There is tons of information out there about foods that burn fat. But sometimes, it’s really weird and rare food that you wouldn’t even know what to do with or pills that are both expensive and, well, they are pills! Thankfully, there are lots of foods that you likely already have in your kitchen, making natural fat-burning meals easier to make. Here are 15 fat-burning foods to help you melt away fat while enjoying your food.
Milk—If you have to eat Cocoa Puffs, at least drench them in plenty of skim milk. The calcium signals your metabolism to wake up! One study found that dieters who consumed at least 1,200 mg of calcium per day lost twice as much weight as those who consumed less. And milk is actually a complex carbohydrate, meaning it stabilizes insulin levels after your meal.
Whole Grain Cereal—a complex carb and high in fiber, whole grain cereal is a powerful force when it comes to keeping insulin levels low. Low insulin levels are a signal to your body to expend more calories and pump up your metabolism.
Coffee—do you ever feel your heart race after an espresso shot? That’s actually a good thing as far as fat-burning goes. When your heart speeds up, you burn more calories. You’ll get this benefit from any coffee drink. But it’s probably best to stay away from those ultra sugary, creamy beverages. That just counteracts the fat-burning force.
Green Tea—if you’re trying to avoid coffee breath, get your pick-me-up with Green Tea. This not only speeds up your system- helping you burn more calories, but it actually speeds up your brain!
Oatmeal—you may associate this with your grandfather’s breakfast but hey, he’s probably watching his health more than anyone! Oatmeal breaks down slowly in your stomach, once again keeping those testy insulin levels low. It’s also an incredible source of fiber, which helps regulate the digestive system, minimizing those yucky, bloated days.
Tuna—Tuna has been shown to reduce levels of a hormone called leptin, and lower levels of leptin can help speed up metabolism. Tuna is also rich in the brain-friendly fatty acid Omega-3, which can increase the rate at which your body burns calories. Grab a stack of canned Tuna next time you’re at the store. It’s so easy to whip up a tuna salad to put on whole grain bread or in a salad.
Jalapenos— Jalapenos contain capsaicin, a chemical that speeds up metabolism and heart rate—I know you feel that when you’re sweating through your nachos. These also taste great diced up fresh in a salad, or even sliced in your favorite sandwich. Try adding these with low-fat cheddar cheese to a tuna sandwich for a spicy tuna melt.
RECIPE: Skinny Detox Guacamole… Yes.
Sardines—Swapping out just 6 grams of fat with 6 grams of fish oil daily can help you lose an average of 2 pounds per week, according to a French study. And you know we are always wondering how the French stay so slim.
Chicken—try a skinless chicken breast to get all the protein and none of the added fat. Substituting just one fifth of your daily carbs with lean protein could help you burn 5% more calories daily.
Turkey—Another lean, low-fat source of metabolism-pumping protein. Avoid the slippery deli variety and get freshly sliced turkey breast or, better yet, a whole turkey. That way you can make turkey sandwiches and salads all week.
Cayenne Pepper—sprinkle it into a tuna or turkey salad. This spice is a little milder than the above mentioned jalapenos, so if you need to take it down a notch, this is your best bet. One study found that eating just one spicy meal per day can boost your metabolism by up to 25%, extending your body’s calorie expenditure up to 3 hours.
Pork—The option for your salad, fajitas…anything, is usually chicken or steak. But Pork should definitely be on there. It’s another great source of lean protein and the more protein you consume, the more energy your body expends trying to digest it. But this isn’t an excuse to run to your favorite barbeque spot. Try grilled, lean pork chops seasoned with herbs and other spices.
Salmon—a healthier barbeque alternative, salmon tastes great off the grill. Salmon also contains those famous Omega-3’s everyone is talking about, that can not only improve brain function and give you healthier skin, but also boost your body’s calorie-burning rate.
Lean Beef—Your body burns more calories digesting protein than it does digesting carbs or fat. If you’re making steak, be sure to cut away the fatty areas before cooking. For burgers, shell out a few extra bucks for ground sirloin rather than the usual ground chuck.
Habanero peppers—These are great sautéed with salmon or beef. I know we’re getting into very heated territory, but if you can take it, you could burn up to 1,000 more calories a day! That’s what happened to men who consumed this hot stuff as a snack in one study.