When you think about losing weight, your mind might automatically wander to eating less, skipping meals, and developing other unhealthy habits. Instead, it’s important to focus on healthier ways to lose weight. Some ideas may include changing your exercise routine as well as switching up your dieting habits. One important factor, however, is to make sure you eat and drink to help you lose weight.
Instead of focusing on just one or the other, you can find combinations of food and drink that pair together nicely and help promote weight loss. We spoke with Kimberly Snodgrass, RDN, LD, spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, who laid out the best food and drink combinations for weight loss by meals of the day: breakfast, lunch, snacks, and dinner, to make sure you get the most out of your weight loss efforts.
These winning combinations generally feature protein as an important food group, as it helps you to feel fuller longer. The drinks, on the other hand, have been shown to support metabolism and digestion to help your gut remain happy and healthy.
“Eggs can help boost your metabolism for a few hours,” explains Snodgrass. “That’s because proteins require your body to use more energy to digest them. This is known as the thermic effect of food (TEF).” Research published in the Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism has shown that protein-rich foods increase TEF the most.
“Protein may also help keep you fuller for longer, which can prevent overeating,” she says.
As far as drinking coffee goes, Snodgrass suggests that this caffeinated beverage may aid in weight loss by increasing metabolism, decreasing calorie intake, and stimulating fat burning. The most important part, however, is to make sure you drink it black with no added substances like cream or sugar.
Lastly, Snodgrass suggests that the eggs should be prepared without any additional calories. For example, you could have a boiled egg with paprika for flavor, but not throw in calorie-consuming foods like cheese or butter.
When choosing what to have for lunch, keep in mind that this fish and tea combo might serve some wins for weight loss.
Similar to eggs, Snodgrass says grilled fish can help boost your metabolism for a few hours due to the proteins requiring your body to use more energy to digest them (the TEF). This may, again, help keep you fuller for longer.
As for the green tea, this may be your perfect mid-day boost (if you’re drinking it plain, that is).
“Green tea can help promote weight loss by boosting energy levels and improving performance while exercising,” says Snodgrass. “And, green tea contains a high amount of catechins, which are antioxidants that may increase fat burning and boost metabolism.
All great sources of protein, Snodgrass suggests that nuts, seeds, low-sodium black beans, and chickpeas are great metabolism boosters and may keep you full through the night.
Black beans, for instance, are not only a great source of protein which may help with metabolism, but they’re also great for digestion. The soluble fiber in black beans may help keep you full, and also help you maintain a healthy gut, which in return can positively influence the ability to lose weight.