Foods that satisfy hunger


9 Top Foods That Will Definitely Keep You Full for Hours

Let’s get one thing straight from the beginning, healthy eating (especially with the goal of weight loss) doesn’t mean that you should be starving all of the time. In fact, you want to eat foods that keep your blood sugar at a steady level so you’re not left with those feelings of fatigue and intense hunger only a few hours after eating.

Your meals should leave you feeling full and satisfied. You shouldn’t feel hungry all the time even if you want to lose weight. While you might feel a bit of brain fog and a bit grumpy as your body works to eliminate all of the processed, sugar-filled foods you’ve previously been eating – as time goes on, you should really feel fulfilled by what you are eating.

What types of foods can make you feel full and satisfied without packing on the calories? We’re going to focus here on healthy fats and foods that are packed with fiber. In both cases, they are slow to digest, won’t spike your blood sugar, will give you energy and help keep your healthy eating habits in check. Why? Because, once again, you won’t be starving all the time.

9 Fiber & Protein-Rich Foods to Keep You Full

1. Handful of nuts or 1 Tbsp nut butter

Nuts are packed with healthy fats and protein. We’re talking about raw, unsalted nuts, not the sugar-coated ones. Go for almonds, cashews, walnuts, pistachios or Brazil nuts. You can grab a handful and throw them on a salad, have a handful as a snack or even take 1 Tbsp of nut butter and have it with an apple, banana or on a rice cake.

2. Chia seeds

Most of us are familiar with this powerful superfood! Most of the carbohydrates found in chia seeds are in the form of fiber (over 80%!) and in only 28g (1 oz), you’ll find 11 grams of fiber! Plus, when you add liquid to chia seeds, they expand and stick together to create this gel-like texture that is perfect for this Creamy Mango Chia Pudding recipe!

3. Quinoa

Fun fact: Did you know that quinoa isn’t a grain but in fact a seed? It’s gluten-free, a complete protein and, of course, packed with fiber as well. One cup (185 g) of cooked quinoa contains 5g of fiber and 8g of protein! Additionally, the carbohydrates found in quinoa are complex meaning that they take your body a bit more time to break down and will not significantly spike your blood sugar. Whip up this fruity quinoa salad recipe and bring it with you to work for lunch.

4. Lentils

Talk about a protein and fiber powerhouse! It’s no wonder they are a vegetarian and vegan diet staple. A serving of lentils (100g or ½ cup) contains 8g of fiber and 9g of protein! While lentils are one of the foods you’ll want to avoid before running, they are perfect for any other meal of the day.

5. Sweet potatoes

Whether you prefer to eat them sweet with a dash of cinnamon and raw honey or savory like these loaded sweet potato skins, sweet potatoes are a must-have on every menu no matter if you’re looking to lose weight or gain muscle. One medium sweet potato only has a little over 100 calories, but 4 grams of fiber! As an added bonus, it’s packed with vitamin A!

6. Hummus

Hummus makes a great dip for veggies and is a much healthier alternative to sour cream or other cream-based dips! It’s full of fiber and protein from the garbanzo beans and healthy fats coming from the tahini (sesame seed paste) that is mixed in as well. Only 100g of hummus provides 8g of protein and 4g of fiber! You can make your own or buy it at the store and use it as a dip or in this Hummus-Crusted Chicken & Vegetable recipe.

7. Avocado

Avocado (which is actually a berry!) is rich in monounsaturated fatty acids. These help to keep your heart and blood vessels healthy. The protein content, unlike most fruits and vegetables, is actually really high. Approximately 300g of avocado contains about 5g of protein while packing twice as much potassium as a large banana.

8. Broccoli

There’s a reason that mom always told you to finish all your broccoli! Broccoli is part of the cruciferous vegetable family which has been associated with a lower risk of cancer. One cup of chopped broccoli (approx. 91 grams) contains 2g of fiber and 3g of protein while providing over 100% of your daily need for vitamins C and K and is also a good source of vitamin A, folate and potassium.

9. Barley

Barley is the fiber winner among all whole grains! Only one cup of hulled barley contains whopping 16g of fiber. Barley also provides a high percentage of the daily requirement of manganese and selenium.


To avoid cravings, you should focus on foods that are high in protein and fiber. If you want to lose weight and keep your growling stomach quiet, opt for the healthy, unprocessed foods mentioned above to feel full.


The 30 Most Filling Healthy Snacks

If you typically have small healthy snacks before going out to eat, that’s definitely a smart move—and one that keeps you from ordering everything (healthy or not) off the menu the second you arrive. You see, the less ravenous you are when you sit down to a meal, the easier it will be to choose healthy snacks and foods that align with your better-body goals.

But that doesn’t mean you should reach for a piece of candy or some chips to quell your hunger. These types of snacks don’t provide any beneficial nutrients to your body and they won’t ward off hunger long enough to keep you from going overboard during mealtime.

Healthy filling snacks should have fewer than 250 calories and be rich in hunger-squashing nutrients like water, fiber, and protein. All of our weight-loss friendly snack recommendations below contain these slimming nutrients and are free of scary additives and chemicals.

And since it’s not always possible to fix a fresh snack, we’ve gathered both fresh and packaged options that are easy, healthy filling snacks to eat on the run. Ready to stock up your pantry? Great! But before you head to the store, skim these ways to save at the grocery store for the very best tips on losing weight—without lightening your wallet.

Homemade Healthy Filling Snacks

All of these simple, fresh bites can be pulled together in less than five minutes…


Avocado Toast

1 slice of Ezekiel bread, 1/4th avocado: 183 calories, 10 g fat (2.1 g saturated fat), 78 mg sodium, 19.3 g carbs (6.5 g fiber, 5 g protein

Avocado toast isn’t just for breakfast, guys. Thanks to its healthy fat, fiber, and protein content, the combo makes for a filling snack, too. To whip up a slice, toast a piece of Ezekiel or whole grain bread and top with chunky, mashed avocado. Sprinkle chili pepper flakes and a light drizzle of olive oil. For more tasty avocado ideas, check out these avocado recipes for weight loss.

Did You Know?!

Avocados are packed with something called monounsaturated fat, a type of fat that can prevent body fat from forming around the belly.

RELATED: Get lean for life with this 14-day flat belly plan.


Snap Peas with Hummus

1 cup snap peas, 1/4th cup hummus: 221 calories, 6.6 g fat (1 g saturated fat), 244 mg sodium, 30 g carbs (11 g fiber, 8 g sugar), 13 g protein

Veggies and hummus make for the perfect healthy snacks. Not only does the crunch help to keep you alert through the mid-afternoon slump, but the combination of fiber, protein, and water (snap peas are 90 percent H2O) is also sure to keep your stomach satisfied until suppertime. To ensure your snack remains diet friendly, plan to stick to one of our go-to hummus choices.



1 cup: 64 calories, 0.8 g fat (0 g saturated fat), 4.6 g carbs (5.4 g sugar), 1 g protein, 8 g fiber

Raspberries may be small, but they’re awful mighty—think of them as nature’s magical weight loss pill. Packing more fiber and liquid than most other fruits, they boost feelings of satiety without doing any damage to your waistline. Eat them solo or throw them in a Greek yogurt for creamy, more protein-rich healthy snacks.


Protein Roll Up

1 tsp. hummus, 1 oz deli turkey, 1 slice Swiss cheese, thick tomato slice: 149 calories, 9 g fat (5 g saturated fat), 412 mg sodium, 4.4. g carbs (1 g fiber, 1.5 g sugar), 11.7 g protein

Think of this as a flavorful sandwich minus the bread. To make a protein-filled roll up, lay a slice of Swiss cheese on a cutting board. Top with a slice of turkey, a thick tomato slice, and a spoonful of hummus. Wrap like a jelly roll and enjoy.

Eat This Tip!

Sick of your post-workout protein shake? Make this roll up without the cheese (its fat content will slow the absorption of the nutrients your body needs to recover) and pair it with an apple. The combination of protein and carbs is just what your muscles need post-pump. For even more recovery ideas, check out what fitness trainers eat after a workout.



1 medium fruit: 105 calories, 0.4 g fat (0.1 g saturated fat), 1 mg sodium, 27 g carbs (3.1 g fiber, 14 g sugar), 1.3 g protein

Not only can the humble banana’s water and fiber content keep you away from the vending machine (75 percent of the fruit is pure water), each one comes with a free carrying case, so you can grab it and go! The ultimate in healthy snacks!


Ants on a Log

3 celery stalks, 2 tbsp. peanut butter, 1 tbsp raisins: 233 calories, 16 g fat (3.4 g saturated fat), 189 mg sodium, 15 g carbs (3 g fiber, 9 g sugar), 9 g protein

To make this high-protein childhood favorite, slather celery with smooth or chunky peanut butter and then top it off with raisins. But before you whip up this tasty snack, you might want to find out where your favorite PB falls on our exclusive list of popular peanut butters—ranked to make sure it’s a good-for-you pick.



95 calories, 0.3 g fat (0 g saturated fat), 2 mg sodium, 25 g carbs (4.5 g fiber, 19 g sugar), 0.5 g protein

As one of the easiest fruits to eat on the run, apples are one of our go-to snacks. The best time to eat one? As pre-meal healthy snacks. According to Penn State University researchers, munching on an apple before a meal can reduce overall calorie consumption by 15 percent! If that doesn’t convince you to add them to your healthy snack time lineup, we’re not sure what will.


Homemade Cheese Herb Popcorn

189 calories, 8 g fat (4.6 g saturated fat), 265 mg sodium, 21 g carbs (6 g fiber, 12 g protein

A potent source of fiber and filling whole grains, popcorn makes for satisfyingly delicious healthy snacks. But pop the wrong kennels and you could be doing your body more harm than good. Many major brands of microwave popcorn, for example, line their bags with perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), the same stuff found in Teflon pots and pans; some studies have linked it to infertility, weight gain, and impaired learning. Thankfully pulling together a healthier snack is a simple task. Simply add 2 tablespoons (which yields about 2 ½ cups popped) of your favorite popping kernels to a small paper lunch bag and fold the top down a few times. Then, zap it in the microwave until you hear only a few pops every five seconds. While still hot, toss the popcorn with a half cup grated Parmesan and rosemary.


Peanut Butter Stuffed Dates

2 dates, 2 tbsp. peanut butter: 250 calories, 16 g fat (3 g saturated fat), 148 mg sodium, 25 g carbs (4 g fiber, 19 g sugar), 9 g protein

It may be hard to believe, but this salty-sweet combo serves up as much protein as a cup of milk and as much fiber as an apple. Making it is super simple, too. Just split open the date, remove the seed and top each half with your favorite all-natural nut butter. For some added flavor and texture, you can even sprinkle on some unsweetened coconut flakes. Yum!


Snack-Sized Berry Spinach Smoothie

1 serving: 230 calories, 2.5 g fat (20 g carbs (5 g fiber, 7 g sugar), 26 g protein

Short on time? Blend up a small, snack-sized smoothie. Registered dietitian Kristin Reisinger gave us one of her go-to recipes—which features fibrous berries and filling protein powder—for our New York Times bestselling book, Zero Belly Smoothies, and it makes for the perfect filling treat. To make it, toss ½ cup of mixed frozen berries, a handful of spinach, 8-ounces of almond milk, and vanilla protein powder into a blender, and combine until smooth. For more tasty blends, be sure to get your copy of the book today!


Cottage Cheese with Pineapple

1/2 cup 1% cottage cheese, 1/2 cup pineapple: 143 calories, 2.3 g fat (1.4 g saturated fat), 460 mg sodium, 15 g carbs (1 g fiber, 8.5 g sugar), 16 g protein

Sick of Greek yogurt? Break open a container of low-sodium cottage cheese and top it with some sweet yellow pineapple. So long as you stick to a half-cup serving of each, you’ll craft protein-packed healthy snacks that contain less than 150 calories! If you want some added flavor, top your bowl with some low-sugar or no-sugar-added coconut chips. The combination of flavors is reminiscent of a piña colada!


Apricot Canapes

5 dried apricots, 3 teaspoons crumbled blue cheese, 5 pistachios, ¼ teaspoon honey: 137 calories, 5 g fat (1.8 g saturated fat), 139 mg sodium, 22 g carbs (4 g fiber, 17 g sugar), 5 g protein

It may look like a fancy appetizer, but this snack comes together in mere minutes. To pull it together, lay 5 dried apricots on a plate, smear each one with some crumbled blue cheese, and then sprinkle with some chopped pistachios and honey. With 5 grams of fiber and a ton of flavor, these healthy snacks are sure to keep your energy levels soaring.


Almond Butter and Peach Toast

1 tbsp. almond butter, 1 slice Ezekiel bread, 1/2 peach: 200 calories, 8.7 g fat (0.5 g saturated fat), 75 mg sodium, 25 g carbs (6 g fiber, 8 g sugar), 8 g protein

While pairing almond butter with peaches may seem like an odd combination, we can assure you that the salty and sweet mix is a pleasing one. After you’ve toasted the protein-packed Ezekiel bread, simply smear on the nut butter, and top it off with some fresh peach slices—super easy!


Dark Chocolate with Nut Butter

1 tbsp. peanut butter, 5 pieces dark chocolate: 202 calories, 17 g fat (7 g saturated fat), 82 mg sodium, 9 g carbs (3 g fiber, 4 g sugar), 6 g protein

This naughty-sounding snack duo is actually super low-sugar and satiating. In their purest forms, both peanut butter and dark chocolate are superfoods overflowing with nutrients. We adore Green & Black’s Organic Dark Chocolate 85% Cacao Bar for its high fiber count and low sugar content. When selecting a nut butter, look for something that contains just two ingredients: nuts and salt. If you see anything else printed on the label, there’s a very good chance it’s not a health food.


‘Cheesecake’ in a Bowl

1/3 cup part-skim ricotta, 4 strawberries, 1 teaspoon honey, 1 crumbled graham cracker: 210 calories, 8 g fat (4 g saturated fat), 189 mg sodium, 24 g carbs (2 g fiber, 13 g sugar), 11 g protein

While cheesecake is far from a meeting a healthy snacks standard, this combo of flavors is an entirely different story. While the ricotta lends a creamy texture reminiscent of the light and fluffy dessert (not to mention loads of protein!), the graham crackers and honey provide sweetness and a crust-like crunch. If you’re not a big fan of strawberries, feel free to sub in any other fruit you feel would be pleasing. Blueberries, kiwi, or a mix of various berries are all delicious and filling alternatives thanks to their high water and fiber content.

Store-Bought Healthy Filling Snacks

Sometimes you just need to grab something and go. These packaged eats can all be tossed in a bag and enjoyed on the run…


Rhythm Superfoods Carrot Sticks

1 bag (40 g): 150 calories, 2.5 g fat (1.5 g saturated fat), 310 mg sodium, 28 g carbs (11 g fiber, 6 g sugar), 3 g protein

Not only are carrots a great source of potassium and vitamin A, but they’re also packed with over a third of the day’s worth of satiating fiber and 3 grams of hunger-quelling protein. While raw carrots may be a bit harder to eat on-the-go because they’re perishable, this packaged, seasoned variety can be easily noshed just about anywhere.



Siggi’s Icelandic Style 4% Yogurt Vanilla

1 container: 120 calories, 5 g fat (3 g saturated fat), 40 mg sodium, 9 g carbs (0 g fiber, 8 g sugar), 10 g protein

Although just about every yogurt is a good source of calcium and protein, few other flavored varieties are so low in sugar. Siggi’s uses Madagascar bourbon vanilla in lieu of traditional additives and sweeteners to produce healthy snacks that have a deliciously sweet flavor and won’t derail your weight loss efforts. (For us, it was love at first bite!) We reach for whole milk yogurts because they’re uber filling and tend to have more protein and less sugar than their leaner versions. In fact, a 4 percent yogurt is one of these best full-fat foods for weight loss.



Bolthouse Farms Veggie Snackers Carrot Meets Ranch

1 pouch: 25 calories, 0 g fat (0 g saturated fat), 200 mg sodium, 6 g carbs (2 g fiber, 4 g sugar), 1 g protein

Carrots are one of the most satiating veggies out there, according to Australian researchers—likely due to their high water content. These healthy snacks come with a handful of carrots and a package of seasonings, which punches up the flavor like dips and dressings without the excess calories or fat. Need more calories to power through until your next meal? Pair this savory snack with one or two of these best snacks under 50 calories.


Seapoint Farms Dry Roasted Edamame, Sea Salt, 100 Calorie Snack Pack

1 pouch: 100 calories, 3 g fat (0.5 g saturated fat), 115 mg sodium, 8 g carbs (6 g fiber, 1 g sugar), 10 g protein

If you like noshing on nuts and seeds, you’re bound to enjoy dry-roasted edamame. Besides having a satisfyingly crunchy texture and a slightly salty taste, is provides 11 grams of soy protein and six grams of belly-filling fiber in each 100-calorie serving—it doesn’t get much better than that!



Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Brown Sugar & Maple Oatmeal Cup

1 cup (61 g): 240 calories, 5 g fat (1 g saturated fat), 310 mg sodium, 42 g carbs (7 g fiber, 10 g sugar), 7 g protein

This may look like your average cup of oats, but it’s worth a second glance. Made with a blend of whole gluten-free rolled oats, chia seeds, and flax seeds—an uber filling trio not typically found in oatmeal—this Bob’s Red Mill creation is the perfect blank canvas for just about any healthy filling snacks time creation. Top off your bowl with some nuts or a half-cup of raspberries for an additional 4 grams of satiating fiber.



Pacific Organic Roasted Red Pepper & Tomato Soup

1 cup (8 oz): 130 calories, 3.5 g fat (2 g saturated fat), 720 mg sodium, 19 g carbs (2 g fiber, 15 g sugar), 6 g protein

According to a Purdue University study, slurping soup keeps people fuller longer than solid foods. While we wouldn’t suggest living on soup alone, it’s gaining some traction as an easier—and delicious—way to detox and boost weight loss results. We like Pacific’s slow-roasted red pepper variety because it provides a dose of bone-building calcium and can easily be stored, opened and warmed in an office break room.



Emerald Natural Almonds 100 Calorie Packs

1 packet: 100 calories, 9 g fat (0.5 g saturated fat), 0 mg sodium, 4 g carbs (2 g fiber 1 g sugar), 4 g protein

This snack-sized serving of almonds serves up more protein and fiber than other similar nut blends. Plus, each pouch provides 25 percent of the day’s vitamin E, a nutrient that boosts immunity and helps maintain skin and eye health.



Blue Moose, Lemon Turmeric On The Go Hummus

1 container: 140 calories, 6 g fat (0.5 g saturated fat), 160 mg sodium, 18 g carbs (5 g fiber, 3 g sugar), 4 g protein

This gluten-free mini meal is comprised of crunchy carrot sticks and a flavorful, creamy hummus that’s packed with fiber. Enjoy this hunger-taming duo as a healthy road trip or mid-afternoon office healthy snack.



Beanitos Original Black Bean Chips with Sea Salt

1 oz: 130 calories, 7 g fat (0.5 g saturated fat), 120 mg sodium, 15 g carbs (4 g fiber, 1 g sugar), 5 g protein

If no one told you these chips were made from navy beans, brown rice, oils, and spices, you’d never be the wiser. This healthy snack time favorite has a texture and flavor reminiscent of traditional crisps. The primary difference? Beanitos will fill you up without filling you out. Pair it with a bean dip to boost satiety even more. We like Desert Pepper’s black bean variety.



KIND Nuts & Spices Bar, Madagascar Vanilla Almond

1 bar: 200 calories, 15 g fat (1.5 g saturated fat), 15 mg sodium, 15 g carbs (6 g fiber, 4 g sugar), 6 g protein

The high fiber and protein content isn’t the only good thing about this bar. It also has fat-blasting Madagascar vanilla, which is a potent source of oleic fatty acids, monounsaturated fats that can help reduce appetite and promote weight loss. To see how all of your favorite KIND bars stack up in terms of nutrition, check out our special report, Every KIND Bar—Ranked!



Iconic Lean Ready-to-Drink Protein Shake

1 bottle, 11.5 fl oz: 130 calories, 2 g fat (0 g saturated fat), 220 mg sodium, 8 g carbs (4 g fiber, 3 g sugar), 20 g protein

Full of sweeteners, toxic contaminants, chemical additives, and trans fat, many protein powder labels read like the stock list of a chemistry lab. But not this pre-made protein drink. Made with natural ingredients like grass-fed milk protein isolate, cocoa powder, organic agave, and sea salt, this is one of the better bottles in the supplement store. Not to mention, it has more protein than three hard boiled eggs which practically ensures it will keep you full and satisfied for hours between meals.



Enjoy Life Foods Chocolate Protein Bites, Dark Raspberry

3 pieces: 170 calories, 10 g fat (5 g saturated fat), 10 mg sodium, 17 g carbs (2 g fiber, 11 g sugar), 6 g protein

While protein and snack bars can be healthy snacks for busy folks, sometimes you just want to slowly pick at something—like these small, chocolate raspberry protein bites. Not only do we like that you can grab three of these bites instead of committing to an entire bar, we’re also digging the clean ingredient label that’s common-allergen-free. The protein in this snack comes from sunflower protein, which explains the slow digesting (read: filling) protein and healthy fats.



The New Primal Spicy Beef Jerky

1 oz (½ package), 90 calories, 2.5 g fat (1 g saturated fat), 250 mg sodium, 5 g carbs (0 g fiber, 3 g sugar), 12 g protein

Made with omega-3-rich grass-fed beef, and flavored with pineapple juice, coconut aminos, honey, lemon juice, jalapeno peppers, cayenne, and other delicious herbs and spices, this jerky is one of the cleanest options you’ll find at the market. Pair it with a piece of fiber-rich fruit like an apple or a pear to add some filling fiber to your snack-time lineup.



Biena Chickpea Snacks, Sea Salt

1.2 oz: 150 calories, 5 g fat (0 g saturated fat), 200 mg sodium, 21 g carbs (8 g fiber, 0 g sugar), 7 g protein

These dried chickpeas are downright addictive. Luckily for you, they’re low in calories and sugar and loaded with fiber and protein. Snag a bag in every flavor. From Honey Roasted to Rockin’ Ranch, they’re all delicious—and are a welcomed break from raw nuts.



I Heart Keenwah Quinoa Clusters, Chocolate Sea Salt

1 oz: 130 calories, 6 g fat (1.5 g saturated fat), 105 mg sodium, 17 g carbs (2 g fiber, 6 g sugar), 3 g protein

Quinoa isn’t just for your dinner plate anymore. Breakfast quinoa bowls and snacks made with the super grain have been trending for awhile now. We love that this bite-sized snack is wholesome and free of scary additives, yet taste like sweet, sinful treats.


Get the New Book!

Want to lose 10, 20, even 30 pounds—all without dieting?! Get your copy of Eat This, Not That: The Best (& Worst) Foods in America!, and learn how to indulge smarter and lose weight fast!

7 Stop Hunger Foods

Weight Loss

Always feeling hungry but wanting to resist the need for snacking? These 7 foods will help keep you feeling feel full for longer so you can resist that urge.

Always feeling hungry but wanting to resist the need for snacking? These 7 foods will help keep you feeling feel full for longer so you can resist that urge.

Despite how healthy our diets can be, sometimes no amount of salad can satisfy our hunger and we just need that little bit extra to keep us going. But when on a diet or eating healthily, it can be difficult to find foods that both satisfy hunger and keep the calories low. Luckily there are some foods that a both filling and nutritious, proving a relief for our growling stomachs when trying to shed some weight.



Ask any health site or nutritionist and they will consistently recommend porridge, oatmeal and a variety of oats as a healthy but filling food, particularly for the start of the day. Porridge oats have a very low G.I, Glycemic Index, meaning that the glucose from the carb is released into your bloodstream slowly, sustaining your energy levels for a longer time and preventing those post breakfast food cravings.

Porridge oats have a very low Glycemic Index, meaning that the glycogen from the carb is released into your bloodstream slowly…

Oats are high in fibre which keeps your blood sugar levels balanced unlike other sugary breakfasts, and also have an amazing ability to absorb any fluids efficiently, passing through your digestive tract at a very slow rate.

Porridge is also a great food to fill you up due to its consistency; it’s been found that wetter and creamier foods switch on satisfaction signals and so improve satiety. What’s more, studies show that a bowl of porridge can also lower cholesterol. If a bowl of oatmeal doesn’t excite your taste buds, adding some nuts, fruit, cinnamon, honey, peanut butter and any other ingredients can be a tasty addition whilst providing their own nutritional and filling benefits.



One of popcorn’s most appealing qualities is the fact that it’s a whole grain, making it rich in fibre and protein; four cups providing around 3 grams of each nutrient. But the best feature of popcorn is its volume, being mostly air, popcorn and other airy snack such as rice cakes, serve as a lighter choice calorie wise, but still serve as a filling snack. A 25g (0.9oz) serving of popcorn will fill a much bigger bowl compared the same weight in crisps — plus there’s less fat too, and when eaten popcorn also takes up a vast amount of space in your stomach.

Plain air-popped popcorn seasoned with whatever seasoning takes your fancy is the perfect way to fill up with a healthy snack instead of alternatives such as crisps and pretzels. Cayenne pepper, cinnamon, a touch of salt, whatever satisfied your cravings, can all be used to add flavour to popcorn, setting you back less than 150 calories, though it is best to stay away from packed butter and toffee popcorns as they can be deceivingly unhealthy.


Apples, oranges and pears

Apples and other fruits such as pears and oranges are a great food to keep hunger at bay as they are full or fibre and natural sugars, serving as a useful source of sustainable energy. Studies have also suggested that they can make a good pre-meal snack; research showing that eating an apple 20 minutes prior to a eating a meal reduces the amount eaten during that meal. So, enjoying fruits as your daily snack will not only contribute to one of your daily recommended fruit or veg portions, but the fibre will fill up your stomach and should keep those hunger pangs at bay.

Oranges are another super-fruit when it comes to satiety index and are almost twice as filling as bananas for the same amount of calories. Oranges are 86 per cent water and research shows that foods with high water content can help to improve our satiety due to the increased portion size, without impairing the calorie content. Apples and pears particularly contain pectin which slows digestion and encourages satiety, whilst still providing an array of nutrition needed throughout the body.



Eggs aren’t as low in calories compared to the other food mentioned so far, but due to their high protein content, being one of the few complete proteins that contain all 9 amino acids, eggs are a great addition to anyone’s diet. Once ingested, these amino acids trigger the hormones in the gut that suppress appetite, achieving that satisfied feeling. Protein is ideal for satisfying hunger but is also essential for the body’s optimum growth and maintenance of lean, metabolically active muscle tissue.

Eggs…can greatly assist keeping the hunger at bay and maintain steady blood sugar levels.

Each egg, containing about 140 calories and 12 grams of protein, can greatly assist keeping the hunger at bay and maintain steady blood sugar levels. But don’t feel like you have to discard the yolk, as the majority of its protein is contained in the yolk, a combination with meats and vegetables won’t impact your waistline but instead provide a filling snack or meal at any point in the day.



Soup is one of the ideal lunches and snack you can have to satisfy hunger, endless choices and options catering to different tastes, whilst containing a mass of ingredients that each provide a multitude of health benefits. Soup is also deceivingly slow to digest, passing through the digestive system slower that you would think, filling up your stomach with fluid and vegetables that are broken down slowly.

Starting a meal with a hearty soup is a great fill-up strategy, as much research that suggests eating soup before a meal improves satiety, causing you to eat less and consume fewer calories as a result. You need to be careful on your soup selection though; your best options are homemade and broth-based soups as you have control over the ingredients and can even include other filling foods such as potatoes, lentils and beans, each known for their filling effect. If you do choose a pre-made soup, make sure you check out the nutritional information as manufacturers will frequently sneak in unnecessary salt and sugars which can be counterproductive.


Yogurt (greek) and smoothies

Fruits obviously have many weight benefits, being a health option for rich nutrition and high fibre with low calorie count, but blending and combining them with yogurts and smoothies is an ideal way to add some calcium and fill the void growing in your stomach. Berries particularly can be a great addition to some yogurt or smoothies, providing an extra source of nutrition and energy as they are surprisingly low in sugars, but high in fibre compared to other fruits. Unlike most drinks, smoothies can be a great way to satisfy hunger as their thicker consistency and rich nutritional content slows the digestive system and passes out of the stomach slowly.

Adding some greek yogurt to your smoothie or on its own is another productive way to keep the hunger pangs at bay. Being high in protein, these amino acids slow the digestive system and keep you away from the cupboards for longer. Containing double the protein and half the sugar as regular yogurts, greek yogurt can be a great addition, easily combined with other foods as a healthy snack though the day.



Avocado is famous for its high fat content, but don’t let that fool you, this is the good kind of fat! Monounsaturates found in avocados, are considered as helpful fats that reduce cholesterol by increasing the high-density lipoproteins found in the blood, significantly reducing the risk of cardiovascular diseases and even help with other problems such as arthritis.

Avocados also increase the absorption of fat-soluble nutrients, helping your body fully utilise any food put into it. But in relation to satiety, the high healthy-fat and fibre content slow the digestive system, increasing satisfaction and releasing energy relatively slowly. Whether in a sandwich or salad, made into guacamole or tossed into an omelet, there are many ways that avocados can be included into your diet to reduce hunger and control weight.

Including these foods into your diet will be a great addition to your weight loss, helping you curb hunger and keep your body fully fueled and satisfied with its needed nutrients. Exploring different combinations and recipes for these foods that fill you up, is a great idea to keep you meals and snacks exciting but healthy.


Thinkstock Photos


Appetite: “Incorporation of air into a snack food reduces energy intake,” “A diet rich in long chain omega-3 fatty acids modulates satiety in overweight and obese volunteers during weight loss,” “The satiating effects of eggs or cottage cheese are similar in healthy subjects despite differences in postprandial kinetics,” “Dietary fibres in the regulation of appetite and food intake. Importance of viscosity.”

CDC: “Eat More, Weight Less?” “Why is it important to eat vegetables?”

Mayo Clinic: “Dietary fats: Know which types to choose,” “Chart of high-fiber foods.”

Cleveland Clinic: “Nuts and Heart Health.”

European Journal of Clinical Nutrition: “The relationship between high-fat dairy consumption and obesity, cardiovascular, and metabolic disease,” “Soups increase satiety through delayed gastric emptying yet increased glycaemic response.”

Harvard School of Public Health: “Healthy Eating Plate & Healthy Eating Pyramid,” “Carbohydrates and Blood Sugar.”

Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: “Salad and satiety: Energy density and portion size of a first-course salad affect energy intake at lunch.”

Journal of the American College of Nutrition: “Instant Oatmeal Increases Satiety and Reduces Energy Intake Compared to a Ready-to-Eat Oat-Based Breakfast Cereal: A Randomized Crossover Trial.”

National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases: “Health Risks of Being Overweight.”

NIH News In Health: “Don’t Just Sit There! Move for Your Health.”

Nutrients: “Egg and Egg-Derived Foods: Effects on Human Health and Use as Functional Foods.”

Nutrition and Diabetes: “Patterns of dairy food intake, body composition and markers of metabolic health in Ireland: results from the National Adult Nutrition Survey.”

Nutrition Journal: “Avocado consumption is associated with better diet quality and nutrient intake, and lower metabolic syndrome risk in US adults: results from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) 2001–2008.”

Obesity: “Dietary pulses, satiety and food intake: A systematic review and meta-analysis of acute feeding trials.”

Plant Foods For Human Nutrition: “Physiological Effects Associated with Quinoa Consumption and Implications for Research Involving Humans: a Review.”

PLOS Medicine: “Sleep, Appetite, and Obesity—What Is the Link?”

The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition: “A review of the effects of nuts on appetite, food intake, metabolism, and body weight.”

British Nutrition Foundation: “Understanding satiety: feeling full after a meal.”

Whole Grains Council: “Benefits of Quinoa.” “The Secret to Serving Size Is in Your Hand.”

The 10 Most Filling Foods for Weight Loss

If you were to describe The Perfect Food, it might go something like this: healthful, delicious, bigger than a morsel and filling enough to fight hunger for hours. “Foods that promote satiety”—a feeling of lasting fullness—”do exist,” insists David Katz, MD, founder of the Yale University Prevention Research Center. What makes some grub extra satisfying? “Fiber and protein can help,” says Barbara Rolls, PhD, author of The Ultimate Volumetrics Diet. Getting more bang for your bite matters, too: Low-energy-density foods, which yield big portions for few calories, “allow you to eat more without gaining weight,” Rolls says. Want some of that? Make room for these secret-weapon picks.

Baked potato

The potato has been unfairly demonized—it’s actually a potent hunger tamer. In a study that measured the satiating index of 38 foods, including brown rice and whole-wheat bread, people ranked boiled potatoes highest, reporting that they felt fuller and ate less two hours after consuming them. Though potatoes are often shunned because they’re considered high in carbohydrates, they shouldn’t be. Whether baked or boiled, they’re loaded with vitamins, fiber and other nutrients. Result? You get steady energy and lasting fullness after noshing on them.

Feel even fuller: Eat baked and boiled tubers skin-on to get more fiber for just 160 calories a pop. The 25 Best Diet Tricks of All Time


A study from Saint Louis University found that folks who ate eggs for breakfast consumed 330 fewer calories throughout the day than those who had a bagel. “Eggs are one of the few foods that are a complete protein, meaning they contain all nine essential amino acids that your body can’t make itself,” says Joy Dubost, RD, spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. “Once digested, those amino acids trigger the release of hormones in your gut that suppress appetite.”

Feel even fuller: Don’t discard the yolks—about half an egg’s protein lives in those yellow parts. Adding vegetables to a scramble boosts its volume and fiber content for few extra calories (an egg has 78, and a cup of spinach just 7). The 20 Best Foods to Eat for Breakfast

Bean soup

“Soups have a high water content, which means they fill your stomach for very few calories,” says Rolls. Broth-based bean soups, in particular, contain a hefty dose of fiber and resistant starch—a good carb that slows the release of sugar into the bloodstream—to make that full feeling really stick. “Once in the stomach, fiber and water activate stretch receptors that signal that you aren’t hungry anymore,” Rolls says. All this for a measly 150 calories per cup.

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Feel even fuller: Resist the cracker pack on the side in favor of a bigger soup helping. Beans are starchy, satisfying and caloric enough on their own, Rolls says. Hate soup? Throw lentils, black-eyed peas or kidney or navy beans into a vinegar-based salad. 16 Ways to Lose Weight Fast

Greek yogurt

Harvard researchers examined the eating habits of 120,000 people for 20 years and found that yogurt was the single best food for shedding pounds: Over time, people who downed more of the protein-packed stuff lost pounds without trying. Meanwhile, a Nestlé Nutrition Institute study review found that consuming dairy proteins increases satiety, reduces food intake and keeps blood sugar steady. “Greek yogurt, which is strained to remove liquid whey, contains double the protein and less sugar than regular yogurt,” Dubost says.

Feel even fuller: Top yogurt with fibrous foods like raspberries (4 grams of fiber per half cup) or a cereal such as Kashi Go Lean Crisp Cinnamon Crumble (9 grams per three quarters of a cup).

Apples are one of the few fruits that contain pectin, which naturally slows digestion and promotes a feeling of fullness, according to a study in Gastroenterology. In fact, people who ate an apple as part of a meal felt more satiated and ate less than those who consumed a calorically equivalent amount of juice and applesauce. “Whole apples take a long time to eat for very few calories,” says Susan Roberts, PhD, professor of nutrition at Tufts University. Your body has more time to tell your brain that you’re no longer hungry. That means you can eat lots of this low-energy-density, high-satiety fruit and avoid feeling deprived while losing weight, adds Roberts.

Feel even fuller: Add apple chunks to oatmeal or salad, or slices to a turkey-on-whole-wheat sandwich.


This movie-night fave is a low-energy-density food—for 90 calories, you could eat 3 cups of air-popped corn but just a quarter cup of potato chips. “Popcorn takes up more room in your stomach, and seeing a big bowl of it in front of you tricks you into thinking that you’re eating more calories and that you’ll feel full when you’re finished,” Rolls says.

Feel even fuller: Sprinkle on some red pepper. In a recent Purdue University study, people who added a half teaspoon of the spice to a meal felt less hungry.

QUIZ: Should You Eat This or That?Which is better for you: Half cup of ice cream or 3 scoops of sorbet? Getty Images (4) Answer: A half cup of ice cream If you eat what you’re craving, you’re more likely to feel satisfied and eat less. And scoop for scoop sorbet contains twice the sugar with none of the filling dairy protein and fat. Getty Images (5); Gif by Mia Tramz for TIME Which is better for you: Real butter or spray on fake butter? Getty Images; Tara Johnson for TIME Answer: Butter Serving size for spray butters (even low-calorie ones) are around a 1/3 second spray. What on earth does that mean? You’re better off using a small amount of real butter as opposed to guessing how much you’re using of the mystery melange of up to 20 ingredients. Getty Images (1); Gif by Mia Tramz for TIME Which is better for you: A turkey burger or a sirloin burger? Getty Images (2) Answer: Sirloin burger Restaurant turkey burgers are often made with dark meat and the skin, so they’re not necessarily better for you (and for the record, they aren’t low-fat). You can get a sirloin burger that’s 95% lean meat and gives you 20 g of protein. Just be careful with the toppings. Getty Images (1); Gif by Mia Tramz for TIME Which is better for you: Almonds or pretzels? Getty Images (2) Answer: Almonds Almonds are high in protein, fiber and fat and will keep you feeling fuller longer. Give high-sodium pretzels about an hour and you’ll feel hungry again thanks to the high-carb no-fat or protein content. Getty Images (1); Gif by Mia Tramz for TIME Which is better for you: Special K or eggs? AP; Getty Images Answer: Eggs In the morning, you want a meal that will fill you up. Eggs offer protein and fat for satiety, but Special K cereal really only offers carbs and, well, air. If you want carbs to kick off the day, you’re better off pairing eggs with a slice of 100% whole grain toast. Getty Images (1); Gif by Mia Tramz for TIME Which is better for you: Fat free salad dressing or regular salad dressing? Tara Johnson for TIME Answer: Regular salad dressingTo absorb fat soluble vitamins like Vitamins E and K in vegetables you need to consume them with a fat to aid nutrient absorption. Fat-free dressing, meanwhile, is low-calorie but gets its flavor from added sugar and salt. Tara Johnson for TIME (5); Gif by Mia Tramz for TIME Which is better for you: A low fat cookie or dark chocolate? Getty Images (2) Answer: Dark chocolate “People believe fat free is calorie free,” says Keri Gans, a registered dietitian in New York City. “Go for the real thing.” Fat free cookies tend to be high in carbs, sugar and fake sugar. Try a nice piece of antioxidant-rich dark chocolate instead. Getty Images (2); Gif by Mia Tramz for TIME Which is better for you: Low fat Greek yogurt or 100 calorie Yoplait yogurt? Tara Johnson for TIME Answer: 2% Greek YogurtA little fat is good in the morning to keep you full—plus it has upwards of 17g of protein per container. Fat-free “fruit” yogurt is high in sugar—7 to 10 g per serving—and lower in protein. Tara Johnson for TIME (2); Gif by Mia Tramz for TIME 1 of 16 Advertisement


A great natural cure for a sweet tooth, fresh figs have a dense consistency and sweet flesh that’s high in fiber (each 37-calorie fig packs about a gram), which slows the release of sugar into the blood, preventing the erratic high caused by cookies or cake.

Feel even fuller: Halve and add protein, like a teaspoon of goat cheese and a walnut. 13 Comfort Foods That Burn Fat


Oatmeal’s filling force comes from its high fiber content and its uncanny ability to soak up liquid like a sponge. When cooked with water or skim milk, the oats thicken and take more time to pass through your digestive system, meaning you’ll go longer between hunger pangs.

Feel even fuller: Sprinkle almonds on top of your bowl. “The nuts pack protein and fiber and contain unsaturated fats that can help stabilize insulin levels,” regulating blood sugar, Dr. Katz says.
Wheat berries

Move over, quinoa. Wheat berries, which are whole-wheat kernels, contain one of the highest amounts of protein and fiberß per serving of any grain—6 grams of protein and 6 grams of fiber. “Protein triggers the hormone ghrelin to tell our brain that we are satisfied,” Roberts explains, “and fiber activates appetite-suppressing gut hormones.”

Feel even fuller: Do what celeb chef Ellie Krieger, RD, does: Toss wheat berries with apples, nuts and other diet-friendly foods to make a super tasty salad (that’s her recipe at right).


While most beverages don’t satisfy hunger very well, drinks blended full of air are an exception: They cause people to feel satiated and eat less at their next meal, according to a Penn State University study. Just be sure you’re not whipping your smoothie full of sugary, caloric ingredients like fruit juices or flavored syrups, which will negate the health benefits.

Feel even fuller: Put ice and fat-free milk or yogurt in a blender, add in fruit and give it a whirl. Try strawberries, which are extremely low in energy density—they’re 92 percent water!—and bananas, which are loaded with resistant starch.

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The reason a lot of people struggle when trying to lose weight is because they choose low calorie foods instead of reaching for a more filling food.

Do I have your attention? Did you think low calorie foods are the secret to losing weight?!

Yeah, well the problem with a lot of low calorie foods is that they don’t keep you feeling full for long. If you’re hungry within an hour of eating, it’s going to be hard to concentrate on anything other than food until your next meal. And if you haven’t planned a healthy snack in between meals, you’re more likely to veer into the drive-thru or pop by the vending machine for a less-than-nourishing snack.

The key to eating for weight loss is to choose the most filling foods, to keep you feeling full for several hours. So let’s look at nine examples of these foods (in no particular order).

#9 Most Filling Food: Greek Yogurt

Greek yogurt is such a filling food because of its protein content. Protein is the top nutrient to choose for satiety. It slows down the emptying of your stomach and suppresses your appetite.

The determining feature between regular and Greek yogurt is the protein content. But, there’s no legal minimum protein requirement in order to call a yogurt ‘Greek.’ Manufacturers can put the title on any yogurt. Look for a Greek yogurt that contains a minimum of 8-10g of protein (per 100g serving).

One of my favourite ways to eat Greek yogurt is in a smoothie. Try this filling Chocolate Peanut Butter Smoothie!

#8 Most Filling Food: Soup

Soup is not only easy to make in huge quantities, it’s also one of the most filling foods out there. Eating soup is almost magical for suppressing your appetite. I say magical because researchers have found something about soup that’s hard to explain: if you take the same amount of water and food ingredients that are found in a soup, and eat them separately, you won’t feel as full as if you had just eaten the soup.

Another benefit of soup can be attributed to a phenomenon called volumetric eating. The idea is simple: people tend to eat the same volume of food each day. If you add water into your food, you dilute it and eat less!

If weight loss is your goal, choosing a broth-based soup will have a larger impact than a heavy, cream-based soup.

Try this African Peanut Soup for a quick, filling meal!

#7 Most Filling Food: Chia Seeds

Chia seeds are my secret weapon, because you can add them to many types of foods, and convert any old recipe into an incredibly filling recipe!

The power of chia seeds is that they’re able to bind 9x their weight in water. This may not sound that impressive, but while they’re in your digestive system, the water helps the seeds form a gel with other foods you’ve eaten. Your body first has to break down this gel matrix before it can digest and absorb any food. The end result is a slow, sustained digestion. You feel fuller for longer and your blood sugar doesn’t spike as high.

As an added bonus, chia seeds are also a source of omega 3 fatty acids and calcium.

Try adding chia seeds to this homemade Maple Super Seed Muesli recipe.

#6 Most Filling Food: Nuts

Nuts contain the perfect trifecta of nutrients to keep you feeling full: protein, fibre, and fat. Lots of filling foods will have one or two of these, but with this epic combination, you’ll only need a small handful of nuts to fill up fast. They’re a concentrated source of nutrients and calories so you want to be careful not to overdo them.

Studies show that people who eat nuts on a daily basis have lower rates of heart disease!

Instead of a handful of nuts, try incorporating a couple tablespoons of nut butter as a spread on toast, mixed into oatmeal, or stirred into yogurt! Check out these five amazing nut butter recipes.

#5 Most Filling Food: Pulses

Pulses are foods like chickpeas, lentils, and kidney beans. They’re the dried seeds of legumes: plants whose fruit are contained in a pod.

Pulses are a very filling food because they’re a good source of protein and are very high in fibre. A 1/2 cup serving has between 7 and 17g of fibre! Consider the fact that most North Americans get less than 15g of fibre per day. Pulses contain soluble fibre, which act like a sponge in the body. The fibres swell and absorb water, slowing down the rate of digestion.

For quick and easy pulse recipes, I’ve got a list of 18 for you!

#4 Most Filling Food: Eggs

Another factor in rating foods for fullness is how they affect hormones. Eggs have been shown to suppress the release of a hormone that stimulates hunger while increasing the release of a hormone that signals satiety.

In one study, people who ate eggs at breakfast ate fewer calories at lunch than people who had a bagel for breakfast. So when you’re looking for a filling breakfast food, look no further than eggs.

I’ve discovered the secret to making the BEST scrambled eggs!

#3 Most Filling Food: Oatmeal

There are a couple of things that make oatmeal such a filling food. First of all, it’s a great source of soluble fibre, which binds water in the digestive tract and slows down digestion. Secondly, it’s cooked in water. When water is combined with food, it adds a lot of volume without any calories! You end up feeling fuller when eating less food.

For something different, try this Double Chocolate Zucchini Oatmeal recipe!

#2 Most Filling Food: Boiled Potatoes

In a test of 38 different foods ranging from fruit to fish to cereal, boiled potatoes came out as the topmost filling food. Boiled potatoes were over three times more filling than white bread, and seven times more filling than croissants!

This study didn’t examine sweet potatoes, so it’s uncertain how they would rank. But sweet potatoes are lower on the Glycemic Index, meaning the starch gets broken down into sugar and absorbed into the bloodstream at a lower rate than white potatoes. So I’d wager that boiled sweet potatoes would be even MORE filling!

Here’s my favourite mashed potato recipe.

#1 Most Filling Food: Grapefruit

Fruit is largely water and fibre. These two nutrients add volume without adding calories. Grapefruit has a very low glycemic index at 25. The glycemic index is a rating for how a food affects blood sugar levels. The lower the number, the less it affects blood sugar. As a comparison, pure glucose sugar has a rating of 100.

Tired of eating straight grapefruit? This this filling high protein grapefruit juice!

Filling Your Meals with Filling Food

Don’t forget that when you’re eating for weight loss, you have to keep yourself satisfied. You have to enjoy your eating plan, or you won’t stick to it! Finding ways to work these filling foods into most of your meals will ensure that you’re not suffering with hunger pangs as you go through your day!

12 Healthy Foods That Fill You Up Best

We all know the feeling of eating too much food, of being not just full but stuffed, and yet not feeling satisfied.

When we eat, sensors in our mouth, stomach and intestines assess the volume and chemical composition of what we’ve taken in, says Stephan J. Guyenet, PhD, author of “The Hungry Brain; Outsmarting the Instincts that Make Us Overeat.” Those sensors send that information to our brain stem, which then sets our level of fullness, or satiety. Once this feeling builds, our brain decides we’ve had enough food.

The question is, which foods flip that switch?

In 1995, a University of Sydney study found that high-fiber, high-water and high-protein foods were the most filling. It’s all the stuff we know is good for us: fresh fruits and vegetables; chicken and seafood; whole grains, beans and lentils; eggs and yogurt.

“Simple, whole foods similar to what our ancestors would have eaten provide a higher level of satiety per calorie, and may encourage a slimmer body with less effort,” Guyenet says.

Dr. Donald Hensrud, medical director of the Mayo Clinic Healthy Living Program and medical editor-in-chief of “The Mayo Clinic Diet,” agrees. “Numerous studies have demonstrated that when people eat foods high in water and fiber and low in fat and processed carbohydrates, they can achieve satiety at a lower calorie intake (but the same weight of food consumed) and, therefore, better manage weight.”

“The most filling foods contain protein, which is slowly digested, so it sticks to your ribs; and fiber, which expands like a sponge in the gut to keep you full,” explains Karen Ansel, MS, RDN, and author of “Healing Superfoods for Anti-Aging: Stay Younger, Live Longer.” “While most fiber-containing foods, such as fruits, vegetables, beans and whole grains, are naturally low in calories, protein is a different story. Be sure to stick with the leanest sources.”

Seek out these 12 nourishing basics to get your healthy fill:

1. Beans

Rich in protein and fiber, beans fill you up and are easy on the wallet. Add them to salads, use them to displace some of the noodles in a pasta dish or plop them into soup to add staying power.


2. Broccoli & Other Cruciferous Vegetables

“I love broccoli because it contains the highest amount of glucoraphanin, which supports your body’s own detoxification system, and has very few calories,” says Ashley Koff, RD, founder of Ashley Koff Approved and The Better Nutrition Membership. “I feel the same way about cauliflower. Try frozen cauliflower to thicken smoothies.”


3. Canned Tuna

“Canned tuna is one of the most underrated foods out there,” says Ansel. “A five-ounce can gives you 28 grams of protein, for only 122 calories. Plus, it’s a good source of omega-3 fats, which are key for heart and brain health.”


4. Chia Seeds

“Chia seeds are rich in slowly digested protein and fiber, nutrients that work together to keep you full for hours,” says Ansel. She recommends swirling one tablespoon of the seeds into iced tea or juice to transform them into filling snacks.

5. Chicken

“Lean proteins, like chicken, aid in satiety by affecting the hormones that control hunger and how quickly food empties from our stomachs,” says Keri Glassman, MS, RD. “Chicken also has the highest thermal effect of food, meaning it burns the most calories during digestion, versus carbs and fat.”


6. Eggs

“Eggs are a quick, easy source of protein, and they’re a lot lower in fat than you might think,” says Ansel. “One large egg gives you six grams of protein, with less than five grams of fat and only 1.5 grams of saturated fat.”

7. Greek Yogurt or Skyr (Icelandic Yogurt)

Packed with protein and calcium (Ansel says calcium is believed to help with fat burning), yogurt goes with everything from oatmeal (see below) and fresh berries to natural nut butters. Greek and Icelandic-style yogurt has even more protein than the regular kind.

8. Oatmeal

“Oatmeal contains a soluble fiber called beta-glucan,” says Glassman. “This slow-digesting fiber will keep you fuller for longer, preventing overeating, while it also may improve blood cholesterol and overall heart health.” If you’re burned out on your usual morning oats, try these 15 new ways to make oatmeal.

9. Nuts & Nut Butters

“Nuts and nut butters are satiating due to their protein and fiber,” says Jackie Newgent, RDN, author of “The All-Natural Diabetes Cookbook.” “Plus, they can provide satisfying crunch, creamy texture, and rich flavor!” Glassman suggests adding a small amount of natural peanut butter to oatmeal to deliver healthy fats and “give your sweet tooth a fix.”

10. Potatoes

Topping the charts for satiety in the 1995 study by a wide margin was… the humble spud. “Keep in mind that ate it plain, without burying it in butter, cheese and bacon bits,” says Guyenet.

11. Quinoa

“Quinoa supplies both protein and fiber,” says Ansel. “And, unlike most other grains, it delivers complete protein.” Use in place of rice or pasta for better filling power.


12. Ricotta or Cottage Cheese

“A quarter cup of either provides a whopping 7 grams of protein,” Ansel says. “Try instead of cream cheese on a whole-wheat English muffin or bagel.”

> 9 Unexpected Ways to Use Greek Yogurt
> Recipe: Easy Cheesy Crustless Quiche
> Recipe: Tart Cherry Chia Pudding

Guilt-Free Snacks That Fill You up and Help You Lose Weight

Don’t worry, we get it — there are some days when three square meals just don’t cut it. While your stomach growls, you may be tempted to stop at the nearest fast food place for fries and a shake. But before you go destroying your diet due to one bout of hunger, know you have plenty of options for snacking and staying on track for weight loss. Check out these guilt-free snacks that will fill you up without filling you out.

1. Mango with chili powder

A tangy snack is incredibly satisfying. | Bdspn/iStock/Getty Images Plus

Seems like a strange combination, doesn’t it? But actually, the sweetness of the mango and the spiciness of the chili makes the perfect delectable combination. Nutritionist Amy Gorin tells Redbook spicy foods can boost your metabolism slightly for a short amount of time, so why not spice up your fruit? And it goes perfectly with the flavor of the mango.

Next: There’s one singer who loves this classic combination on a sandwich.

2. Banana with peanut butter

This childhood snack is full of protein and healthy fats. | Professor25/iStock/Getty Images Plus

This snack combo is one Elvis would be proud of. Bananas will keep you full with their high fiber content and are only about 100 calories each. Add a tablespoon of peanut butter on top, and you’ll be getting satiating healthy fats for just an additional 90 calories or so. Don’t go too overboard with the peanut butter, though — you can easily eat hundreds of calories without realizing it if you don’t measure it out.

Next: Skip the movie theater popcorn and make your own.

3. Popcorn

Nix the heavy salt and butter from your popcorn. | Kitzcorner/ iStock/Getty Images Plus

You certainly have had this snack before — but it was probably doused in butter and salt, offering you way too many calories and grams of fat. When you make popcorn yourself and skip the unhealthy toppings, though, it’s actually the perfect snack.

CNN says 3 cups is only a mere 93 calories and 1 gram of fat. You’re also getting several grams of fiber, which helps keep you fuller for longer. Try adding a drizzle of olive oil and herbs on top for a fun treat.

Next: The healthy fats in these foods will keep you full for hours.

4. Nuts

If you want healthy fats … it doesn’t get better than nuts. | Conejota/iStock/Getty Images Plus

The high fat and calorie content of nuts probably has you running the other direction. But there are many kinds of nuts that can actually aid in weight loss, particularly Brazil nuts, walnuts, and almonds, Eat This, Not That! tells us.

Brazil nuts contain a good amount of selenium, which aids in a healthy metabolism. And walnuts are rich in polyunsaturated fats, which help reduce belly fat, while almonds may aid in even more weight loss when combined with a calorie-restricted diet. You’ll want to watch your portion size when it comes to nuts, though, so pre-measure them out before you snack.

Next: This protein-packed food is perfect for on-the-go snacking.

5. Hardboiled egg

Hungry after that hike? Grab a hardboiled egg or two. | Irisstock/iStock/Getty Images Plus

If you haven’t cooked yourself up a pot of hardboiled eggs yet, we highly recommend you start. This inexpensive, low-calorie snack is really the perfect food to keep you satisfied. Each egg contains about 70 calories and up to 6 grams of protein. And CookingLight reminds us hardboiled eggs last up to five days in the refrigerator, so you can make them ahead of time, too.

Next: Who doesn’t love this chickpea dip?

6. Hummus and carrot sticks

Munch on some crunchy carrot sticks and fresh hummus | Robyn Mac/iStock/Getty Images Plus

Most dips will help expand your waistline, but hummus isn’t one of them. This chickpea dip is part of the Mediterranean diet, which you’ve probably heard by now is super good for you. And because chickpeas are so rich in protein, your hummus snack will keep you full for just about 30 calories per tablespoon, Shape reports. And don’t forget the carrot sticks for dipping, which offer a satisfying crunch and plenty of fiber.

Next: This treat is perfect for your sweet tooth.

7. Greek yogurt with berries

So sweet, you’ll think its dessert! | Nata Vkusidey/Stock/Getty Images Plus

Greek yogurt isn’t just for breakfast. This creamy treat feels decadent, but it’s actually rich in protein and low in calories, making it the perfect healthy snack. A 6-ounce container of plain, nonfat Greek yogurt is just 100 calories, and you’ll get 17 grams of satiating protein, reports. For extra flavor, add a drizzle of honey or some berries for that fiber boost you need.

Next: This snack is one of the most filling on the list.

8. Cottage cheese with cinnamon

Way more interesting than a bowl of cereal! | Rez-Art/iStock/Getty Images Plus

You’ve probably passed the cottage cheese in the grocery store a hundred times without buying it, but it’s time to jump on the bandwagon. This fresh cheese is creamy, satisfying, and absolutely delicious with some cinnamon added.

Healthline mentions you can eat an entire cup for only 163 calories, and you’ll get 28 grams of protein and a wealth of other nutrients. As for the cinnamon, Fitday says it can also combat fat storage.

Next: Meat products can aid in weight loss, too.

9. Jerky

Beef jerky is the perfect guilt-free snack. | Rez-Art/iStock/Getty Images Plus

You can find dehydrated meat products in just about any gas station across America, which may be why they get such a bad rap. But in reality, beef and turkey jerky is a fantastic low-calorie, high-protein snack that can aid in weight loss.

Dietitian Keri Gans tells Women’s Health most jerkies have around 10 grams of protein per serving with just 1 gram of fat or less. And they’re pretty tasty, too, as they come in a variety of flavors.

Next: Try out this tasty soy snack — and it’s not tofu.

10. Edamame

A small bowl of Edemame is a healthy appetizer option. | Studio Mishka/ iStock/Getty Images Plus

You’ve probably seen this food pop up at local restaurants, and it’s really worth a try. Edamame are just boiled soybeans that, with a little salt, are actually quite delicious. And Health reminds us they’re super nutritious — 1 cup has 17 grams of protein, 8 grams of fiber, and less than 200 calories. If you prefer your snacks with a little crunch, roast them in the oven with some olive oil and bring them with you wherever you go. You’ll never reach for potato chips again.

Next: Make these yourself for an amazing treat.

11. Homemade smoothies

Sugary juices- no. Healthy homemade smoothie- yes. | Freeskyline/iStock/Getty Images Plus

Not all smoothies are created equal, which is why making your own is always the healthiest option. Prevention gives a few ideas on the best ingredients to add into your smoothie — think bananas, Greek yogurt, honey, and spices. And if you’re really going for a health kick, you can throw some veggies in there, too (carrots work especially well for added sweetness). You’ll never head back to Jamba Juice after tasting your own concoctions.

Next: This delicious fish makes for a great snack.

12. Smoked salmon on toast

You can put together this delicious light lunch in just minutes. | DronG/iStock/Getty Images Plus

Fish lovers, rejoice! Smoked salmon is one of the tastiest snacks out there for seafood fans, so feel free to throw some on toast with some tomato and capers for a truly satisfying snack. SFGate reports just 3 ounces of the fish offers over 15 grams of protein, and it’s rich in healthy fats that can also aid in weight loss. When choosing your toast, make sure you go for whole grain, too.

Next: Not all chips are bad.

13. Veggie chips

Time to replace junk food with baked veggie chips. | Jenifoto/ iStock/Getty Images Plus

We’re not talking about the bagged varieties — we’re talking about the delicious, warm, homemade veggie chips you can easily make yourself. Try a few of these ideas from Prevention for crunchy chips made out of sweet potatoes, zucchini, carrots, beets, or kale. By just adding a small amount of olive oil and spices, you can get amazing flavor with all the nutrients.

Remember — you can eat an entire sweet potato for roughly 115 calories, and a medium zucchini is just about 30 calories. Talk about a snack that’s good for your waistline.

Next: This snack is more nutritious than you’d expect.

14. Pumpkin seeds

A handful of pumpkin seeds is all you need to wade off those potato chip cravings. | Furo Felix/ iStock/Getty Images Plus

If you’re not saving the seeds after carving a pumpkin during the fall, then you should really start. These seeds are delicious when roasted and tossed with a seasoning of your choice. But you probably don’t realize just how good they are for your health and weight-loss goals. Healthline explains just 1 ounce of pumpkin seeds has 7 grams of protein and almost 2 grams of fiber when they’re de-shelled (even more when the shell’s on). You’ll want to watch your serving size, though — like nuts, you can end up eating a lot of calories if you’re mindlessly chewing.

Next: Here’s a classic combo with a twist.

15. Celery with almond butter

A snack of celery and a touch of almond butter is hydrating and sweet. | BWFolsom/iStock/Getty Images Plus

Who doesn’t remember having celery and peanut butter as a kid? Well, it turns out your parents were giving you a healthier snack than you thought. For something a little different than “ants on a log,” try dipping your celery in almond butter. ABC News explains studies show almond butter may aid in weight loss, as almonds help limit the amount of fat your body absorbs. And because of its protein content, 1 tablespoon is super satisfying.

Read more: Crazy Ways Weight Loss Can Actually Destroy Your Body

Most of us are looking for foods that are naturally delicious, low in calories, high in nutrition and filling. Certain foods can help us to feel more satiated and satisfied and as a result, they help to control our appetites. These foods are deemed as “high satisfaction foods.” These are the foods we want to feature as the mainstay for our diet. Why? Because they help prevent hunger pangs and all out binges, resulting in a more lasting and successful strategy for long term weight management and obesity prevention.

Filling foods tend to score lower on the glycemic index (GI). GI measures and ranks on a scale from 0 to 100 how a carbohydrate-containing food raises blood sugar (glucose) after eating. Foods with a high GI are those, which are rapidly digested and absorbed and produce fluctuations in blood sugar levels. Low-GI foods are more slowly digested and absorbed, resulting in more steady and gradual increases in blood sugar and insulin levels. Low GI foods have a positive impact on weight management because they help control appetite and delay hunger. Low GI diets also reduce insulin levels and insulin resistance.

Remember that fresh drinking water is also an essential part of feeling full – sort of. Sometimes we mistakenly identify with being hungry when really, we’re dehydrated. Staying on top of our hydration is an important part of maintaining a healthy mind and body. On the other hand, replacing food with liquid, is not the best strategy. Liquids fail to trigger the same physiological satiety mechanism as solid food. Fruit juice, for example, is not only higher glycemic than fresh fruit, it adds a lot of sugar and calories without adding fullness.

Whether you want to lose additional weight or you just want to maintain your physique, consider eating the following foods that are guaranteed to fill you up and help slim you down.

1. Beans and Legumes

Beans and legumes are plant-based sources of protein, fiber, complex carbohydrates, calcium, iron, folate, and zinc. For vegetarians and those who do not eat red meat, legumes and beans are an essential nutritional consideration. Their combination of complex carbohydrates and protein help unlock their amino acids, which serve as “brain food.” Consider choosing garbanzo beans (chick peas), lentils, soy beans (edamame), black beans, pinto beans–are all excellent choices when you’re looking for a food that will provide you with lots of fuel to get you through the day. These foods are full of fiber, protein and many vitamins and minerals. They’re easy to incorporate into just about meal and the canned variety is a convenient way to keep them easily accessible when in a pinch. Add them to salads, rice, pastas and even sandwiches for a quick pick me up and energy booster.

2. Sweet potatoes

Sweet potatoes are not only filling and incredibly delicious, their nutritional content is impressive. Sweet potatoes are an excellent source of fiber, beta carotene, vitamins C, B6, biotin, B5, E, and the minerals iron and potassium. Sweet potatoes may actually help stabilize blood sugar and they contain a significant source of antioxidants.

3. Green Veggies

Green veggies, especially those that are leafy, contain high amounts of antioxidants such as vitamins A, C, E and some B vitamins. Many also provide readily available calcium, protein and fiber. Eating at least five servings of vegetables and making sure that at least two of those are leafy greens won’t only keep you full and satisfied throughout the day, but they’ll also help you maintain a healthy heart while steering clear of colds and other ailments.

Although all vegetables are nutrient rich, some of the best options you can incorporate into your regular diet are kale, spinach, dark green lettuces, broccoli, mushrooms, carrots and brightly colored bell peppers. Consider including these vegetables in stir-fry meals, salads, casseroles, soups and sandwiches.

4. Nuts and Seeds

Almonds, walnuts, cashews, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds and others are all great forms of protein, a filling food. A handful of nuts or seeds between meals are a great way to stay full and help to avoid feeling deprived throughout the day. You can also add them to salads, soups, pastas and include them in oatmeal and yogurt to boost the satiety factor.

5. Fish

Fish are a great source of healthy omega-3 fats and protein, both of which combine to create satiety. The brain and healthy skin benefits add a wonderful side effect to this benefit.

6. Apples

When healthy adults consumed one medium-sized apple approximately 15 minutes before a meal, their caloric intake at that meal decreased by an average of 15%. Apples contain soluble fiber and phytonutrients that support our health and digestive tracks in addition to helping us feel fuller longer.

7. Whole grains

Whole grains like oatmeal, whole wheat pasta, oat bran, and wheat brain can all help keep us fully satisfied until our next meal. It is important to yield to portion control when consuming whole grains, because while they are a great source of fiber, they are generally not low-caloric. Balance out the carbohydrate hit with lean protein and healthy fats and you’ve got a true happy meal.

Losing weight doesn’t have to mean hunger pangs and feeling half-dead at your desk all day. The trick to trimming down without feeling tortured: “Shift to a fiber-rich diet with ample sources of lean protein—it’s the simplest way to reduce your caloric intake without eating less,” says Tanya Zuckerbrot, RD, author of The Miracle Carb Diet: Make Calories & Fat Disappear—with Fiber! Foods high in fiber or protein have fewer calories per gram, so you can pile up your plate without piling on the pudge.

Picking real food over gimmicky weight loss bars and shakes will also help you keep your head in the healthy-eating game. “Being balanced in the food you eat will make you feel balanced mentally,” says Bonnie Taub-Dix, RD, a New York City-based nutrition expert and author of Read It Before You Eat It. “You’ll know that you’ve eaten something solid and can get on with your day.” We asked these two dietitians to weigh in on the healthiest feel-fuller foods. Here are their top 10 picks.

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Lean Protein Can Reduce Hunger

There is growing evidence of the power of lean protein, like lean meat, fish, poultry, soybeans, and eggs, to help with fullness and weight loss.

“You are most likely to feel fuller after eating protein than other nutrients, including fiber, and one of the theories behind why higher-protein diets work well with weight loss is because it helps you not feel hungry,” says Purdue University nutrition professor Wayne Campbell, PhD.

Two recent studies from Purdue demonstrate the satisfying nature of lean protein. In one study, female participants who took in about 30% of their calories from lean protein felt more satisfied and maintained muscle mass better than another group that ate less protein.

“We found that an additional 20-30 grams of protein or a 3-4 ounce portion of lean protein was enough to influence appetite,” says Campbell. “We have also shown that when diets are inadequate in the amount of protein and don’t meet national recommendations, desire to eat increases.”

His suggestion: To keep calories in check, have higher-protein foods in place of other foods. For example, choose a glass of skim or low-fat milk instead of drinking a sweetened beverage, and you’ll take in 8 extra grams of protein.

You can add lean protein at any meal, but research has shown that adding it to your breakfast may be especially helpful.

In a study presented at the 2007 Experimental Biology meeting, researchers at Pennington Biomedical Research Center compared weight loss in dieters who ate either two eggs or a bagel for breakfast. The two breakfast meals were identical in calories and volume, but the egg breakfast was much higher in protein.

“Compared to the bagel eaters, overweight women who ate two eggs for breakfast five times a week for eight weeks, as part of a low-fat, reduced-calorie diet, lost 65% more weight, reduced waist circumference by 83%, reported higher energy levels, and had no significant difference in their … blood cholesterol or triglyceride levels,” reports researcher Nikhil V. Dhurandhar, PhD.

“When people eat eggs, rich in protein, at breakfast, they felt more satisfied and consumed fewer calories throughout the day, compared to those who ate a primarily carbohydrate meal like a bagel.”

The most filling foods for weight loss, according to scientists

Want to lose weight without getting hangry? Try adding a splash of hot sauce to your lunch.

Researchers at Quebec’s Laval University say that the best weight-loss diet for your body may mean filling your plate with foods shown to be highly satiating, such as spicy peppers, water-packed fruits and vegetables, fiber-filled whole grains, proteins such as eggs and yogurt, and healthy sources of fat.

At a glance, these foods seem like your average — if slightly random — list of healthy hits. But registered dietitian Wendy Bazilian, DrPH, says they all have a secret superpower: the ability to keep you satisfied, in different ways.

Bazilian has extensively researched satiety, or what it means for the body to be full and satisfied. Some filling foods for weight loss, she tells The Post, “impact the chemistry of satiety through hormones and compounds that are released in response to those foods.” Others use “physical factors, like thickness and volume, to help stimulate stretch receptors in the stomach and give us the feeling of being satisfied.”

Tamara Beckwith/NY Post

The result? “An unconscious lowering of the fork, without having to call on . . . unreliable willpower.”

A common mistake — for dieters and nondieters — is confusing satisfaction with fullness, Bazilian says. That misconception can create problems if you’re trying to lose weight.

“We love the soap-opera drama , ‘Ugh, I’m stuffed!’ ” she says. But you shouldn’t feel that way after any meal, says Bazilian, and especially not if you’re trying to slim down.

Instead, she says, what you want is to feel “non-drama satisfied” — full, but also able to “get up from the table and take a walk, or go back to work.”

Loading up on satiating foods during meals can also prevent overeating later on. The Laval study had a group of overweight men in their 40s adopt healthy diets.

Half of the group ate according to Canada’s Food Guide (similar to the USDA’s dietary guidelines), while the rest ate meals designed to satiate. The goal was to “promote a decrease in energy intake without restriction,” says researcher Angelo Tremblay, Ph.D., who worked on this 2017 study. “To make it a natural outcome that is reached without significant effort.”

It was a success on both fronts: The group of men who ate satiating diets lost more weight than the control group and were less likely to drop out of the study than those who ate according to government guidelines.

Unlike trendy ketogenic or plant-based diets, which require restriction, a high-satiety diet might actually be more enjoyable than unrestricted eating, says Tremblay. Early on in its research, his team had participants eat either a meal of fettuccine carbonara, or a vegetable-heavy chicken stir-fry of the same size.

One would assume that a rich, fatty carbonara would be more satisfying and leave eaters fuller for longer, but the opposite was true, says Tremblay: Those who ate the stir-fry ate less later in the day. Moreover, it “was perceived as more palatable” — in non-science speak, tasty and pleasurable — by participants than the creamy pasta.

‘Recognize that eating is more than just putting food down the old pie-hole.’

The best part of these results, says Bazilian, is that focusing on filling foods doesn’t require much of a shift from your average diet. “It’s not asking you to go head-over-heels in a different direction than what you’re already doing,” she says.

Although it’s true that the Laval study participants consumed prescribed percentages of the big three macronutrients — about 30% of their calories came from fat, 20% from protein and 50% from carbohydrates — that plate breakdown is pretty typical. Scientists think the participants’ secret to success was simply prioritizing satisfaction when they ate.

To help each bite really stick, Bazilian recommends taking the time to really focus on your food and enjoy it.

“Flavor is really the aroma, the texture, the taste, the look of the food,” she says. “Sit down at a table, or turn you chair away from the screen. Recognize that eating is more than just putting food down the old pie-hole.”

Ready to break the “I’m starving!”-“I’m stuffed” cycle? Get full on less by working these research-tested weight-loss tips and foods into your diet.

Water-rich fruits and vegetables

The best fruits and vegetables for weight loss have high water density, the scientists explain.

“Have a soup and/or salad every day,” Bazilian says, since the water-rich broth and vegetables will signal fullness. Summer is prime melon season, and cucumbers and tomatoes can make for a satisfying — and binge-preventing — pre-dinner snack.

Tamara Beckwith/NY Post

Hot peppers

Hot sauce for weight loss? Yes, indeed: The Laval study emphasized spicy peppers specifically, because the capsaicin-rich vegetables have been shown to both boost the metabolism and prevent future overeating.

Bazilian points to another recent study about spicy food and weight loss. “They put red pepper on the previous meal, and then they gave all-you-can-eat pizza,” she says. “People ate significantly less pizza after a meal with red pepper.”

Tremblay’s lab had similar results. “We prepared a small entree with 6 grams of Korean red pepper in the experimental entree, and only red salsa in the control entree,” he says. “We measured ad-lib intake and macronutrient intake, as well as for the subsequent meal. There was a decrease of about 200 kilocalories following the intake of the Korean pepper entree.”

Studies out of the Netherlands, he adds, have found that capsaicin triggers a thermogenic effect in the body, which leads to increased calorie burn. He suggests adding a pepper-based sauce, such as Tabasco, to meals, and incorporating spicy peppers into cooking.


Craving that full-stomach feeling without the subsequent crash? Reach for a bowl of oatmeal for weight-loss help. Basically, the oats use water weight to trick you into feeling satisfied: They “hold onto water and become more viscous and thicker,” says Bazilian. “It literally fills us up.”


“Greek yogurt is high in both protein and water, and water can help satiate,” says Bazilian. Plus, some studies have linked foods containing calcium to satiety. Pair yogurt — the plain kind is healthiest — with fruit for a double dose of volume, or with oat-packed granola for a hit of filling fiber.

Tamara Beckwith/NY Post


“At least one study has shown that overweight women consume less food for a full day after they ate foods with eggs,” says Bazilian. So add a few healthy egg recipes to your arsenal (try whipping up a vegetable frittata or adding a hardboiled egg to a lunchtime salad). Douse with pepper-rich hot sauce for extra weight-loss benefits.


The subjects’ diets didn’t skimp on unprocessed fats. Bazilian suggests opting for avocado, which brings healthy-fat benefits and adds creaminess to a meal. “Remember, texture is a part of satiety,” she says. “There’s a psychological piece.” The fat also helps to slow the release of sugar into the blood, she says, which can head off a post-meal crash.

A recent study was published – Effects of Dietary Pulse Consumption on Body
Weight: A Systemic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials (1) One of the many conclusions was that even if you keep the calories the same and add beans (pulses) you can have modest weight loss.
The myth that a calorie from any food is the same continues to be shattered and it is even a wonder that it was ever something that people believed in. The fact that your body processes 100 calories of a ice cream very differently than 100 calories of vegetables seems self-evident yet many people still hold onto this myth!
One of the great parts of the article listed above is that the authors review the 5 ways that beans are digested and these are essential kernels of knowledge that you can use as you become your own authority on nutrition. That small part of the article is what inspired me to write this post. Lets look at that one by one.

  1. Higher fiber foods like beans make you chew longer which can decrease the amount of food you eat and allow satiety signals to reach your brain. In other words, by slowing down the rate that you eat – you are more likely to get the signal from your stomach to your brain that you are full. It often takes 20 minutes before that signal gets to your brain. From this we can appreciate why it is important to eat slower. If we eat slower we eat less food before we start to feel full. If you are eating food slowly or fast – at around 20 minutes the signals that you have food in your stomach start being sent to the brain. Just this one tip – eating slower – has helped many of my patients lose a great deal of weight.

  2. The soluble fibers in beans delay emptying of the food from the stomach to the small intestine because of the gels that form from the fiber. This fiber gel is also what Miracle Noodles are made of! This will also allow you to feel fuller since the stomach is where the signal to the brain gets sent.

  3. The protein content in beans is enough to trigger cholecystokinin, and glucagon-like peptide 1 both of which also contribute to feeling full.

  4. Beans are a low glycemic index food – which helps to regulate blood sugar levels and when blood sugar is stable and not spiking up and down, your cravings are reduced, so you are less likely to snack or binge.

  5. You absorb less calories when you eat beans. High fiber diets actually reduce the absorption of the fat and protein in the food you eat with the high fiber foods like beans. You might think this is bad, but our fat and protein intakes in general if we are eating a Western diet are already too high for what longevity studies show is ideal. (2)

This reduced bioavailability (meaning the amount you absorb) of calories and sometimes with nutrients due to the presence of some anti-nutrients in improperly prepared beans is often why some people who eat paleo diets as an example choose to avoid beans. There are 3 things that need to be discussed here.

  1. One does not need to perfectly assimilate all the food we eat. We are not engines that need 100% conversion of food to energy. Our knowledge of the history of human diets has shown that high fiber diets that where calories were adequate, nutrient deficiencies were rare.

  2. Traditional cultures have eaten beans and developed ways to properly prepare the beans by proper soaking and cooking. See The Healthy Home Economist for a great article on soaking beans. I eat canned beans from BPA-Free cans and rinse them until there are no bubbles coming off of them from rinsing. Any bubbles or scum are irritating to the gut.

  3. Several of the longest living cultures around the world have eaten beans as a not insignificant part of their diets (2)

Beans should most certainly be a part of your diet. If you worry about gas, first you need to prepare them properly as above. Second, your body just needs to adjust to them. Start eating 1 tablespoon per day and as long as that does not cause gas or distress, increase to 2 tablespoons per day until you tolerate that. I have had patients that need to be on 1 tablespoon per day for 2 weeks before they could increase. If you can’t tolerate even 1 tablespoon without getting gas then you likely have some food intolerances or gut flora issues that are affecting your intestines. I then recommend a food elimination diet like the The Virgin Diet which is a masterful and user friendly guide to a great elimination diet that will also help with weight loss.

I can eat an entire can of beans with no gas whatsoever. Not bragging, just telling you what is possible with a gut that is strong and has good flora.

In summary, beans are what I consider an essential part of your diet. You now fully understand why they make you feel full and contribute to a healthy diet. So, what are you waiting for, try some great recipes. Here is a great one for Miracle Rice and Beans or Tuscan White Bean Spinach and Artichoke Noodles with Lemon Ricotta Mousse. These super low calorie and high fiber bean dishes will give you all the benefits of beans without the extra calories of regular rice. Miracle Rice is perfect for this substitute and the 10 pack starter of Miracle Rice is a great way to start working beans into your diet – get your starter pack today!

Leave a comment below if you liked this article and want more like it before clicking over to the recipe or the starter pack!!

To Your Health,

Jonathan Carp, MD

P.S. Picture above by Miracle Noodle Ambassador Sherri Williams. Thanks Sherri!!

  1. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 2016;103:1213-23

  2. The Blue Zones by Dan Buetnner

How do protein-rich beans and other legumes promote weight loss?

Among the large list of food items that aid in weight loss, you must have across certain magical remedies that are purported to be really helpful for shedding those extra kilos. When we talk about such foods, the most underrated ones that come to mind must be beans and other legumes. From the family of plants called Fabaceae, these fruits and seeds have been found to be really nutritious and healthy. Primarily eaten in many cuisines and cultures for their fiber content, the many beans and legumes are rich sources of protein too. Therefore, they contribute to a daily diet which is high in protein.
As most of us know that proteins are of utmost importance for good health. It would be an added bonus to more protein as the protein-rich diets have been found to contribute for weight loss. So, you can include a variety of beans and other legumes like chickpeas, kidney beans, black beans, soybeans, peanuts, and pulses in your meal portions to lose weight.

Here is how protein-rich beans and other legumes promote weight loss:
A diet of beans and other legumes keep you satiated for long
According to certain studies, it has been found out that beans and legumes are more satiating than the meat preparations. In this way, these low-fat and protein-rich food items would help you stay fuller for long and curb your cravings. By incorporating beans and legumes in your regular meals, you will avoid processed snacks for in-between meal hungers and avoid unnecessary weight gain.
Beans and other legumes promote burning of fats and calories
High-protein food items like beans and legumes can contribute to your weight loss goals by burning fats and calories. They contain such nutrients and amino acids that can promote lesser consumption of calories and fats too. Also, the fibre component of beans helps you feel full sooner without the extra calories. This way, consumption of beans and legumes can promote weight loss.
Beans and legumes lead to faster weight loss
Evidence gathered through certain studies suggest that those who consumed 3 cups of beans and other legumes per week lost a lot of weight. Another study suggested that those who ate four servings of legumes a day on a calorie-restricted diet lost more weight than the non-legume eaters.
Read Also:belly fat
It has been found that a variety of beans and other legumes like black beans, kidney beans, etc. have been beneficial in shedding belly fat. Regular consumption of these high-protein foods can direct the fat away from the waistline. Alongside that, their consumption have been found to be helpful in regulating blood sugar and insulin levels. These are further indicators of how beans and other legumes can promote weight loss.
Fibre component of beans and legumes rivals a low-carb diet
Generally, a diet which is low in carbohydrates is suggested for weight loss. But recent evidences have suggested that the high-fibre and high-protein component of beans and other legumes can lead to better results in weight loss than a low-carb diet. Also, the beans and other legumes also can reduce the levels of LDL cholesterol, thereby providing heart health.

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