The most difficult part about losing weight is restricting food intake. Research now shows that you can lose weight without restricting calorie intake so long as you increase intake of fruits and vegetables.
Eating fruits and vegetables also allows for sustainable weight loss because of its low-calorie density. Low calorie density food fill you up without loading the calories. This helps satisfy hunger while keeping calories consumed down.
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Low Calorie Density
Low calorie density food are usually low in fat and simple carbohydrates. Fat and simple carbohydrates is what makes a particular meal calorie dense. An example of a calorie dense meal is a piece of cheesecake which is loaded with fat, sugar and simple carbohydrates. Example of low-calorie dense meal is lean meat, fruits and vegetables.
Effect of Fruits and Vegetables on Sustainable Weight Loss
Researchers conducted a study to investigate the effect of eating water rich food and losing weight. The findings of the study were published in the 2007 issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
71 obese women aged between 22 and 60 participated in the study. One group of participants were placed on a low-fat diet. The other group was placed on a diet that had low-calorie density. This basically consisted of food that was low in fat and was water rich. Water rich food are typically fruits and vegetables. Dietitians thought the women how they could make the dietary choices that were in-line with their diet. The women were not restricted in the amount of calories that they consumed.
Both groups had lost considerable weight after 1 year. The women who were on the low-fat diet inevitably started consuming food that had lower calorie density. When someone tries to eat low-fat food, it ultimately leads to more fruits and vegetables.
The other group that were thought to eat water rich food lost more weight in the first 6 months than the participant who only ate a low-fat diet. The group that ate more fruits and vegetables lost 19.6 pounds while the group that ate a low-fat diet lost 14.7 pounds.
The researchers concluded in the study that reducing dietary energy density was an effective strategy for managing body weight while controlling hunger. The researchers emphasized on combining increased fruit and vegetable intakes with decreased fat intake for better and sustainable weight loss results.
Increasing Satiety While Reducing Calories
Interestingly, the women who ate more fruits and vegetables consumed 25% more food by weight than the other group. These women also felt less hungry.
Dr Julia Ello-Martin was one of the lead researchers of the project.
“By eating more fruits and vegetables they were able to eat more, and this probably helped them to stick to their diet and lose more weight,” said Dr Ello-Martin. She further said, “Eating a diet that is low in calorie density allows people to eat satisfying portions and this may decrease feelings of hunger and deprivation while reducing calories.”
Sustainable Weight Loss
Dieting can become very oppressive. Dieters feel hungry all the time. Reducing food intake as is required in all diets, eventually sets off the body’s starvation response. The findings of the latest research shows that increasing intake of food such as fruits and vegetables allow you to eat more at each meal. It also fills you up faster without loading you up with calories. Do note that the amount of fat and simple carbohydrates has to be reduced. One can achieve sustainable weight loss as eating this way can become a lifestyle.