Superfoods seem to be all the rage these days, and rightfully so, as they serve as a nutritional powerhouse to our everyday diet. "[Superfoods] can also be a source of antioxidants, substances that shield our bodies from cell damage and help prevent disease," writes Shirley Fan of Real Simple.
While it's pretty well-established that we put a huge emphasis on the direct correlation between what we put on our plates and how we feel inside and out, let's explore our top superfoods for weight loss. Oh and did we mention that they taste good and pair easily with a variety of your favorite dishes? Seriously, what's not to love?
7 weight loss superfoods that complement any dish
Kale is one of the most healthy and popular superfoods to date. One serving, which contains just 33 calories and 0.6 grams of fat, is packed with the vitamins you need to support a healthy lifestyle. For best results, massage it with your favorite oil (we are partial to coconut oil) and toss it in a salad bowl with all of your favorite toppings. Looking to start your morning off right? Simply chop up a serving of raw kale and blend it in with your favorite green smoothie recipe or juice ingredients.
What we love most about chia seeds is that they can be added to any dish, whether it's your morning smoothie, afternoon salad, evening pasta dish or even your dessert. If you've never tried chia pudding pops you're seriously missing out. And don't let the size of this superfood fool you, chia seeds are packed full of antioxidants, fiber, protein and healthy fats. Plus, they have been rumored to support weight-loss efforts and keep hunger at bay.
While they are often overlooked at the grocery store, sprouts such as wheatgrass, lentils, and alfalfa are known for supporting cell regeneration and may even protect you from chronic diseases, including cancer. If you're interested in starting your own garden this coming summer, you should know that growing sprouts is an easy and cost-effective process.
Avocados have been gaining popularity for years now, so whether you enjoy them smashed on your morning Ezekiel toast or you can't get enough guacamole, avocados have a number of different health benefits. They contain omega-3 fatty acids, potassium, glutathione and fiber, making them great for disease prevention. Plus this weight loss superfood is even proven to fight belly fat.
While avocados contain healthy fats, they're still fat. So be sure to consume avocados in moderation. For example, cap your consumption at approximately one cup a day. But if you can't stop yourself from having a whole one on your salad each day, adjust your calorie intake elsewhere.
Gluten-free consumers rejoice! Quinoa is naturally free of gluten and rich in nutritional value. One serving of this weight loss superfood packs 24 grams of protein and contains close to half of your daily value of vitamin B6 and iron. Quinoa is also one of the best ways to neutralize free radicals, which can cause aging and contribute to different diseases. Finally, quinoa can be incorporated into a number of meals, such as a morning breakfast bowl or afternoon salad, or stand alone as a main dish. Enjoy!
We featured a number of different superfoods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, but we can't forget salmon. To counter concern about mercury and pesticide contamination, opt for wild salmon. Several of the benefits of consuming salmon include decreased risk of heart disease, increased daily energy and improved insulin sensitivity, which helps to decrease belly fat.
While cranberries have always been a go-to for preventing or alleviating urinary-tract infections, blueberries are now proven to be just as effective. This is just one of the reasons why you should use blueberries to start your morning off right. The superfood has also been known to block the growth of tumor cells, improve the appearance of skin and help you lose weight.