If you want to reduce hunger, lose weight and maintain optimal health, this article will show you the best healthy fats for weight loss.
Most of us get more protein and carbs than we need, but not enough fats. In fact, some folks actively avoid fats. Why? Because of common myths like ‘eating fats will make you fat’, ‘saturated fats cause heart disease’ and so on. I bet you’ll be surprised to find some fats on this list. But any fears you may have about them are based on myths and not scientific facts.
Not all fats are bad for you – healthy fats increase satiety, promote weight loss, control cholesterol, improve heart health, relieve depression, and regulate blood sugar levels.
But remember that fats contain double the number of calories in proteins and carbs per gram. So eat them in moderation. Fats should account for 25-30 percent of your total daily calorie intake.
But all fats aren’t created equal, trans fats and other processed fats can cause inflammation and consequently increase risk of chronic diseases.
Healthy fats for weight loss and curbing hunger
One of the things that separate avocados from other fruits are there high amounts monounsaturated fats. They also contain a fatty acid called oleic acid which has been proven to reduce inflammation and lower risk of cancer.
Avocados are a perfect weight loss food because they contain fiber, which increases satiety. In this study, participants felt 23 percent more satisfied after eating avocado.
Almonds contain fats, vitamins, protein, fiber, magnesium, and manganese. Even though they’re high in calories, research shows that up to 15 percent of their calories are not absorbed by the body since they’re not easy to break down.
Moderate intake of almonds will help you lose weight. Studies show that they reduce hunger and that those who eat them end up consuming fewer calories.
3. Wild-caught salmon
Avoid farmed salmon as it has been found to contain toxins, antibiotics and other bad stuff. Instead, eat wild caught salmon. Research shows it can help reduce inflammation, lower risk of heart disease and relieve depression.
The high omega 3 levels in salmon are what make it a go-to food. Plus, this fish is very filling and low in calories.
4. Extra virgin olive oil
Extra virgin olive oil is the best option. Research shows that this oil can lower blood pressure and regulate cholesterol levels.
Now, you’re probably wondering how extra virgin olive oil will help you lose weight. Well, there’s evidence showing that consuming olive oil or even smelling it increases feelings of fullness.
5. Dark Chocolate
‘Chocolate’ isn’t considered a health food. But dark chocolate is an exception. It has strong antioxidant properties and has been proven to curb sweet cravings.
Note that the darker the chocolate the better. But eat dark chocolate occasionally since one bar contains over 800 calories.
If you haven’t been consuming flaxseeds, you’re totally missing out. This superfood contains lots of nutrients and it can help you drop pounds.
According to this study, flaxseed can help obesity and promote weight loss. Its fiber content will help keep you full for longer.
7. Chia seeds
There’s no reason not to eat chia seeds since they’re super-easy to prep. You can simply soak them in water or milk overnight and they’ll be ready to consume.
If you eat this superfood, it’ll expand in the stomach and make you feel full faster. You should also eat chia seeds if you’re diabetic – this study found that they help regulate blood sugar levels.
Edamame should be part of your diet – they contain protein, fiber, carbs, vitamins, minerals, fats and so on. And the best part is that they don’t raise blood sugar levels like other carbs.
Adding them to your diet will help you lose more weight since they are low in calories and nutrient dense.
9. Coconut oil
Coconut oil is one of the best sources of saturated fats. And there’s no need to avoid saturated fats, new research shows that they don’t increase the risk of heart disease. In fact, studies show that populations that eat coconut oil are healthier.
So how will coconut oil help you lose weight? According to research, coconut oil contains medium-chain triglycerides that help burn more calories compared to other fats. Researchers also say that coconut oil helps reduce appetite.
10. Peanut butter
Are you surprised that peanut butter is on this list? I understand your reaction. Frankly, peanut butter has a few negatives – it’s high in calories, contains omega 6 fatty acids, and most people binge on it.
But you’ll also get lots of nutrients if you consume it in moderation. Plus, it contains p-coumaric acid which has been proven to lower risk of stomach cancer.
Tuna isn’t just a great source of lean protein, just like salmon, it contains high amounts of omega 3 fatty acids. Eat this fish twice a week to improve overall health and lose more weight.
Research shows that tuna increases leptin (hunger hormone) sensitivity which makes it easier to control hunger.
Do you think cheese is bad? Well, the French don’t! In fact, it’s estimated that the average French person consumes about 57 pounds of cheese a year. Yet, there are lower rates of obesity and heart disease in France compared to America.
One study found that cheese increases good gut bacteria and as you may know, it’s easier to lose weight when you have a healthy gut.
These nuts are a great source of omega 3 fatty acids and antioxidants. And you’ll be surprised to find out that, even though walnuts are high in calories, research shows they don’t increase the risk of obesity.
But note that some folks are allergic to walnuts – if you’re one of those people avoid them completely.
Do you want to suppress your appetite? Eat olives before a meal. Italian researchers found that eating 10 olives before a meal can reduce your appetite by 22 percent.
Olives have high amounts of monounsaturated fats, which have been proven to slow digestion and increase feelings of fullness.
15. Sunflower seeds
Consuming these seeds will give you vitamin E, vitamin B-1, copper, and fatty acids. The fats in sunflower seeds actually help improve brain function and balance hormones. Your health will improve if you replace the polyunsaturated fats in sunflower with trans fats.
But realize that oil made from sunflower seeds isn’t healthy since it has a low smoking point. You’re better off cooking with olive or coconut oil.
16. Grass-fed butter
Over the years butter has gotten a bad rep because it contains saturated fat. But as I mentioned earlier, saturated fats don’t increase the risk of heart disease when consumed in moderation. In fact, moderate intake of butter regulates cholesterol and blood sugar levels.
Butter from grass-fed cows will give you energy, suppress hunger and help you lose weight.
For many years eggs were considered unhealthy because of the cholesterol in the yolk. But new research shows that the cholesterol in the blood isn’t affected by the cholesterol in eggs.
18. Greek yogurt
Greek yogurt is super-convenient if you don’t have time to cook. It’s very filling and also contains probiotics which will help improve gut health.
Avoid low-fat yogurts since they are usually loaded with sugar. It’s worth noting that yogurt has been proven to improve digestion, fight obesity and lower risk of heart disease.
For one thing, beef contains oleic acid (monounsaturated fat) that has been found to improve heart health. And the saturated fat will help lower LDL (and) cholesterol and increase HDL (good) cholesterol.
As you may know, protein has a high thermic effect of food, which means it’ll boost your metabolism and help you lose more weight.
20. Pine nuts
Pine nuts are perfect for you if you’re trying to lose weight. They contain cholecystokinin, fatty acids which suppress appetite, according to research.
In one study, women who consumed pinolenic acid (found in pine nuts) before breakfast reduced their total calorie intake by 37 percent.
As you can see, there’s plenty of science-backed evidence showing that eating healthy fats will help you lose weight. Now, add some of these foods to your diet.
Do you know other healthy fats for weight loss?