Top 10 Fat Loss Foods

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Many readers have been asking about foods that they can incorporate into their daily diet that can help promote fat loss and create a feeling of fullness. Well you asked for it, now I am delivering!

In my opinion, the best fat loss foods are not just “healthy”, but must pass the following checklist:

(1) Not calorie dense (I have one exception)
(2) Help fill you up
(3) Create only a small release of insulin
(4) Easy to procure/prepare

So let’s get started…

Fat Loss Food #1: Egg Whites

Fat Loss Food #1

This is a favorite of many natural body builders and fitness models because it’s 100% pure protein, containing 4 grams of protein, 0 grams of carbs and fat, and only 16 total calories. Want 10 egg whites for breakfast? Sure why not, it’s only 160 calories and will fill you up. An egg white omelet with some veggies and low fat cheese makes for a great breakfast, while a few egg whites from a hardboiled egg can make for a great snack any time (add some high fiber fruit, like an apple, or blueberries for extra bonus points).

Fat Loss Food #2: Low Fat Yogurt

Fat Loss Food #2

Low fat yogurt is a great way to get a compete protein source, a lot of calcium, and a nice tart flavor to help satisfy your cravings. There are a variety of yogurts, but I would go for those that are not too high in added sugars. For example, it’s better to get plain yogurt and add in the fruit yourself. You should also consider non-fat Greek yogurt, which contains a solid 22 grams of protein in only a 1 cup serving and a mere 120 calories.

Some studies have found that eating yogurt can help in fat loss. It may be due to the fact that calcium reduces a fat cells’ ability to store fat. Or, it may be due to the branched chain amino acids present in dairy products. Either way, low fat, or non fat yogurt deserves to be part of the Top 10 Fat Loss Foods.

Fat Loss Food #3: Low-Sodium Turkey

Fat Loss Food #3

Turkey without the skin is among the lowest fat meats available on the market. To cap it off, it’s also pretty easy to eat on the go. Want to eat 8 ounces of turkey breast? Why not, it’s only about 240 calories and packs a protein punch. I recommend removing the skin, which is all fat, but if you have the skin, just eat in moderation.

Fat Loss Food #4: Apple

Fat Loss Food #4

This is a favorite of mine, because it’s easy to carry around and eat on the go, but it’s also very nutritious and high in fiber, so it helps fill you up. An apple contains 24 grams of carbs, 3 of them being from fiber, and around 80 calories in a medium sized apple. I personally like the taste of green apples the most, but the various types of apples don’t make much of a difference in terms of calorie content.

I do, however, suggest you try to get organic apples when you can. I can’t handle tasting chemicals in the skins of apples that are not organic anymore. Blueberries came very close to making it on to the list because they are so high in fiber and antioxidants, but I think an apple is just easier to eat on the go.

Fat Loss Food #5: Lettuce

Fat Loss Food #5

While lettuce is not that high in fiber, it requires more calories for your digestive system to digest than the lettuce contains. Pretty cool, huh? This is known as a negative calorie balance.

The main reason lettuce made this list is that you can put as much lettuce as you want in a big bowl, fill it up with veggies, lean meats, maybe some beans for some starch, and you’re good to go. The other great quality of lettuce is that it takes a long time to eat, which is a good thing. It takes up to 20 minutes for our brains to sense that we are full. Ideally, the darker green the lettuce, the more antioxidants and the more nutritious.

Fat Loss Food #6: Low-Sodium Chicken/Vegetable Soup

Fat Loss Food #6

Similar to lettuce, drinking soup at a meal can slow you down, which helps your brain register that you are full. It also helps fill you up and is very low in calories because most broth based soups are low in fat, assuming they haven’t been doused in oil.

Like lettuce, you can throw in a lot of veggies and lean meats to make it more nutritious and filling. Healthy Valley has some pretty good low sodium soups, just be careful because some soups have outrageous amounts of sodium, like over 900mg of sodium per 1 cup serving, which is 40% of the suggested daily intake of 2300mg.

Just be careful if you order soups at a restaurant they don’t have any cream added.

Fat Loss Food #7: Almonds

While very calorically dense, almonds snuck onto the list because healthy fats are great in moderation, and almonds are among the best healthy fats. An almond is technically the seed of the fruit of the almond tree and is a great source of vitamin E and manganese. While almonds are not a “complete” protein source, a quarter cup of almonds offers solid 6 grams of protein.

Fat Loss Food #7

Some weight loss studies have shown that the calories from nuts like almonds don’t seem to add weight as compared to other foods with the same amount of calories. The theory is that our bodies do not absorb calories from nuts very efficiently.

Either way, be careful not to munch on almonds all day long, because calories can add up fast. Only a quarter cup of almonds contains 140 calories and 15 grams of fat, which means one cup is a solid 560 calories and 60 grams of fat! A handful (about a quarter cup), on the other hand, makes for a great snack.

Fat Loss Food #8: Oatmeal

Fat Loss Food #8

I love oatmeal because it’s filling, but doesn’t provide many calories. My favorite oatmeal is Kashi Go Lean vanilla, which only has 160 calories per serving, but you’ll be amazed at how much it fills you up because it has 6 grams of fiber. For you hardcore types, McCann’s Steel Oats and Traditional Quaker Oats have almost no sugar, but provide natural carbohydrates that will help fuel your workouts, without spiking your insulin levels. One more thing, if eating enough protein at breakfast is a problem area for you, then consider mixing in some whey protein, use skim milk instead of water, or a cup of egg whites.

Fat Loss Food #9: Low-Sodium Tuna

Fat Loss Food #9

There’s a joke that many natural bodybuilders smell like tuna fish, because they are always eating cans of tuna all day long. The tuna you get at the Deli that’s filled with mayo does NOT count. In fact, mayo is a fat loss disaster, because it’s so calorically dense. I chose tuna because it’s easy to carry around for a high protein snack on the go. Of course, a tuna steak, and most fish for the matter are great sources of protein and healthy fats as well.

Fat Loss Food #10 Broccoli

I never used to eat broccoli as a kid, but fortunately I started eating broccoli after college and I developed a taste for it (as long as it’s steamed, I can’t stand raw broccoli!). Feel free to add it to your salads, or as a side with your lean meat, but you can’t go wrong with broccoli. Well, actually, let me clarify that.

Fat Loss Food #10

If you smother it with sodium/sugar filled teriyaki sauce and stir fry it, broccoli can lose its appeal. Sautéed broccoli is still a heck of a lot healthier than French fries, but steamed is ideal. In general, vegetables are phenomenal fat loss foods and more veggies could have easily made it on this fat loss list.

As you probably started to notice, you can mix and match these 10 fat loss foods to create a number of different healthy, low calorie, nutritious snacks and meals to help you reach your fitness goals.

If you think I should have included something that didn’t make the list, or you have anything to add, leave a comment!

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29 Comments on “Top 10 Fat Loss Foods

  1. Della
    October 12, 2010 #

    Marc, this is a truly stellar article. Very helpful tips! Would love to read any similar articles. Thanks!

  2. Mike
    October 12, 2010 #

    Thanks for all the great articles Marc, this one is really helpful. Keep up the good work! I start every morning with oatmeal, skim milk, blueberries, flax seed, and peanut butter mixed together and nuked for 3 min. Gets me going every time but I have a question, is the whey protein a better option than the peanut butter if I’m trying to keep muscle but slim down?

  3. Gren
    October 12, 2010 #

    I love this list! Out of the 10 items, I’ve been eating 6 of them! Never knew that these could help me keep off fat!
    It’s a shame, though, that I started eating them about a month ago! My lardo body has still not shaped up :(

    Everything takes time huh!

  4. Gordon
    October 12, 2010 #

    I put almonds in my oatmeal every morning and found it encouraging to see them both on the list.

  5. Barbara
    October 13, 2010 #

    Dear Marc, Very good tips > guess over the years I know them all,but the sweet tooth devil always follows me. WHY?? Barb

  6. everett
    October 13, 2010 #

    thank you marc! i’m into about half of these food items but will make a point to use the other five.

  7. MARY
    October 17, 2010 #

    Thanks Marc. I was going to request information about healthy snack foods. I have been eating oatmeal with egg whites whipped into the oatmeal with half a banana. I am now going to eliminate the banana and add half an apple for breakfast. I love the idea of creating combinations of the 10 healthy snack suggestions. It will definitely make life easier on the go.

  8. Scott
    October 17, 2010 #

    Great list Marc…..

    I just tried egg whites instead of H2O with my McCann’s oatmeal….WOW! It was great, never thought about that. Thanks for the tip. Now I am off to create other combinations. Keep up articles coming, much appreciated!

  9. Vic Virzera
    October 18, 2010 #

    Hi Marc:
    A very good list; I have a few other items to suggest if you feel they are appropirate. Walnuts, a small amout dark chocolate: and blueberries and a few pieces of pinaapples which are good anti inflamatory.
    Take care,
    Vic

  10. October 18, 2010 #

    I found this site under my bookmarks, probably bookmarked it my wife. Do you have a rss or something like this? I want to add you to my rss reader, becous liked this article especially your way how to explain this.

  11. dozenz
    October 22, 2010 #

    @Vic
    I would think if it has chocolate than probably not but walnuts by themselves are awesome anda good source of healthy fats.

    Nice list Marc!

  12. lvleph
    November 12, 2010 #

    Weight loss is not food dependent. It is calorie dependent. To lose weight you can eat whatever type of food you want as long as you cut back on calories. Now, of course you have to worry about proper nutrition too, but if your only goal is weight loss then it doesn’t matter what you eat, rather how many calories you take in.
    http://www.cnn.com/2010/HEALTH/11/08/twinkie.diet.professor/index.html

    1. Marc Perry
      November 13, 2010 #

      @ lvleph – Thanks for your comment. This article is about Fat Loss, not exactly just weight loss. I agree you can just create a calorie deficit and most likely lose weight, but the nature of the calories impacts the ability to maintain muscle tissue and promote long term health.

  13. Focus 28 Diet
    December 12, 2010 #

    Very nice blog. I love oatmeal as well! Not sure about the guy who replaced water with egg whites in his oat meals, but other than that the blog is great!

  14. fajas colombianas
    December 30, 2010 #

    I just tried egg whites instead of H2O with my McCann’s oatmeal….WOW! It was great, never thought about that. Thanks for the tip. Now I am off to create other combinations. Keep up articles coming, much appreciated

  15. Marc Perry
    January 6, 2011 #

    @fajas colombianas – Thanks a lot for the comment. I’m looking forward to adding a lot more content soon that I am hoping will be very helpful for you!

  16. Goatzzza
    April 25, 2011 #

    Why is meat on the list???? Becoming vegetarian is the easiest way to get a lower fat diet and vegans consume no calories atall in their diet! Surely getting rid of meat is the best way to go?

    1. Marc Perry
      April 26, 2011 #

      @Goatzzza – Eating lean meats is actually one of the best strategies for losing fat because it creates a (1) strong feeling of satiety, (2) is relatively low calorie, (3) has a large thermic effect – 20%-30% of calories ingested are burned during digestion, (4) helps aid in muscle maintenance, (5) and has been eaten by humans for tens of thousands of years to help our brains and bodies develop. Much of the negative stigma about eating meat comes from hormone pumped animals that are treated very poorly. Fish, Poultry, etc. are excellent sources of protein and in fact are nutrient dense foods!

  17. Manel
    May 5, 2011 #

    I have a question about whey protein. Which is a better choice, whey protein isolate or whey protein concentrate? Thanks!

    1. Marc Perry
      May 5, 2011 #

      @Manel – whey isolate is a cleaner form of whey protein than the concentrate, because all the carbs and fat have been removed through extra filtration. That’s why it costs more. I’m not a fan of protein shakes in general, unless you want to take one right after you workout and you won’t be eating for a couple hours. They are generally a waste of money and food is far superior to protein shakes because unlike protein shakes, eating whole natural foods (1) creates a thermic effect (body burns calories during digestion), (2) will help fill you up more and (3) is natural with no added chemicals. You absolutely don’t need protein shakes, but if they make your life more convenient and you have trouble eating enough protein, they can make sense.

  18. Manel
    May 8, 2011 #

    @ Marc P. Thanks again for the info. I was drinking whey smoothies with fruit for quicker absorption & convenience although I do prefer whole natural foods. I’m not sure if someone has asked this before, but is eating a high quality protein and a carb the best post workout meal? For example chicken breast with veggies and should I add a starchy carb and a good fat to the meal?

    1. Marc Perry
      May 8, 2011 #

      @Manel – I definitely think you want both protein and carbs after a workout. A lot of research has proved the muscles are very “insulin sensitive” meaning they can absorb protein and carbs very easily. Eating starchy carbs is necessary to create the release of insulin, which is anabolic. In other words, carbs can help protein get sucked into the muscles. If you are really dieting down and getting as lean as possible, then the carbs are not as important. I think a 30 grams protein, 50 grams carbs, 15-20 grams fat could work well as a post workout meal, but it really depends on how big you are, how many calories you burn, and what your total target calorie intake is, etc.

  19. Toni
    July 1, 2011 #

    I like the whole yogurt with blueberries concept but I absolutely hate the taste of yogurt. So I substitute the yogurt for lowfat cottage cheese and throw a few walnuts on top along with the blueberries. I have this for breakfast sometimes with a cup of green tea minus the sugar. It’s really good.

    1. Marc Perry
      July 1, 2011 #

      @Toni – cottage cheese is an excellent choice. Thanks for sharing.

  20. Anthony
    July 12, 2011 #

    I have a question about the egg whites. I heard somewhere that eating too much eggs is bad for you, and in this article, you stated that eating 10 egg (egg white) is fine! Can you please explain to me if it’s really safe to eat 10 eggs in a day?

    1. Marc Perry
      July 12, 2011 #

      @Anthony – I’ve never heard of eating egg whites as leading to any health issues. Some nutritionists recommend against excessive intake of the whole egg with the egg yolk, which has a lot of cholesterol. Some research, however has cast doubt on the fact that the cholesterol from eggs actually increases your cholesterol. If you find something to the contrary about egg whites leading to any kind of health issue, let me know.

  21. Anthony
    July 12, 2011 #

    Thank you, I just wanted to make sure before I start adding egg white omelets to my breakfast!

  22. fizaamani
    September 19, 2012 #

    Great article Marc. Looks like i have to add apple into my diet :0

  23. Josh
    October 22, 2012 #

    Great post. One thing I’d like to add about the broccoli, I make a veggie stir fry. I cook it in coconut oil. Throw some carrots, broccoli, peppers, and whatever else, into the mix. When it’s done I put just a splash of liquid Aminos (natural soy sause) on it. Most of the time I’ll make a little bit of quinoa to have with it.

    But my point is, you can fry things, and not greatly impact the calorie input. Or make it a greasy mess.

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