shown to slow weight gain in mice. When supplemented with turmeric, mice were more resistant to weight gain.
Although this effect has not yet been studied in humans, turmeric may be something to consider if you’re looking to maintain weight loss long-term.
Still, as with all supplements, you should always speak to your doctor before adding a turmeric pill to your daily routine.
Turmeric should be approached with caution when taken in the quantities used for natural weight loss supplements because it can negatively interact with other medications, including blood thinners and diabetes medication.
Thankfully, normal dietary levels of turmeric are basically risk-free. Traditionally used in curry, this spice pairs well with tomatoes, chicken, and squash.
Cayenne Pepper (Chili Peppers)
Some people add peppers or hot sauce to their food for flavor, but research shows that adding a little heat to your meal may also help with weight loss!
Capsaicin, the spicy ingredient in chili peppers, has been shown to help people eat less and burn more calories. Research shows that adding chili peppers (or chili pepper) to your food decreases intake and curbs cravings, especially if you don’t usually eat a lot of spicy food.
The capsaicin also boosts metabolism and helps you burn more calories through its thermogenic properties. The chemical heats your body, and then your metabolism responds by speeding up to bring the body temperature back down to normal.
Cayenne pepper is powdered chili pepper, so it’s one of the most popular ways for people to add capsaicin to their food.
This red powder is a popular addition to meats, chicken, fish, vegetables, soups – most anything you like with zing.
Adding just half a teaspoon of cayenne to your meal can give you these positive results, but be careful with the heat! Eating too much capsicum in food can cause GI distress from the spice.
Not a fan of (or can’t handle) spicy food? Don’t worry! The above studies showed positive results both when subjects added peppers to their food and when they took it as a supplement before eating.
So if spiciness isn’t your thing, consider a natural weight loss supplement that contains cayenne or capsaicin to give your metabolism that extra boost!
Sold as both whole seeds and as a powder, cumin is a common savory spice in Mexican, Indian, and Middle Eastern cuisine.
Its nutty flavor entices chefs to add it to soups and stews, but research shows you may want to add a dash of cumin for natural weight loss as well.
When compared to a control group, overweight and obese women that ate one teaspoon of cumin per day for three months lost about 30% more weight.
The cumin-eaters also saw significant drops in their body fat percentage and triglycerides. This leads scientists to believe that cumin may be a highly effective spice for natural weight loss.
If you’re wondering how to incorporate more cumin into your diet, consider making a homemade taco seasoning, sprinkling it on roasted veggies, or adding a dash to veggie or bean soups.
Italian food lovers rejoice! We’ve long added garlic to bread, pasta, and pizza to add a punch of flavor, and now research shows that this nutritional powerhouse may promote weight loss as well.
This is not surprising given that many cultures have regarded garlic as curative for thousands of years. Research how indicates that garlic could speed metabolism (similar to cayenne) and therefore increase calorie burn.
The strong flavor may also play a role in suppressing appetite to help you eat less and resist cravings in the first place. If that’s not enough, garlic is also praised for its ability to help bolster immunity, fight inflammation, and even slow bacterial growth.
Traditional garlic bread is delicious but maybe not the healthiest choice for your nightly dinner table. Instead, try sautéing your vegetables or lean proteins in olive oil and garlic.
To maximize the health benefits of this ingredient, let it sit out for 10-15 minutes after chopping (or crushing) so that the plant’s protective chemicals can activate before cooking.
Green tea has become hugely popular in recent years for its health benefits related to weight loss, longevity, and heart health. The good news is science supports this health craze.
The main antioxidant in green tea is epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), which helps boost metabolism and encourage fat breakdown.
EGCC indirectly increases fat breakdown on a cellular level so that more fat is broken down and used as energy by the body.
Green tea has also been suggested to boost metabolic rate and may suppress appetite, making it the perfect addition to your weight loss journey.
Just make sure you don’t overdo it on the add-ins (sugar, milk, honey, etc.) to avoid making this healthy drink into a caloric concoction.
You can either drink tea as a beverage or take green tea extract in supplement form.
Many of the studies surrounding this chemical have been conducted with supplements as opposed to tea, so taking a natural weight loss supplement could be a great option if you’re not too keen on green tea’s flavor.
Still, remember to check with your doctor first.
Last but not least: cinnamon! We often add cinnamon to sweet treats, fruit, or coffee for flavor, but it may do more than just please our taste buds.
The main benefit of cinnamon is that it can help regulate blood sugar, both immediately after and between meals.
Some research also suggests that cinnamon may slow gastric emptying, or how fast food moves from your stomach to your intestine. If food stays in your stomach for longer, you’ll stay full for longer and be less tempted to grab an unplanned snack.
Like most of these foods, cinnamon can be consumed as a tasty addition to your daily meals or as a natural weight loss supplement.
About 0.5-1 teaspoon of cinnamon a day is enough to reap these benefits, so adding a generous sprinkle to your yogurt, cereal, smoothie, or fruit salad should do the trick!
If you’d rather take a supplement, check with your doctor – especially if you have diabetes or liver disease. Consuming too much cinnamon, especially Cassia cinnamon, can cause or worsen liver damage.
Do you add certain spices to your food, or take natural weight loss supplements, to help you shed extra weight? Share your experience with us in the comments section below!