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Foods for a Healthy Weight: Part 2

Yesterday’s Daily Tip covered four foods for a healthy waistline. Today’s Tip offers up five more: from oats to healthy fats, these foods can help you get to a healthy weight. Add them to your meals this month.

If you are trying to lose weight, avoid the frozen, prepared, and often expensive "diet" meals and instead hit up the real, whole foods sections of the grocery store. These foods are not just filling and can help you manage your weight, but offer numerous health benefits as well.

  1. Steel-cut oats. An excellent source of fiber, eating steel-cut oats is a good way to fill up and stay satisfied in the morning without a lot of calories. Consider the convenient use of a crockpot the night before.
  2. Quinoa. A healthy alternative to white rice, quinoa can help curb hunger via its fiber and protein content.
  3. Apples. A calorie-efficient way to curb hunger, apples contain antioxidants that may help prevent metabolic syndrome, a condition marked by excess belly fat.
  4. Buckwheat pasta. Unlike regular white-flour pasta, buckwheat is high in fiber and contains protein, making it more satiating, so you eat less. Try soba noodles in place of spaghetti. Always aim to cook the pasta a few minutes less to decrease its glycemic index.
  5. Olive oil and avocados. Both contain heart healthy monounsaturated fats. Many people find that increasing their intake of healthy fats makes them feel fuller while keeping insulin - which helps conduct fat into the cells for storage - low and steady.

 

Choosing High-Quality Olive Oil (Video)

Olive oil comes in a variety of forms, but Dr. Weil explains what makes a good-quality olive oil. The best olive oil is extra virgin, organic and cold pressed. It is important to protect olive oil because the compounds (polyphenols) in the oil break down when exposed to light and air, decreasing the health benefits it provides.

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Dr. Weil Recommends: The Healthiest Oil

Olive oil, once used in the U.S. primarily by immigrants from Mediterranean countries and adventurous gourmets, is now mainstream. In 2013, Americans consumed over 338 metric tons, about ten times the amount used in 1982. This is good news, as olive oil has multiple health benefits:

• It has the highest percentage of heart-healthy monounsaturated fat of any edible oil.

• Quality brands contain abundant antioxidants - substances that have been shown to provide cardiovascular and anti-cancer effects.

• If you're watching your weight, adding extra olive oil to your diet can help you feel full longer.

• Regular consumption of olive oil may help increase concentrations of a bone protective protein known as osteocalcin.

Plus quality extra-virgin olive tastes wonderful: the vibrant green treat has probably helped many Americans realize that there is no need to sacrifice sensory pleasure in pursuit of healthy eating. One easy way to get more olive oil is to use it instead of butter in low temperature cooking, on top of fresh vegetables or as a salad dressing.

When buying olive oil, choose small bottles of certified organic oil. Check the label for the ICEA (Istituto per la Certificazione Etica e Ambientale, which means Ethical and Environmental Certification Institute) logo, or that of another organic certification body such as the USDA's green-and-white ORGANIC logo.