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How Whole Foods Help You Lose Weight

This is NOT what I mean when I encourage you to add whole foods to your diet! ;)

How Whole Foods Help You Lose Weight

Exercise isn’t the only way you can lose weight.

In fact, small changes to your diet can have a significant impact on your weight loss goals.

So many of us take the fast food route or we pick up foods at the supermarket that are easy to prepare.

The truth is that these foods aren’t any easier to prepare than whole foods and they cause a ton of health problems.

Adding whole foods to your diet can help you lose weight.

What Is A Whole Food?

A whole food is a food that is produced by nature – not in a factory. An apple is a whole food. Steel cut oats are a whole food.

The opposite of a whole food is a processed food. Generally, if the food you eat comes in a bag or a box (or from a drive through restaurant) it is a processed food.

One funny way that I use to define a whole food is to ask this question, “Would my great grandmother recognize this food?” If the answer is no then it’s probably not a whole food.

For example, boxed macaroni and cheese is not a whole food. Make it yourself with cheese, milk and pasta and you’re good to go. Grandma would approve!

Processed Foods Cause You to Gain Weight

One of the ways that whole foods help you lose weight is that they reverse the effects of processed foods.

Processed foods contain preservatives, additives, chemicals, artificial flavorings and artificial sweeteners. These chemicals have negative effects on your body. They cause inflammation or swelling – making you look bigger than you actually are!

They also cause you to retain water and store fat. And, most processed foods cause your blood sugar levels to spike and plummet, which causes insulin resistance – aka type 2 diabetes. And it causes cravings and low energy.

Whole Foods Help You Lose Weight

On the other hand, whole foods help keep your blood sugar balanced. They burn more slowly and your metabolism stays on a nice even keel.

Most whole foods are high in the f word – fiber. Fiber helps you feel full.

When you feel comfortably full, it’s easier to focus on your daily responsibilities, instead of food. It’s also much easier to feel energetic and motivated to exercise.

And whole foods provide an abundance of disease fighting benefits. The vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients found in whole foods have been shown to protect you against chronic diseases like cancer and heart disease.

Here a few ways to start adding whole foods to your daily diet:

1. Cook at home as much as possible using fresh, local, seasonal, and sustainably grown ingredients.
2. Try out a new healthy whole food ingredient every other week or so.
3. Get to know the “bins” at your grocery store – they are packed with nutritional (and affordable!) whole grains, legumes ,and more.
4. Drink water or sparkling water in place of soda.
5. Get rid of your “all-white” staples (white sugar, white flour, pasta, etc) and  start exploring new “whole” foods and ingredients.
6. Rethink your plate – when you look at it for each meal, is it balanced nutritionally? Does it have lots of color? Does it have vegetables, protein, whole grains? Good.

Start slowly if you need to. Replace one snack or meal each day with whole foods.

Whole foods are the best healthy food to eat while trying to lose weight. And they are an easy way to begin to make lasting lifestyle changes and achieve lasting weight loss!

Not sure where to start with whole foods? I’ve been there myself. Here is a great book that walks you through the ABCs of 100 of the healthiest whole foods. Plus there are over 500 EASY QUICK delicious recipes you can try.  Click Here to see all the best foods to eat to lose weight!

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