40 Foods You Can Eat Plenty Of Without Putting On Weight

Just because you’re on a diet, doesn’t mean you have to go hungry. In fact, there are plenty of weight-loss friendly foods that can help us to feel full without causing us to pile on the pounds. That’s right: these are 40 totally guilt-free foods that you can feast on and still stay in shape.

40. Boiled potatoes

Potatoes have something of a bad rep in the diet world, given that they are high in carbs. But the humble spud is jam-packed with nutrients, as well as resistant starch which is great for satisfying hunger in less calories. And the best way to prepare potatoes to feel fuller for longer is to boil them. This is because it makes them three times better at abating the appetite than fried chips.

39. Arugula

With only 10 calories per two cups of arugula, you can eat a whole heap of this cruciferous vegetable without piling on the weight. As an added benefit, the peppery leaves are high in antioxidants which can protect our cells from damage. But to reap the full benefits of arugula it should be eaten raw.

38. Algae

Algae may not sound like the most appetizing of snacks, but its benefit to weight loss is well documented. Whether taken as a supplement or eaten in its natural form through foods like kelp, seaweed and spirulina, algae helps to improve and regulate thyroid function. Plus it’s one of the best foods to prevent us from putting on weight.

37. Eggplant

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One portion of eggplant amounts to just 24 calories. And this versatile vegetable can be baked or grilled and contains a healthy amount of vitamins and minerals as well as a good amount of fiber and potassium. Low in fat, the eggplant makes for fairly guilt-free eating, as long as you don’t douse it in oil.

36. Honeydew melon

Melons contain an estimated 60 to 70 calories per slice, meaning you can snack on them to your heart’s content. The fruit can also keep our hunger at bay while helping our bodies expel any excess liquid. Honeydew melon in particular contains more than half of our recommended daily intake of vitamin C and copper, which can contribute to glowing skin.

35. Zucchini

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One portion of zucchini contains around 42 calories. And as well as being relatively low in fat, the summer squash can bring our bodies’ salt-water ratio into line. Plus the wonder-veg can improve intestinal function and be used in place of carb-rich foods such as pasta to drastically reduce a meal’s calories

34. Eggs

Eggs seem to have fallen out of fashion in healthy eating circles, but they’re incredibly good for us. They are complete in protein, containing all nine of the essential amino acids, and leave us feeling fuller for longer. Plus studies have discovered that those who ate eggs at breakfast felt more satisfied and went on to consume fewer calories compared to those who started the day with a bagel.

33. Tangerines

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Tangerines contain close to no fat and are high in energy. That means you can feast on the fruit without putting on weight and feel energized in the process. Plus tangerines are often sweeter than their fellow citrus fruits, so they can satisfy your sweet tooth in place of, say, a fattening dessert.

32. Brussels sprouts

Just one cup of Brussels sprouts contains 4 grams of both dietary fiber and protein, making them more satisfying than other vegetables. Like their cousins cabbage and broccoli, the tiny cruciferous vegetables could help to protect against cancer, thanks to their phytochemical and vitamin C content.

31. Cucumber

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Given their high water content, cucumbers are low in calories. Plus they can help to reduce swelling and help you lose weight gently. That being said, most of the fruit’s nutrients – including fiber and vitamin A – are found in its seeds and skin, so don’t be tempted to peel them before chowing down.

30. Beetroot

Beetroot contains no fat but is filled with minerals and vitamins. And beets are beneficial to our health as they can help to maintain energy levels, burn fat and regulate blood sugar levels. Plus, because the vegetable is fiber-rich, it can aid weight-loss by lowering cholesterol and maintaining bowel function. Good old purple stuff.

29. Oatmeal

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Oatmeal is a popular breakfast food and for good reason. The grains are high in fiber and are able to soak up water, meaning they help us to feel full. Plus beta-glucan content in oatmeal can help to slow the digestion process and absorb carbs. And studies have shown that oatmeal is more satisfying than other breakfast cereals, helping to suppress our appetites throughout the day.

28. Italian wedding soup

You may think that liquid-based meals are less filling than solids. But it turns out that soups are actually more satisfying than more solid meals containing the same ingredients. And broths – like Italian wedding soup – are even more advantageous to weight loss as they often contain fewer calories than their creamier counterparts.

27. Pineapple

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As well as being delicious, pineapple has a number of health benefits. Low in calories but loaded with antioxidants and nutrients, it has disease and inflammation-fighting enzymes. Plus the fruit is beneficial to weight loss, as it contains bromelain which splits fats and helps the body to absorb proteins.

26. Lettuce

Lettuce contains just ten to 20 calories per serving. But while the leaves are low in fat, they are rich in nutrients and vitamins including iron, folate and vitamins C and A. Plus, eating the salad staple can improve bone strength, hydration and vision.

25. Celery

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Celery is mainly made up of water. In fact, the clear stuff accounts for 95 percent of the green stalks’ mass. But that doesn’t mean the vegetable is lacking in nutritional value. Celery contains fiber, folate and potassium, as well as an impressive 30 percent of our daily vitamin K requirement.

24. Popcorn

Popcorn might feel like a naughty treat, but it’s actually relatively low in calories. The high volume of the popular snack helps to fill our stomachs. And the fiber contained within popcorn can help us to feel full. But before you reach for any old bag, bear in mind that some store-bought varieties can be high in calories or additives.

23. Kale

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A member of the cruciferous vegetable family, kale is one of the most nutrient-dense foods in the world. One cup of uncooked kale contains just 33 calories but is high in protein and fiber. It’s also one of the few foods that boasts omega-three fatty acid, a nutrient that is mostly associated with fish.

22. Tomatoes

While low in calories and carbs, tomatoes are loaded with nutrients and vitamins. Just one tomato contains around 40 percent of our recommended minimum daily intake of vitamin C. Plus they contain lycopene which can help to ward off chronic diseases like heart disease and diabetes.

21. Grapefruit

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Grapefruit is rich in fiber which can keep our appetites in check by balancing blood sugar levels, helping us feel satisfied for longer. And it contains vitamin C and can improve digestion and lower cholesterol. Plus it boasts all these benefits at just 50 calories per portion. Yum!

20. Chicken breast

Chicken breast is high in protein but low in calories, making it a great addition to a healthy diet. It also contains other essential nutrients like zinc and iron. And that’s not all. The lean meat can help to burn fat and build muscle, making it the ideal choice for those wanting to control their weight.

19. Broccoli

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Broccoli has been labeled a superfood in recent years, and it’s not hard to see why. It contains sulforaphane – which destroys cancer-inducing chemicals in the body – as well as folic acid, iron, potassium, calcium and vitamins A, C, E, and K. Plus it only contains around 31 calories per serving. Winning!

18. Cauliflower

At only 25 calories per cup, you can enjoy lots of cauliflower without gaining weight. And while it may be low in fat, it’s rich in nutrients including fiber which slows digestion and helps us to feel full. So eating cauliflower may help to reduce the number of calories we consume throughout the day, and help us to control our weight.

17. Tea

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Consuming some beverages can lead us to gain weight, but tea isn’t one of them. Because you can sip on the drink throughout the day without putting on a single pound. Some tea varieties go one step further and can actually aid in weight loss. The most beneficial varieties of tea include green, white, oolong and rooibos.

16. Turkey

As a lean meat, turkey makes the perfect snack that will help you maintain a healthy weight while increasing your protein consumption. And eating it will help you to feel full and build muscle while keeping your calorie count low. In fact, turkey is one of the best meats when it comes to weight loss, as it contains less fat than pork, lamb, steak, and even chicken.

15. Blackberries

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Blackberries contain antioxidants called bioflavonoids and vitamin C. Plus the fruit boasts a number of health benefits and can help with digestion, alertness, tightening tissue and also make skin look more youthful. A serving of blackberries contains an estimated 62 calories, making them the perfect dieting snack.

14. Rice cakes

Rice cakes consist simply of puffed brown rice. It means the snacks are rich in whole grains and energizing carbohydrates but low in calories, so they can fill you up without causing you to gain weight. But remember that flavored varieties contain more sugar and unhealthy ingredients, so the cakes are best enjoyed plain.

13. Tuna

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Bring on the flat stomachs! Because tuna is one of the best sources of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), which helps regulate fat genes in the tummy. So eating the fish can be beneficial in maintaining a flat stomach. Plus both fresh and canned tuna contain a number of nutrients including protein, iron and calcium. And a whole can of light tuna in water contains just 191 calories.

12. Strawberries

You might be surprised to learn that one portion of strawberries contains more vitamin C than an orange. They’re also rich in an antioxidant known as polyphenols, as well as fiber and potassium. If that wasn’t enough, strawberries are fat-free, cholesterol-free and sodium-free, contributing to heart health. One cup contains around 50 calories.

11. Cantaloupe

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One cup of cantaloupe contains a decent amount of potassium and over 100 percent of the recommended daily value of vitamins A and C. In fact, the fruit boasts more beta carotene – an A vitamin which is good for the eyes – than grapefruits, mangoes, oranges or peaches. And given that cantaloupe is 90 percent water, there are just 55 calories in each serving.

10. Oranges

Oranges are high in vitamin C, which aids collagen production and keeps our skin looking healthy. And while they may be overlooked by many, the fruit’s pith is high in fiber which helps to lower blood sugar levels and cholesterol. As for the calorie count, a medium-sized orange contains just 80.

9. Beans

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Beans are a good source of protein but contain fewer calories than other protein sources, like meat and dairy products. And don’t forget that the legumes are rich in fiber and boast a low energy density. Crucially you might think, studies have shown that those who ate beans had a significant weight reduction and waist circumference in comparison to those who didn’t.

8. Salmon

One can of salmon contains around 122 calories and 17.5 grams of protein. This means eating the fish for lunch, for example, would see you through the afternoon without feeling hungry. Not only is salmon great for keeping our appetite in check, it also boasts omega-3 fatty acids which are good for the heart and body in general.

7. Beef tenderloin

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Tenderloin is the most expensive cut of beef, but it’s also one of the leanest. Classified as a lean beef by the United States Department of Agriculture, it contains less than 10 grams of fat per 3.5-ounce serving. So eating a tenderloin steak is a great way to enjoy red meat while keeping your fat intake relatively low.

6. Blueberries

Blueberries are known for their high antioxidant content, and for good reason. That’s because, of all the fruits, they contain the most antioxidants. The tiny superfoods are also rich in fiber, with one cup boasting 14 percent of our recommended daily intake. If that wasn’t enough, the same amount only contains about 85 calories.

5. Apples

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Apples are particularly good at helping us to feel full. That’s because the fruit contains soluble fiber which slows digestion, leaving us feeling satisfied for longer. Plus they’re 85 percent water which increases their volume without upping their calorie count. To feel the full benefits of the fruit, apples should be eaten in solid segments rather than juiced or pureed, as these processes lessen their satiety.

4. Lentils

Lentils are great at helping us to feel full without contributing to weight gain. They are high in fiber and expand in the stomach to leave us feeling satisfied. Plus lentils are rich in protein. This triggers hormones that tell our brain when we’re full, helping to prevent us from overeating.

3. Cottage cheese

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High in protein but low in calories, cottage cheese is one of the most effective weight loss-friendly foods. According to one study, the dairy product’s effect on the appetite is comparable to that of eggs. And cottage cheese is laden with healthy nutrients like calcium, vitamin B, phosphorus and selenium. Yummy and good for you all round!

2. Grapes

Grapes are packed with fiber and have a high water content meaning that they can leave us feeling full. So actually they could be the perfect low-fat snack. Just a handful of the little fruits can keep hunger pangs at bay between meals without adding inches to your waistline. Plus they are high in nutrients and antioxidants, contributing to overall health.

1. Wholemeal pasta

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Compared to refined varieties, wholemeal pasta is much more filling and a better source of B vitamins and minerals. Being rich in carbohydrates, it can provide us with plenty of energy to ensure our muscles, nervous system and red blood cells stay healthy. And as a whole grain, wholemeal pasta is high in fiber, which can help manage your weight.

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