Fall Superfoods that Help with Weight Loss from 12 Fall Superfoods that Help with Weight Loss
12 Fall Superfoods that Help with Weight Loss
Fall Superfoods that Help with Weight Loss
"Fall harvest and cooler weather bring a slew of new delicious produce for autumn recipes,” said Certified Nutritional Consultant and Co-Founder of Project Juice, Lori Kenyon Farley. “I grew up in the Northeast, picking apples from the local orchards and grapes from the vines in our backyard. On Saturday mornings, our house would be toasty and smell delicious from the combination of apples and cinnamon, cumin and chili, and chicken roasting in the oven. There was no mistaking the season. Cooking and baking with seasonal ingredients is the easiest way to embrace the change in seasons and it means you are using fresh locally grown produce, which will be most nutritious and least costly.”
With that tip in mind, be sure to keep an eye out for these in-season superfoods, which were chosen by top dietitians and nutritionists.
“Our body uses carbohydrates as a primary source of fuel; therefore, eating whole grains is an important part of creating natural long-lasting energy,” said Rebecca Lewis, in-house registered dietitian at HelloFresh. “Whole grains are well known for their high fiber content which contributes to maintaining healthy digestion. Moreover, research has found that eating whole grains (as opposed to refined and processed grains) substantially lowers total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, triglycerides, and insulin levels. Lastly, it’s been found that whole grains help lower the risk for heart disease, cancer, and diabetes – all diseases that have become much more prevalent in recent years.” She recommends including brown rice, quinoa, barley and whole wheat pasta in your diet to reap the benefits of whole grains.
“What makes beans such a super food? Well to begin with, they’re a fabulous source of vegetarian protein and fiber—two nutrients that help you stay full and satisfied (a bonus when watching your weight),” Lewis said. “The protein and fiber in beans also stabilize the rise in blood sugar that occurs after eating, which has also been shown to help stabilize mood. Moreover, as a meat substitute, they are a rich source of iron. Beans are low in fat and have a very high antioxidant content—something we could all use in these winter cold and flu months. They are a great source of magnesium and potassium, nutrients that work together to lower blood pressure, maintain healthy cholesterol, and keep your heart and blood vessels healthy.” Black beans, cannellini beans, garbanzo beans and lentils are all good choices that are packed with fiber.
“A nut or seed is basically a storage device that contains all the proteins, calories and nutrients that a plant will need to flourish—all in a tiny concentrated package. Nuts are a rich source of vitamins and minerals such as vitamin E, vitamin K, vitamin B6, Iron, as well as potassium, calcium and magnesium (which help reduce blood pressure). Nuts are also an excellent source of fiber and proteins for our diets,” Lewis said. “Additionally, studies have shown that nuts help control your weight. Diets that include moderate amounts of nuts (although higher in fat and calories, are also high in protein and fiber) help prevent hunger pangs that typically lead to snacking and overeating. Lastly, nuts help reduce the visible signs of aging like wrinkles and sagging skin.” Some of her top recommendations include almonds, walnuts, pistachios and cashews.
Chock full of vitamin C and low on calories, bell peppers are a top choice if you’re watching your weight or if you’re simply trying to eat healthier. They’re also rich in carotenoids, Lewis said, which helps to keep your eyes strong. Just one cup of red bell peppers brings a wide variety of health benefits, so be sure to fit this food into your fall lineup.
“At only 10 calories, half a gram of fiber, and half a gram of protein per sprout, these nutrition cannonballs will help keep you satisfied longer while eating fewer calories,” said Ashvini Mashru, an award-winning licensed dietitian nutritionist and author of the book Small Steps to Slim. “Don’t sabotage this nutritious vegetable by cooking them with pancetta or bacon—try roasting with olive oil, garlic, and a sprinkle of salt and pepper, or try making Brussels sprout chips—peel off each leaf, toss with olive oil, salt and pepper, then roast until crispy.”
“With loads of fiber and flavor on the sweet side, beets stave off hunger—and satisfy your sugar cravings—with minimal calories,” Mashru said. “Beets get a bad rap for being high in sugar, but these folate-rich veggies only contain eight grams of sugar per serving. So dig in.”
“Pears are high in fiber, which can help regulate your digestive system and their pectin promotes fullness,” Mashru said. “At only about 100 calories per pear, this juicy, sweet fruit is great as a stand-alone snack, with a meal, or pureed into dessert.”
Rich in antioxidants and high in vitamin C, vitamin K, calcium, magnesium and fiber, kale is a dark leafy green that should be a staple in your diet, especially in the fall. “Just one cup provides you your daily recommended dose of vitamin C, which will strengthen your immune system, boost your metabolism [and] increase your hydration, all while decreasing your risk of certain cancers,” said Certified Nutritional Consultant and Co-Founder of Project Juice, Lori Kenyon Farley. “It is easy to prepare, high in fiber and low in calories. This hearty green leaf can be found year round (although it is sweetest in the fall after the first frost), and it can be prepared in many ways.” She recommends using kale in salad or soup.
“This fruit can only be found in the fall but it is worth the wait. They contain a variety of antioxidants, helping improve skin, bone quality, digestion and the immune system,” Kenyon Farley said. Not to mention the fact that they’re sweet and refreshing.
Another fruit that’s refreshing and best enjoyed in the fall, grapes are also high in antioxidants and vitamin C. That combination makes them “a natural immune booster,” Kenyon Farley said. “Their natural harvest is in the fall, when their flavor and sweetness is at its peak.”
“The hard-to-find Amazonian superfruit, camu camu, delivers a potent dose of vitamin C for immunity and high levels of potassium, which enhance liver function,” Kenyon Farley said. “It also serves as an anti-inflammatory and its flavonoids help keep harmful free radicals at bay.” You won’t find this fruit at your local supermarket, but it’s more widely available in the form of powder.