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12 Foods that Burn Fat

Lisa Lillien, the low-cal eating guru behind the Hungry Girl website and cookbook has recently compiled a list of the nine foods that actually help our bodies burn fat! Unfortunately, these foods are not the magic bullet to all of our weight problems but by incorporating a few of these foods into your diet, you can do your metabolism a favor (even if it’s a little favor) by revving it up a few notches.apples

The nine fat burning foods are:

  1. Lean protein
  2. Whole grains
  3. Grapefruit
  4. Green tea
  5. Water
  6. Apples
  7. Cinnamon
  8. Spicy Foods
  9. Light Dairy

Each of the items have their own specific reason for boosting your body’s fat-burning capabilities. For instance, green tea not only increases your metabolism, but Lillien points out that researchers have shown that certain substances in green tea, called polyphenols, actual stimulate the break down of fat. I’ll drink to that!

cinnamon sticksSpicy foods like cayenne pepper and aromatic spices like cinnamon kick your heart rate up and balance out blood sugar levels. When our blood sugar levels are out of whack, we turn to binging on sugary foods, which inevitably drive us to eat more. According to United States Department of Agriculture, it seems that cinnamon may lower blood glucose, triglycerides and LDL cholesterol in people with Type 2 diabetes. Sprinkle some cinnamon on your oatmeal, over a baked apple or in your coffee for a healthy flavor punch!

In addition to Lillien’s list, I’d like to add a few more fat-burning foods:

1) Ginger: Whether you’re eating it pickled with your sushi, crystallized in a muffin or steeped in tea, ginger boosts metabolism by expanding blood vessels and increasing your body’s internal heat.

2) Garlic: This close cousin of onions and chives boasts properties that regulate blood sugar levels and may help to prevent heart disease.garlic Sauté a few cloves in your stir-fry or add it to your pasta sauce. The culinary uses of garlic are numerous. But if you’re worried about garlic breath, chew on some fresh parsley leaves or fennel seeds following your meal to help squash any “aromatic” lingering effects.

3) Asparagus: Alkaloids contained in asparagus are responsible for breaking down fat. And the mild diuretic effect of this nutrient-dense veggie helps to flush out this waste and reduce bloat.

Happy Noshing! 

September 10th, 2008