Foods That Help You Burn Fat

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Foods to Help You Lose Fat

salmon on blue plate
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Sticking to a healthy diet is tough — we need all the extra motivation we can get. Adding fat-burning foods to your meals 'n snacks does double duty: They're healthy additions in and of themselves, and they help burn calories. Try the following:

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Berserk for Beans

HG Fat-Burning Foods: Beans
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One bean, two bean, red bean, blue bean. And when I say "red" and "blue," I mean "pinto" and "navy." Whatever type of bean is your personal favorite, you can count on one thing — experts insist it'll be great at helping your body burn fat. Beans are all-around amazing because they contain lots of protein and fiber. Eating protein is one of the very best ways to encourage your body to burn fat: It boosts your metabolism and helps you feel full and energized. Where does the fiber come in? Studies show that dietary fiber can help regulate your appetite and slow down your digestion, both of which are great for weight control. Aside from those navy and pinto beans, stock up on other fat-burning beans like soybeans, garbanzo beans, black beans, white beans, kidney beans, and lima beans. 

Bonus: Beans are incredibly budget friendly. Who doesn't love that?

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Fired Up for Fish

HG Fat-Burning Foods: Fish
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But not just any fish! While most types of seafood are smart choices, they're not all fat-burning superstars like salmon and tuna. You've probably heard that salmon and tuna are great sources of omega-3 fatty acids. Why should you care? Because not only do omega-3s help grow your hair and nails, they stimulate a protein hormone in your body called leptin, which jumpstarts your metabolism and regulates your appetite. Who's up for sushi? Before you go loading up on mayo-laden cut rolls, check out this Hungry Girl Sushi Survival Guide. 

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Hungry for Whole Grains

HG Fat-Burning Foods: Whole Grains
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Are you cuckoo for carbs? Well, then, allow me to introduce your new best friends: quinoa, brown rice, oat, and corn. These foods are considered whole grains (not to be confused with refined white carbs, which are basically the opposite of fat-burning foods), and chowing down on them fuels your bod with much-needed fiber and complex carbohydrates. It's the "complex" part that helps burn fat: 1) Complex carbs break down more slowly than the simple variety, meaning your energy levels won't crash, and 2) They hold your insulin levels steady, which is good because insulin spikes encourage your body to hang on to fat. Rise and shine and burn fat with one of HG's staple recipes, the growing oatmeal bowl.

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Delicious Dairy

HG Fat-Burning Foods: Dairy
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If quinoa is your new best friend, yogurt should come in at a close second. Dairy products contain both protein and calcium, which help keep your muscle mass intact while promoting weight loss. Another tidbit of good news about dairy: Studies show that of two groups of participants on low-calorie diets, the group that included dairy in their diets lost more weight than the dairy-free group. And, as if you need more reason to grow a milk mustache, research shows that probiotics found in some light dairy fights fat.

Dairy can be scary because it usually contains fat, but it's not difficult to stick to fat-free and light varieties of milk, yogurt, and cheese. There are so many delicious options out there. 

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Ready for Red Grapes (and Wine)

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As if we needed another reason to drink red wine. I've saved the best for last: A recent study suggests that red wine (from extracts found in a certain type of red grape) may help your body fight fat. The study found that people who ate a high-fat diet accumulated less fat when they also consumed Muscadine grapes. Conversely, the group that also ate a high fat diet but didn't consume the red grapes accumulated the amount of fat that would be expected based on their food choices. The results are attributed mostly to something called ellagic acid, a compound found in Muscadine grapes. Muscadine grapes are grown primarily in the southeastern United States, and they’re used to make certain American wines. Cheers!

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