Healthy Eating : How to Control Your Appetite
6 Superfoods That Control Your Appetite
Want to fill up, whittle your waist, and possibly ward off diabetes all at the same time? Listen up: A recent study from the UK found that mice fed high-fat diets gained less weight if their diets were also supplemented with beta-glucan or inulin, two types of fermentable carbohydrates found in foods such as oats, barley, Jerusalem artichokes, mushrooms, asparagus, onions, and bananas.
Fermentable carbohydrates are a type of fiber that's broken down—or fermented—by the bacteria in your colon. "When this fermentation takes place, short chain fatty acids [SCFAs] are formed," says Lona Sandon, RD, assistant professor of clinical nutrition at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center. "These seem to produce more of the appetite-controlling hormones that help us feel full." They may also help lower levels of dangerous body fat: Preliminary research on obese women found that higher blood levels of the SCFA acetate were associated with lower levels of visceral fat, the dangerous kind that's packed around your organs and is linked to diabetes, heart disease, and some cancers.
These foods may also play a role in managing or preventing diabetes and maintaining good digestion. "Because fermentable carbs don't start to break down right away, they don't contribute to the big spikes and crashes in blood sugar," says Sandon. "They also act as prebiotics, which feed the healthy probiotic bacteria in the gut and keep things running smoothly."
There's one initial drawback: gas, if you're not used to eating so much fiber. "Increase your consumption of these foods gradually to reduce symptoms," says Sandon. (Or sip this ultimate de-bloating smoothie.)
Curious how you'll get your fix of these fat fighters? We thought you might be. Here, tasty recipes that take out all the guesswork.
Remember when we said foods could play a role in maintaining good digestion? We were talking about asparagus. This versatile veggie supplies inulin, a special fiber that helps the "good" bacteria in your digestive tract. (Fiber, by the way, has been associated with lower stroke risk.)
We recommend roasting or grilling the asparagus to develop its hidden sweet-and-nutty side for a silky, cream-free soup. Though if you prefer another cooking method, that's OK. Asparagus—no matter how you cook them—are perfect in this hot or cold pasta salad.
Forget fat! A medium banana provides a mild blood sugar boost and has 30% of the day’s vitamin B6, which helps the brain produce mellowing serotonin. The more serontonin you have, the less likely you are to fall to stress and anxiety. Plus, there's it's initial claim to fruit fame: muscle-toning potassium.
Meet your morning meal expectations with a batch of Banana-Walnut Muffins. For a change of pace, sip them in this protein-packed Peanut Butter Banana Shake.
In some cultures, onions are considered cure-alls, having been prescribed for everything from diabetes to improving athletic performance. Research even shows their thiosulfinates (sulfur compounds responsible for their smell) protect against cardiovascular disease.
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