When it comes to weight loss, the hard truth is that there are no miracles: If you eat fewer calories than you burn, you will lose weight.
But nutritional experts know that all calories are not created equal.
“Certain foods do boost metabolism and have what we call a thermogenic or fat-burning effect that helps you burn more calories when you eat them,” Tara Gidus, a registered dietitian and nutritionist for the Orlando Magic basketball team, tells Newsmax Health.
Ellen Kamhi, author of Weight Loss: The Alternative Medicine Guide, says that fat-burning foods generally have one or more of these three characteristics: They contain lean protein, “good” fats, and are high in fiber. “These foods increase fat burning because they take more energy to digest,” Kamhi says.
Here are six top fat-burning foods:
1. Lean meat. Eating lean meat raises satiety levels so that you feel fuller longer and therefore snack less. Protein-rich meat requires a lot of energy to be broken down by the body so you burn more calories relative to how much you eat.
2. Green tea. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reported that study participants who drank four cups of green tea daily lost six pounds or more in eight weeks. The brew can be enjoyed hot or cold to get the same fat-burning results. Noted nutritionist, J.J. Virgin, author of the New York Times best-seller, The Virgin Diet, says that green tea contains EGCG, a proven fat-burning antioxidant.
SPECIAL: These 5 Things Flush 40 lbs. of Fat Our of Your Body — Read More.
3. Avocados. This food is rich in monounsaturated fat and high in fiber, says Virgin. Added to a salad, it steps up fat burning and keeps you fuller longer.
4. Raw almonds. A handful of almonds – which contain protein, good fats, and fiber – provides a triple punch to help burn fat and curb appetite.
5. Hot peppers. Adding cayenne pepper or other hot peppers to foods improves the body’s ability to burn fat, says Kamhi. Capsaicin, the chemical that makes peppers hot, boosts metabolism.
© 2014 NewsmaxHealth. All rights reserved.