Comfort foods are normally considered responsible for causing unintended weight gain. However, it is not right to blame comfort foods as a group but certain types of comfort foods that are packed with refined carbohydrate and saturated fats for increasing your calorie intake. Comfort foods can also be healthy and some of them can actually stimulate fat burning.
Foods that help in lifting your mood are termed as comfort foods. Apart from the deep fried junk foods and the sugary treats there are a variety of healthy comfort food options for overcoming the low mood and losing unwanted body fat.
Foods That Actually Burn Fat
Thought oatmeal is drab? By making simple adjustments in your regular oatmeal recipe you can easily transform the dietary fiber and nutrient rich oatmeal into your favorite feel-good food. Add fresh fruits to oatmeal and sweeten it with honey. Studies have shown that regular consumption of oatmeal helps in reducing belly fats.
Cocoa helps in suppressing cortisol production, which is responsible for boosting the abdominal fat reserve. Use pure unsweetened cocoa to make your favorite hot chocolate that apart from improving your mood will help in burning your calories.
Sweet Potato Casserole or Mashed Sweet Potato
Although sweet potato is a popular comfort food but many of us do not know that consuming mashed sweet potato or sweet potato casserole can also help in burning fats. Sweet potato helps in stimulating production of the hormone adiponectin that helps in breaking down fats. As obese individuals have low level of adiponectin, sweet potato is the ideal comfort food for obese and overweight people.
A bowl of hot chicken soup before meal helps in cutting your total calorie intake. It boosts your satiety level and prevents overeating. Moreover, the protein packed soup helps in increasing your metabolism. The spices, herbs and vegetables in the soup further enhance its health benefits.
Pumpkin is packed with antioxidants. By lowering oxidative stress, antioxidants help in improving the sensitivity of the body cells to insulin. Apart from helping in preventing spikes in the blood sugar level, improvement in insulin sensitivity helps in lowering the concentration of insulin in the blood. Too much insulin in the blood triggers production of pro-inflammatory molecules that increase fat storage in the body, especially in the abdomen.
Another antioxidant rich comfort food that can help in burning fats is roasted carrot. According to a University of Arkansas study, the antioxidant content in roasted carrots is higher than that in raw carrots. By neutralizing free radicals, the antioxidants help in obstructing unwanted fat buildup in the body.
Chili with Meat
This spicy stew is not only a great feel-good food but it contains chili peppers and seasoning such as onion, garlic and cumin that help in bolstering metabolism. The fat burning ingredients in the stew stimulate thermogenesis, which helps in breaking down your body’s fat tissues.
As turkey meatloaf is free from saturated fats it is an excellent comfort food for reducing body weight. Your body spends excess calories to metabolize proteins. Hence, you will burn more calories while digesting the healthy protein. Furthermore by increasing satiety, the protein rich food will keep you full for a long time and will reduce your total calorie intake.
Cocktail with Fruit Juices
While the store-bought drinks are packed with sugar, by eliminating sugar from your cocktail recipe and adding fat burning ingredients you can burn fats while enjoy a refreshing drink. Prepare a calorie burning cocktail by blending vodka, fresh cranberry juice, lime juice and nectar. Vitamin C in the natural juices in the drink helps in breaking down the belly fats.
Packed with proteins and fibers, lentil helps in stabilizing your blood sugar level and improves satiety. Moreover, it is an excellent source of choline, which stimulates fat burning. A study published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition has revealed that increasing consumption of lentils helps in reducing the belly fat.