Fat Burning Foods

Krista Dolbear BSc, RHN, PTS
Krista Dolbear BSc, RHN, PTS

3 Must Eat Fat Burning Foods

There is no magic pill contrary to what many supplement and pharmaceutical companies want you to believe. There are no quick fixes or any one specific food that will melt that ugly fat off of your waist or bum.

Don’t be fooled by specially marketed foods or claims. Eating a variety of real, whole foods on a daily basis provides your body with the nutrients it needs to function optimally while helping you to burn fat.

How? It’s simple. When you consume appropriate portion sizes of real food in a balanced way, your body is able to use that energy from the food as fuel and not store it as fat causing you to gain weight.

There are a bunch of foods that promote fat loss and should be included in your diet on a regular basis. These are the top 3 foods that you should consume on a regular basis that can help you to burn fat faster.


The grapefruit diet has been around for a long time. While I am not suggesting you go on the ‘grapefruit diet’ there has been a recent study published in the Journal of Medicinal Foods that found that consuming ½ a fresh grapefruit before a meal lead to significant weight loss.

In fact, this particular study showed that two-hours AFTER ingesting this fruit, post-glucose insulin levels were significantly reduced among subjects compared to a placebo group.

The study reported, “in metabolic syndrome patients the effect was also seen with grapefruit products. Insulin resistance was improved with fresh grapefruit.”

There is a flavinoid compound in grapefruit called naringin. This flavinoid gives the grapefruit it’s bitter taste and is responsible interference with enzymatic activity in the intestines and with the breakdown of certain drugs, resulting in higher blood levels of the drug.

Naringin is also responsible for increasing the half-life (extending the activity) of various alkaloids, especially caffeine. Even certain fat burners utilize naringin for enhanced alkaloid effect.

What does this mean to you? The natural ingredients found in grapefruit can help you to burn fat more efficiently.

Don’t go eating grapefruit all day and don’t expect this to work like magic without changingyour nutrition habits or exercising. It can help you break through a plateau or help to burn excess calories.

RECOMMENDATIONS: Have ½ to 1 small grapefruit before 2 of your daily meals 3-5 times per week. Drinking grapefruit juice doesn’t have the same effect.

Dark Leafy Green Vegetables

Now you know that you should consume dark green leafy vegetables, specifically cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cabbage, kale, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, bok choy) but do you know why?

We are living in an age of excessive estrogen stimulation. Our food supply, beauty products, water and household products are contaminated with xenoestrogens that arechemicals that you are exposed to (and are hard to avoid in the modern world) that have an estrogenic effect in your body.  Excess exposure to these can cause hormone balance disruptions for both men and women.

These estrogenic chemicals that we are exposed to on a daily basis can stimulate your body to store belly fat, along with many other problems (including many diseases including cancer risks in the long term).

There are 2 IMPORTANT reasons why you need to consume dark green leafy vegetables daily.

  1. Phytoestrogens are plant-based estrogen compounds that bind to the same estrogen receptor sites that xenoestrogens do. When a receptor site is already occupied by a phytoestrogen, xenoestrogens cannot attach to it.
  2. Indole-3-Carbynolsenhance the liver’s ability to break down excess estrogens in the body.

RECOMMENDATIONS: 1 cup of broccoli per day, lightly steamed. Have another dark green leafy vegetable at another meal or snack throughout the day.

Green Tea

The compounds found in green tea that are known to help burn fat are called catechins. There are a number of catechins found in green tea, black tea, white tea and oolong tea but the main one that is known to help improve metablism is EGCG.

According to a study published in an issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, green tea has been shown to activate the body’s thermogenic fat-burning activity. The subjects in the study consumed an optimal amount of catechins (690 mg) for 12 weeks. The outcome was that there was a significant reduction in the subjects’ total fat area, waist circumference, skinfold thickness and subcutaneous fat area!

The British Journal of Nutrition found there is a positive relationship between the caffeine in green tea and EGCG, which has been found to significantly increase the body’s resting metabolic rate.

RECOMMENDATIONS: Consume 2-3 cups per day of green tea. If you are sensitive to caffeine the drink caffeine free green tea.

Baked Tilapia and Mint Cabbage Salad

Tilapia is a wonderful source of low fat protein. Lots of recipes call for frying fish, but baking turns it into a low calorie, high protein meal. The generous seasoning lends to a rich flavor that is complimented perfectly by the light minty salad. Servings: 4

Here’s what you need…tilapia

For the Tilapia:

  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 bunch of fresh cilantro, washed and stems trimmed
  • 4 tilapia fillets (4-6oz)
  • curry powder
  • salt
  • sweet paprika
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely minced
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a glass baking pan, drizzle the olive oil and scatter the cilantro over the bottom of the pan.
  3. Generously season both sides of each fillet with curry, salt and sweet paprika. Place the fillets evenly across the bottom of the pan, on top of the cilantro.
  4. In a small bowl, combine the lemon juice and finely minced garlic. Pour over the tops of the fillets.
  5. Cover the pan with foil. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove foil and bake for an additional 5 minutes.

For the Salad:

  • 1 head green, organic cabbage, shredded
  • 1/8 cup crushed, dry mint leaves
  • 1/8 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • dash of salt
  1. Wash the shredded cabbage and place in a medium sized bowl. Sprinkle with the dried mint, mix well.
  2. In a small bowl combine the remaining ingredients. Pour over the cabbage and mix well.

Nutritional Analysis: One serving equals: 221 calories, 8g fat, 102mg sodium, 13g carbohydrate, 7g fiber, and 26g protein