Eat these foods for a healthier, leaner body (they are affordable!). Whether you call ‘em superior foods or staples, coconut oil, avocado, eggs, cocoa, and kimchi are all foods that have been linked to optimal leanness, muscularity, and health. Check it out:
#1: Coconut oil
Coconut oil is abundant in a medium chain fatty acid that appears to protect your brain, manage blood sugar, and improve energy use in the body so you improve body composition. Truly! Coconut oil doesn’t enter the cholesterol cycle, so the fat it contains won’t be deposited in fat cells.
There’s evidence: A recent study of people in Malaysia, where the coconut is native, found that eating 30 ml of coconut oil 3 times a day for a month led to body fat loss and trimmer waist lines.
Called an “anti-obesity” food by scientists, the avocado is jam-packed with nutrients and antioxidants, and although it is rich in monounsaturated fats, studies suggest eating avocado regularly will keep you from getting fat. This is all for naught if your diet is poor, but in a typical high-protein, low-carb diet, avocados can improve your body and health.
The research is significant: Analysis of the diets of 17,567 Americans showed that those who ate more avocados had significantly lower body weight and waist circumference and a 50 percent lower risk of metabolic syndrome. And these weren’t nutrition-conscious eaters either—impressive, no?
A perfect protein source, eggs provide a nice dose of choline, which helps with liver detoxification. This is one reason eggs have been a staple in the diets of bodybuilders for years—a clean liver means the body eliminates toxins better, supporting optimal body composition. Don’t shy away from eating them daily. Recent research shows three eggs a day will IMPROVE cholesterol, decrease inflammation, and manage blood sugar when on a lower carbohydrate diet.
You’ve heard about the happy news that dark chocolate is really good for because it is antioxidant-rich and cardio protective.
Not only will cocoa, from which chocolate is derived, support cardiovascular health, it improves insulin signaling and association studies show a higher dark chocolate intake is linked with a leaner physique. Opt for a chocolate that has over 72 percent cocoa solids—the darker the better—without added sugar. Avoid chocolate that contains dairy, as it blocks the activity of its powerful antioxidants.
Perhaps not as delicious as chocolate, kimchi is a fermented Korean cabbage dish that improves gut health and insulin sensitivity. A recent study showed that overweight subjects who ate 100 grams of kimchi at every meal for 4 weeks produced significant fat loss and decreased body fat by 1.5 percent. Blood pressure was lower and blood sugar control improved by the end of the study.
Liau, K., et al. An Open-Label Pilot Study to Assess the Efficacy and Safety of Virgin Coconut Oil in Reducing Visceral Adiposity. ISRN Pharmacology. 2011. 949686.
Ratliff, J., et al. Eggs Modulate the Inflammatory Response To Carbohydrate Restricted Diets in Overweight Men. Nutrition and Metabolism. 2008. 5(6).
Devalaraja, S., Jain, S., Yaday, H. Exotic Fruits as Therapeutic Complements for Diabetes, Obesity, and Metabolic Syndrome. Food Research International. August 2011. 44(7), 1856-1865.