Do you know which foods do the most to stoke your metabolism and keep your body burning fat after and in between your workouts?
For many years, the popular diet prescription was to avoid all fat to improve health. Recent studies have shed light on selective fat intake as the true ‘best practice’ when it comes to healthy dieting. What this means is recognizing the difference between healthy and unhealthy fats.
The focus of this article is foods that help you to burn body fat, but it’s critical to understand that some of these foods are in fact rich in healthy fats, and that’s okay.
Achieving a healthy balance of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids helps your body build muscle, maintain strength for your good workout routines.In addition, these healthy fats are critical for brain function, fighting the natural inflammation from training and fueling your body’s functions. The foods listed below will help you keep your body fueled for intense training and are focused on cutting body fat and how to get lean and achieve the strong, athletic appearance you desire.
Your Fat Burning Foods List…
Almonds, Macadamia And Other Tree Nuts
The best choice here is raw and organic without the salt. Nuts are a perfectly balanced meal containing healthy fat, protein and carbohydrates. Nuts make an excellent snack to keep in your bag or car to reduce hunger cravings and provide a balanced meal on the go. If the raw organic option doesn’t do it for your taste buds, try adding your own seasoning like cayenne and garlic.
Protip: adding a half of a teaspoon of olive oil to the nuts and mixing will help your seasoning stick.
Greek yogurt is loaded with protein and stokes your metabolism. It’s not big on flavor so consider adding berries or honey for a natural sweetener. The calcium in greek yogurt is also great for your bones and overall yogurt is helpful for digestion. It’s also considered one of the best muscle building foods.
Eggs are a superfood. Common yes, but in recent years, studies have come to illustrate that eggs are no longer considered a cholesterol risk for active peoples. Also, keep in mind that while many athletes choose to consume egg whites or predominantly egg whites, many of the vitamins are in the egg yolk. Don’t go too crazy into bacon and egg diet just yet, learn more about eggs.
Turkey, chicken breast and other lean meats
If your goal is to build a muscular, strong body, the simple fact is turkey and other lean meats are critical to your diet. These protein packed foods for building muscle, strengthen your immune system and support size and strength gains.
Blueberries, strawberries, acai and others are the best fruits for your body. They contain less sugar than others and are packed full of anti-oxidants. Berries are the best use of your daily sugar allowances and will keep you healthy, as well as prevent hunger cravings.
Peanut butter is a great before bed snack as it provides a lasting protein supply and digests slowly. Interestingly, peanut butter is also known for naturally boosting testosterone levels. Combine that with helping burn fat and peanut butter is a can’t miss.
Fatty fish (yellowtail, salmon, tuna, mackerel)
Fatty fish are loaded with omega-3 fatty acids and packed with protein. This combo triggers the feelings of fullness while fueling fat burning.
Grapefruit has long been hailed as one of the best diet foods known as the grapefruit diet for its ability to regulate blood sugar and improve metabolism. Grapefruit even lowers insulin so basically if you’re trying to cut weight and improve blood sugar levels, this is an essential food to keep in the house.
You might be wondering how much green tea should you drink or is it really that good?Green tea is packed full of anti-oxidants and stokes your metabolism. However, it’s important to know that green tea requires you to drink 4-6 cups to really achieve the anti-oxidant effect. Green tea helps regulate your hunger too because of the mild caffeine content and it helps you focus because of its theanine content.
Not only are spicy peppers delicious, but they are excellent for your metabolism. The capsaicin in hot peppers stokes a bodily response that has been shown to be beneficial to the immune system and keeps your metabolism torching—just don’t overdo it. There’s an old holistic cold remedy that involves eating a raw habanero pepper to stoke up the immune system. Whether you believe in that or not, chili peppers have been eaten for thousands of years.
Kale and Spinach
These nutrient dense muscle building vegetables are essential to any diet for a variety of reasons but are essential to those looking to burn fat. The vitamins contained in leafy vegetables do a great deal to sate hunger and leave the body fulfilled with the nutrients that it truly needs. In addition, these vegetables are key to fighting free radicals and improve the body’s recovery functions.
Whole Grains (Quinoa, Brown Rice)
When it comes to carbohydrates, the only time that you should be consuming starchy carbs is immediately post workout. At those times, high glycemic load carbs are essential to fueling protein synthesis. For any other time when you are in need of carbohydrates to balance out a meal, you want to go for whole grains. Quinoa is actually the best option as it is a non-glutinous grain and therefore is the least inflammatory option among the whole grain options. These are also known for helping to prevent storing of body fat.
Beans And Legumes
There are some diets that restrict any consumption of beans because they require a fair amount of cooking and processing to become digestible by the human body. Others argue that humans haven’t been eating beans as long as other foods and therefore our bodies aren’t as adapted to digesting these foods. However, if you are actively trying to build muscle and limit your meat intake, beans are your best bet. These protein-rich foods can provide critical nutrients from a natural source.
Whey Protein Powder
No surprises here. Whey protein supplies your body with critical nutrients after workouts and between meals. This is a critical dietary addition in your path to achieving a lean, strong body. Check out our very own Gym Junkies Protein Powder found here.
Adding the right foods to your diet and selecting healthy fats are essential to your overall progress as an athlete. If you want to burn body fat, as much as you might have been told to limit all fats, the right path is selecting healthy fats and consuming balanced meals consisting of healthy fat, protein and carbohydrates. Adding nutrient dense green vegetables, anti-oxidant rich berries, low glycemic index carbohydrates has a number of benefits beyond burning fat.
Every addition to your diet based on the foods listed today can improve various other holes in your diet and bulletproof your immune system. One of the major side effects of weight training is inflammation; by adding healthy omega-3’s you can battle inflammation and burn body fat.
With each meal you eat, you make choices about the effects these foods will have on your body. It’s not enough to train hard in the gym; your recovery and diet are the biggest determinants in the efficiency of your training program. If you want results, you have to equally value your time in the gym and your time in the kitchen and in your bed, sleeping. Train hard, eat clean and rest up.
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Good article. I am still trying to figure out how to eat healthy and wise. On-going struggle for me