What if someone tells you that you can actually eat more but still weigh less? Would you consider that unbelievable ?
Research has shown that the volume of food that you eat and not the number of calories that you consume triggers the satiety systems in the brain. So basically this means that if you eat less calorie-dense food, your body will feel full while still consuming fewer calories.
Generally, foods that are high in fats and sugar pack a lot more calories per pound than foods that have more dietary fiber and water. So you can indeed have a healthy and fulfilling diet, and still shed that undesirable fat and improve your diet. Read the following tips to know how you can opt for nutritious food that offers ample nutrition but with fewer calories.
• One general rule is to avoid a lot of oil, which means no fried foods. Now that Chanukah is over you will be better off avoiding the deep-fried French fries and eating boiled or baked potatoes. The rule applies for all vegetables and meats.
Pan frying or sautéing adds fewer calories than deep frying, but some oil is still added, and even a tablespoon of oil can add many calories and fat to your diet. Steaming your vegetables is a flavorful and extremely healthy option.
• Everyone likes their food to be appetizing; by choosing seasonings wisely you can have the same quality of taste and fewer calories. A little lemon, orange or lime juice and zest can add oodles of flavor to your salads and meat. So can herbs and spices like basil, thyme, mint, turmeric, pepper and lots more.
Mustard and hot sauce are usually less calorie dense and taste great; some ginger and garlic help a lot too. With endless options, you can experiment and get creative, becoming healthier at the same time.
• Avoid sugar as much as you can. Switching to unrefined sugar and using unprocessed honey wherever possible will help you achieve your weight loss aims. Eating a fresh fruit will not only make you feel fuller but it will also provide a lot more vitamins and minerals.
• Use whole grains instead of the refined ones. Whole grains have more dietary fiber and various vitamins and minerals; these are lost in the refining process.
• Choose lean meat, fish and poultry instead of the high-fat cuts. Trim steaks of all edge fat. “Choice” or “Select” grades of beef have less fat than “Prime.” “Loin” and “Round” cuts have the least amount of fat.
• Have an appetizer! A delicious but low-calorie salad and broth soup before your meals will make you consume fewer calories; it has been proven by research.
Follow the advice presented in these tips and you will soon notice an improvement in how you feel. Keep your pantry stocked and plan ahead; munching on some vegetables and fruits throughout the day will keep your tummy satisfied.
One of the most important factors is not giving up. Experiment and find the foods that you enjoy eating. There are countless variations and options available that can make your meal both appealing and fulfilling. Here is a recipe for a healthy and filling soup. It is also low in calories, full of nutrients and absolutely delicious!
Creamy Mushroom Soup
- 2 tablespoons oil, divided
- 3 packages of mushrooms, diced
- 1 head of cauliflower, chopped
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 celery stalks, diced
- 1 tablespoon lemon zest
- 4 sprigs fresh thyme
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 4 cups vegetable broth
- 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
- ½ tsp. pepper
- ½ tsp. onion powder
- 1 cup Greek yogurt
1. In a large pot sauté mushrooms in 1 tsp. of oil until golden brown add leaves from thyme sprigs and lemon zest and cook until fragrant.
2. Separate the mushrooms leaving half in the pot, add remaining oil, onion, garlic, celery and onion. Sauté until soft.
3. Add cauliflower and spices, sauté for 1 minute.
4. Add broth and cook until cauliflower is soft, approximately 6 minutes.
5. Puree and then add back the remaining mushrooms and Greek yogurt.
By Jamie Feit, MS, RD