My husband has decided that he wants to lose weight and get in better shape this spring. He has eliminated most of his soda consumption and increased his activity, but since I am the main cook in the house, it is up to me to monitor what he is eating. Since men tend to lose weight faster than women anyway, it stands to reason that different foods will also kick start fat burning for men. These are five foods that will turbo-charge fat burning for men.
1. Whole grains. Whole grains like oatmeal, popcorn, brown rice, and quinoa are a mix of complex carbohydrates and fiber that help your insulin levels to stay low after you eat. Since whole grains contain more fiber it takes the body longer to break them down and digest them, resulting in maximum nutrient absorption on less calories. Adding a whole grain like oatmeal for breakfast is a great way to start the day.
2. Leafy greens. Leafy greens like kale, spinach, and chard pack a nutritional punch. Per calorie leafy greens contain more protein per calorie than red meat. They are very low in calorie and contain a lot of water, and fiber so you can eat almost an unlimited amount and still lose weight. Leafy greens can easily be added to smoothies, wilted over hot dishes, or added to omelets.
3. Spicy food. According to Men’s Health eating 1 spicy meal per day can ramp up your metabolism by up to 25%, and that spike can last up to 3 hours. Spiciness usually makes people eat slower, which often results in eating less. Hot peppers contain capsaicin which can curb appetite.
4. Green tea. Hot beverages not only help to fill you up, green tea can stimulate fat burning in the abdomen. Green tea is great at hydrating the body, and contains the phytochemical catechins which can ramp up the metabolism. Drink green tea hot, several times a day for maximum effect.
5. Vinegar. Salads are a no-brainer when you are on a diet, but heavy, creamy dressings can add so many calories and fat that it cancels out the health benefits of the salad. Flavored vinegars are an excellence dressing replacement. Not only do they add flavor, some studies suggest that vinegar can help break down fat. The best part is that vinegar has no calories.
Some honorable mentions in the fat-burning foods department are raw vegetables, watermelon, and berries. These all make great snacks, have a high water content, and contain a ton of fiber.
Reach for one of these foods the next time the munchies strike and your waistline will thank you.
Sources: menshealth.com, mensfitness.com, webmd.com