Plant-based foods that keep you slim don’t come in fancy packages on a shelf or have to cost a fortune. They’re common foods you likely see every single week at the store. They’re not only good for your heart but they’re also power foods that reduce your waistline and help you feel lighter and trim. Every single one of us wants to feel good and it certainly doesn’t hurt to feel slim and slender while we’re at it. Though working out is important, your weight is determined around 80% based on what you eat. Fill up on these plant-based foods that keep you slim and you’re sure to not only feel great, but also look it too!
Whether green, red, yellow, or pink- apples are one of the best plant-based foods that keep you slim. They’re packed with three things that work the magic: fiber, water, and low-gylcemic carbohydrates. They keep you fuller longer than many other fruits due to the high amounts of the fiber pectin they contain. Pectin keeps you full and ensures regularity, a slimmer waistline, and a reduction in your blood sugar levels. Make it a rule to eat an apple a day and you won’t only keep the doctor away but also those unwanted pounds too! Just leave the peanut butter off your apples. Peanut butter is high in fat which may derail your efforts.
Like apples, pears are full of fiber, water, and low-glycemic carbohydrates. Pears are easy to digest and their fiber is mostly soluble, so it soaks up fats and cholesterol to remove them from the body via the digestive tract. Pears are also a great source of Vitamin C like apples are. Vitamin C helps burn fat in your body and can keep your immune system in shape so you feel your best and burn more calories naturally.
Oranges aren’t just good for fighting off a cold- they’re also powerful in their ability to burn fat and keep you full. Oranges have a great amount of soluble fiber, which is easy to digest and keeps you fuller longer than foods with less fiber. Oranges also contain low amounts of the fruit sugar fructose, which some people finds causes them to suffer digestion issues or bloating. Oranges contain a large amount of Vitamin C and B vitamins, which naturally enhances the metabolism.
4. Romaine Lettuce
Romaine seems so boring next to kale and spinach but it’s actually one of the best leafy greens to eat for a few reasons. A head of romaine lettuce is packed with omega 3 fatty acids, which burn fat in your body naturally. Romaine is also friendly to the thyroid since it’s free of goitogrens (which spinach and kale contain more of.) Lastly, it’s high in Vitamin C and water, along with fiber and chlorophyll. Be sure to add this cleansing green to your rotation of greens each week whether in a salad, smoothie, or used as an alternative to a tortilla wrap.
Bananas get such a bad rap and it’s time we gave them a break! Bananas are full of that special fiber pectin I mentioned earlier and they’re a fabulous food to reduce stress since they contain large amounts of Vitamin B6, potassium, and magnesium. Ripe bananas are easier to digest than starchier yellow bananas though all bananas are healthy for you. Just leave off the fattening nut butters when you eat your bananas. One medium banana only contains 90 calories but two tablespoons of nut butter contain roughly 200! Eating one banana a day can keep your blood pressure low, cortisol low, and ensure you have a healthy sleep cycle along with plenty of energy to fuel your workouts.
Blueberries are a well-known superfood but many people still aren’t eating enough of them. They’re packed with fiber, potassium, antioxidants, and specific compounds that have been linked to a better mood and a lower waistline. They’re also fabulous for reducing your risk for diabetes and high cholesterol. Add fresh or frozen blueberries to your next bowl of oatmeal or a smoothie.
Speaking of oatmeal, it’s time you ate more of it! Oatmeal is packed with complex carbs and beta-glucans that help you burn fat around the clock. Beta glucans are types of fibers that actually soak up fat in the body to remove it from the bloodstream. Oatmeal also keeps you full a really long time. Be sure to choose varieties without added sugars. Choose original instant or quick cook oats or better yet, go for rolled (old-fashioned) or steel-cut varieties. The thicker the oat grain and the least processed it is, the better!
Just because romaine is great for you doesn’t mean you should ignore kale completely. If you haven’t heard enough about this leafy green, I’ll be the first to tell you- it’s essential for your health. Kale is one of the best sources of magnesium, fiber, chlorophyll, Vitamins A, C, and E, along with potassium, folate, and B vitamins. It even has protein to boot! It doesn’t matter how you eat kale- just get it into your diet several times a week. I like it juiced with a lemon, ginger, and some carrots but it’s also fabulous in a green smoothie with frozen banana, berries, and Vega One Vanilla Chai nutritional shake.
Carrots are little bombs of nutrition! They’re packed with Vitamin A (beta-carotene) Vitamin C, magnesium, Vitamin B6, fiber, and water. A cup of chopped carrots is only 45 calories yet it contains 5 grams of fiber. This keeps you fuller longer than a cup of fattening granola or a cup of processed chips could even dream of! Carrots are also crunchy and sweet which can help derail your sweet tooth when a craving hits.
10. Wild Rice
Wild rice is my new favorite “it” food to share with everyone. This rice is actually not a grain but comes from an aquatic grass, originally grown in Minnesota. This special feature makes it easier to digest and possibly more nutritious than it’s other rice counterparts. Wild rice has a delicious nutty and slightly sweet flavor and it cooks up just like any other rice you would buy does. It contains two more grams of fiber than other types or rice per serving and much more antioxidants. The dark color of wild rice also indicates it’s higher in vitamins and minerals than refined white rice, which is basically devoid of nutrients altogether. Opt for some hot wild rice porridge in place of your processed cold cereal and I’d be willing to bet you’ll drop five pounds in two weeks without any other changes to your diet. Just leave out the sugar and cream- it’s no good for you in any form or fashion!
11. Flax Seed
Flax seed is incredibly powerful at eliminating fats from the body, even though flax contains natural fats itself. Flax is full of omega 3 fatty acids which act like fuel for your metabolism. Most all of its carbohydrates come from fiber, which means it works to eliminate fats and cholesterol from your body. The more fiber you eat, the slimmer you’ll be. All plant foods like flax contain fiber whereas animal foods contain absolutely none yet they contain much more calories per serving than plants do. Just be sure to use cold-milled flax instead of whole flax seeds. Your body can’t break down the seeds which means you’ll miss out on the benefits. Most any natural plant-based food you eat that’s low in fat can help you burn fat faster and keep it off longer. Don’t fear carbohydrates - they fuel your body and your metabolism much better than fats or animal foods do. Eat a mix of these foods every day, along with foods like sweet potatoes, chia seeds, green beans, mushrooms, and artichokes. All of these are full of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and the magic ingredient- fiber! They’re also easy to digest and relatively inexpensive. What do ya say, let’s eat our way to slim, shall we?