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The condition of obesity can result in a variety of chronic and severe illnesses and occurs when the BMI (Body Mass Index) goes beyond 30. One of the most common medical conditions affecting people worldwide today, obesity can cause diabetes, high blood pressure, heart diseases, stroke, osteoarthritis, some types of cancer, gout, gallstones, gallbladder diseases, and breathing problems including sleep apnea among other conditions. Mental conditions including anxiety, clinical depression, and other kinds of mental disorders may also occur due to the condition of obesity and being overweight.
Fortunately, there are several ways in which you can fight extra weight and obesity and have good health and fitness again. A healthy regular diet, as well as regular exercise and physical activities, are some ways to have a normal weight. You can include in your diet food that helps burn fat, reduce your calorie intake, and control your weight. These foods can increase the metabolism rate of the body so that the body burns more calories during the day. When it happens, you lose more weight over a period and gain better fitness and health. Below are the 9 best foods for burning weight and weight loss.
Estimated reading time: 12 minutes
Table of contents
The Science Behind Fat Burning
Fat burning is a complex physiological process governed by a range of factors, including diet, exercise, and genetics. Understanding the science behind fat burning can empower individuals to make informed choices about their lifestyles and optimize their weight management efforts.
- Metabolism Matters: At the heart of fat burning is metabolism, the sum of all chemical processes within the body. Metabolism comprises two primary components: anabolism (building up) and catabolism (breaking down). Fat burning predominantly occurs during the catabolic phase.
- Energy Balance: To lose fat, the body must create a calorie deficit, where it expends more energy (calories) than it consumes. This deficit triggers the breakdown of stored fat for energy.
- Fat as Stored Energy: Fat is essentially stored energy. When the body requires more energy than it gets from food, it turns to these fat stores for fuel. Adipose tissue, commonly known as body fat, is where this energy is stored.
- Role of Hormones: Hormones play a significant role in fat regulation. Insulin, for instance, regulates blood sugar and fat storage. Conversely, hormones like adrenaline and noradrenaline stimulate fat release from adipose tissue for energy.
- Thermogenesis: Fat burning also involves thermogenesis, the process by which the body generates heat. Some foods and activities, such as exercise, can increase thermogenesis and boost calorie expenditure.
- Muscle Mass Matters: Muscle tissue is metabolically active, meaning it burns calories even at rest. Thus, increasing muscle mass through resistance training can enhance fat burning as it increases the body’s basal metabolic rate.
- Nutrient Utilization: The body prioritizes using carbohydrates for energy due to their quick availability. However, during extended periods of activity or fasting, it switches to fat metabolism. This shift is essential for fat loss.
- Dietary Factors: Certain foods are believed to enhance fat burning. For instance, foods rich in fiber can increase feelings of fullness, reducing overall calorie intake. Spices like cayenne pepper may temporarily boost metabolism, aiding in fat loss.
- Balanced Diet: Fat burning isn’t solely about reducing fat intake. A balanced diet that provides essential nutrients ensures that the body functions optimally, allowing for efficient fat utilization.
- Individual Variability: It’s crucial to recognize that the rate of fat burning can vary significantly between individuals due to genetics, hormones, and lifestyle factors.
Understanding the intricate science behind fat burning empowers individuals to make informed choices. However, it’s essential to remember that there’s no one-size-fits-all solution. Effective fat loss often involves a combination of a healthy diet, regular physical activity, and personalized strategies based on individual needs and goals.
1. Medium Chain Triglyceride (MCT) Oil
MCT oil improves the metabolism rate of the body so that you burn more calories during the day even when you are not doing any activity. You can replace the cooking oil in your food with MCT oil. The latter is easily available at groceries These oils have molecules with a short length. Therefore, the oils are absorbed easily by the human body. They are subsequently metabolized by the liver. They are either converted into ketones or energy.
Only 2 tablespoons of MCT oil every day can increase the metabolism rate of a human by 5% for 24 hours. You will be burning 120 calories more during the day with this much increase in your metabolism rate. Over a period, you are likely to lose a good amount of weight when you include foods like MCT oil in your diet regularly.
Some fish that are called fatty fish contain a high amount of Omega 3 fatty acids. The fats are good and improve heart health. Examples of fatty fish that are good for your heart and can reduce obesity include sardines, herring, salmon, and mackerel among others. Regular consumption of these fish can reduce the inflammation in the body as well as prevent adverse conditions including cancer or heart diseases.
The Omega 3 fatty acid content of the fatty fish helps in reducing body fat. A recent study found that adults who took more fish oil supplements were able to lose weight faster. It occurred due to lesser body and blood concentration of a hormone called cortisol. Cortisol secretion in the body is associated with stress. When the body has more concentration of cortisol in the blood, it will store and accumulate more fats. Therefore, the consumption of fatty fish will increase the concentration of Omega 3 in the blood, reduce cortisol levels, and result in loss of weight and fats.
Fatty fish is also high in protein. Proteins have a high satiation value and provide the feeling of fullness. You do not wish to eat again for a long period when you eat fatty fish and other foods that have a high satiation value.
Coffee is one of the most popular beverages worldwide for its mental and physical benefits. Coffee has a favorable impact on the physical and mental performance of humans immediately. It also improves the metabolism rate of the body. If you can intake 1 mug of coffee approximately one hour before your exercise session, you are likely to lose weight and burn up to 17% more calories. You can easily burn 200 calories or even more every day by consuming two or more mugs of coffee each day. However, ensure that you do not consume more than 400 mg of coffee each day, as it may cause side effects including insomnia and anxiety among others.
4. Green Tea
Green tea has been one of the most popular foods across the world for losing weight, improving metabolism rate, reversing aging, and other benefits. People in Japan have the longest life in general and are fond of green tea.
Green tea may reduce your weight directly due to its component called EGCG or Epigallocatechin Gallate. This substance can help you in losing belly fat as it can promote the burning of fat. You can consume green tea before any physical activity that you do and increase your fat-burning rate by up to 17%.
Apart from helping you lose weight, green tea may also offer other benefits. It may protect the body against cancer, improve the functionality of the brain, and also reduce your risk of heart disease. Green tea is a superfood and should be consumed more often for its multiple benefits for health, and for controlling obesity and weight.
Eggs are called superfoods because of the multiple nutrients (including proteins, vitamins, and minerals) that they contain. The yolk of an egg may be high in cholesterol. However, overall, the eggs protect the heart function and help you lose weight.
Eggs have a high satiation value. You do not wish to eat anything else if you consume eggs in the form of an omelet or any other egg recipe. Those who consume eggs for breakfast are likely to consume much lesser calories during the day. Eggs also contain good quality proteins that improve the metabolism rate of humans. You may burn up to 35% more calories during the day due to your high metabolism when you consume more eggs.
Consuming one or two eggs every day does not seem to have any bad effect on the cholesterol level of the body. You can safely consume 6 or 7 eggs in a week to have a high metabolism rate and to burn more calories.
6. Whey Protein
Those who have indulged in bodybuilding and weightlifting would know about whey protein. Whey protein can provide for faster and better muscle growth when combined with weightlifting exercises. You may also lose fat (and not muscles) when you include whey protein in your diet at the time you are trying to lose weight.
Whey proteins can be used for making protein drinks and shakes. You can consume these protein shakes more often during the day for weight loss. Proteins are less in calories but provide a feeling of fullness (and fewer hunger pangs) due to their high satiation value. Whey protein and protein shake consumption will also enhance the metabolic rate of the body. The protein shakes can be a healthy snack option for reducing appetite and for muscular growth. The more muscles you have, the more calories you would burn during a day, thereby boosting weight loss.
7. Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV)
ACV is obtained from the fermentation of apple juice. The vinegar reduces your hunger pangs and ensures that you do not want to eat again and again during the day. Acetic acid is a substance that can increase the fat burning rate inside the human body. It is found in apple cider vinegar and is a good amount. Therefore, vinegar is a proven food that helps burn belly fat.
The health benefits of ACV are also supported by clinical research and laboratory test. For instance, a study conducted on obese men found that adding up to two tablespoons (less than 15 ml) of ACV to diet regularly helped these men lose up to 2 kgs weight in 3 months.
However, ensure that ACV is only consumed in an optimum amount. Consuming more than 10 ml to 15 ml of ACV in a day may result in constipation and other adverse effects on health. Vinegar also helps in reducing blood sugar levels and is beneficial for those suffering from diabetes.
The Greek yogurt contains high amounts of protein and is therefore having a high satiation value. Consumption of this particular dairy product every day ensures that your muscles are protected from damage and your metabolism rate is boosted throughout the day.
Yogurt contains a substance called linoleic acid that has been found to cause a reduction in stored fat in the human body. Yogurt is also probiotic that is good for digestion and gut health. Probiotics ensure that you do not have an urge to eat again and again.
9. Olive Oil
Olive oil (one a part of the Mediterranean diet) is now a popular cooking oil throughout the world due to its benefits for heart and weight loss. Olive oil consumption can release certain hormones that provide for satiation and a feeling of fullness. It also boosts the metabolic rate of the body and provides for more burning of calories during the day. Olive oil can be included in the diet regularly and can be added to salads or cooked foods.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Fat-burning supplements may also boost the metabolism rate of the body, which helps in reducing weight. However, some of them can be ineffective, unsafe, or both. You must consult your physician to know the safety and efficacy of a supplement that you are going to use for weight loss before you consume it.
Drinking more water can help you lose more weight. If you drink water before the time of your meal you are likely to eat less. Water may also remove toxins from the body and provide for good health in other ways.
Skipping meals (especially breakfast) can be bad for your help. Instead, you should focus on including healthy and nutritious food in your meals, and on portion control.
Just like weight gain, weight loss is also a gradual process and you should not expect any miracles. Apart from including more of the above-listed foods in your diet regularly, you should also exercise regularly to have better fitness and to lose more weight.
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