You probably have already learned the basic's about diet, caloric deficit, food portions, fats, protein, carbohydrates, exercise routines, and where to get fab workout gear. Now, let's talk about food that you can eat that will help you shed off that unwanted fat, AND help you build muscle.
What’s more awesome about these superfoods, is that they are not hard to find, easy to prepare, and don't cost a fortune! Next time you go food shopping, you might want to include the following:
- Eggs- a whole egg, yes, including the yolk, is a great source of high quality protein. Eggs are cheap, easy to cook, and easily available, they also have Vitamin D, Vitamin E, Vitamin K, Vitamin B2, Vitamin B6, Calcium and Zinc. Don’t worry about the fat and cholesterol in the yolk, it has almost no effect on blood cholesterol.
- Fish Oil- High in Omega 3, which can help in weight loss and fat burning, reduces inflammation of the joints, and increases testosterone levels. They promote healthy blood flow, which helps in improving exercise performance.
- Salmon- High both in Omega 3 and protein, this fish truly deserves to be on this list. It is also a good source of choline, pantothenic acid, biotin and potassium. It is also very tasty, and can be cooked in a variety of ways- baked, broiled, pan seared, grilled.
- Berries- When we say berries, we are talking about goji berries, acai, bilberries, blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, and cherries. Packed with 18 essential amino acids, 21 trace minerals, vitamins B1, B2, B6, and E, linoleic acid, selenium, germanium, and beta carotene. You can grow them in your backyard, not only they are fun to eat, they are fun to pick too.
- Yogurt- The good bacteria as we all know is good for our gastrointestinal health, but another benefit we get from eating yogurt is Casein, a milk protein that provides essential amino acids to the body for muscle gains and strength. But let me remind you, not all yogurt are created equal, we recommend getting Greek, or the plain, low fat ones.
- Flax Seeds- Grind them and add them to your smoothies, yogurt, oats, salads, porridge, soups, cereals, and pancake or cookie batter. High in fiber, protein, magnesium, calcium, phosphorous, and omega 3. A spoonful per day is enough to meet your daily needs.
- Quinoa- Quinoa is higher in fiber & protein than rice or oats, tastes a lot better and is naturally gluten free. It is filled with too many nutrients, antioxidants, and minerals. Even if it is a plant, it contains all 9 essential amino acids. It also has a great effect on metabolic health and blood sugar control.
- Oats- Perfect as a post workout nibble, oats are rich in beta-glucan, a fiber known to lower bad cholesterol. Oats also helps you cut down on food, making you feel full longer, lessens your cravings, so it aids weight loss and good digestion. Also a great source of protein for muscle gain, and controls blood sugar levels too.
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil- It has 70% monounsaturated fats that protect against heart diseases and cancer. The wide range of antioxidants found only in Olive oil, strengthen the immune system, boosts mental agility, and keeps the body running smoothly.
- Green Tea- We already have talked about the benefits of green tea here and also in this post, it is the healthiest drink, it boosts metabolism, fights certain diseases and cancers, and an excellent source of antioxidants for overall wellness.
These superfoods are packed with protein, healthy fats, good cholesterol, antioxidants, minerals, and vitamins. They are all natural food- fish, grains, fruits and vegetables, nothing processed. Try to consume most of these foods together, every 3 hours, but be mindful of portions. Cut back on junk foods and still try to include these foods on your cheat days! :)
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Written by Sparkle & Sweat ShopBlog Writer: Jan Paula Aquino