You’re probably already aware that eating more calories than you burn leads to weight gain. And, of course, the reverse is true. If you cut your calorie consumption to below the amount you burn, you’ll lose weight. But did you also realize that the types of food you eat can also cause you to gain or lose weight? At Emerald Laser, our providers usually recommend that their patients pursue a calorie-neutral diet to maintain the remarkable improvements they experience through laser lipolysis. Read on to discover the types of food that you can use to help you lose and maintain your ideal weight.
Why Certain Food Types Help You Lose Weight
Digestion is the process by which food is broken down so that the body can use the calories for energy and nutrients and materials can be disseminated for cellular repair and growth. Like all bodily processes, digestion requires energy, which is derived from food or stored fats. The harder your body works to metabolize your food, the more calories you burn. Some types of food contain the energy and nutrients your body requires, but they make your body work harder to digest the materials.
Other foods, like processed sugar, burn very easily, which means that fewer calories are consumed in the digestive process. Additionally, sugary foods carry very few other nutrients, which means you’ll still need to seek other sources of food to give your body what it requires. That means that the sugar ends up being additional, empty calories.
Avoid These Foods to Lose Weight
There are many foods in the standard American diet that should be avoided entirely if you’re trying to lose weight. High-calorie foods that don’t offer a variety of nutrients tend to cause you to eat more. Here are some specific categories of foods that make it difficult to lose fat.
- Fried Potatoes – French fries, potato chips, crisps, and hashbrowns are readily available in nearly any restaurant but a terrible idea if you’re trying to lose fat. In fact, one study found that potato chips may be one of the most fattening foods there is.
- Sugary Drinks – While you might think that this is exclusively referring to soda, there are a number of other beverages that fit this category, including some sports drinks, juices, and cocktails.
- Desserts – There probably aren’t many truly healthy desserts out there. Even desserts that aim to be healthier (i.e., gluten-free, vegan, low fat) are usually high in calories and offer little in the way of nutrients. Some fruit-based desserts — ones that have real fruit — at least provide some nutrition in exchange for the high calories.
- White Bread – Bread is something you want to avoid in general, but white bread often contains added sugar and is usually more refined than whole grain bread. One study with over 9200 subjects showed a link between white bread and fat gain.
- Alcoholic Beverages – It’s not the alcohol; it’s the calories in the drinks that it’s in. Alcohol contains about 7 calories per gram, but beer, wine, mixers, and cocktail ingredients dial that number up quite a bit. Additionally, most people don’t mitigate their food consumption to accommodate the additional calories. In fact, many people eat more.
- Candy – This might seem like a no-brainer, but candy tends to be loaded with sugar. Like desserts, candy should be a rare treat.
It’s important to recognize that many food manufacturers and restaurants enhance the taste of food by adding high-calorie ingredients, like sugar, to enhance the flavor of their foods. Many popular sauces, dressings, and condiments contain an enormous amount of calories for the volume of the ingredient. For example, one tablespoon of mayonnaise adds almost 100 calories to a dish. Adding jelly to a peanut butter sandwich can also add about 100 calories. Be as conscientious about what you add to your food as you are about choosing the food itself.
Which Foods Should You Eat to Burn Belly Fat?
If there are foods you should avoid, it stands to reason that there are foods you can eat that will help you trim your waistline. Here are a few of the foods that you should try to gravitate to if you want to lose belly fat.
- Leafy Greens – Leafy greens, like spinach and kale, have high amounts of iron, vitamin A, vitamin C, and vitamin K. In addition, you can eat a high quantity of them, which will help you feel full.
- Lean Meat – Lean meats require more calories to digest, which means they aid in raising your metabolism. Good lean meats include chicken breast, white turkey meat, and low-fat cuts of beef. If you eat the skin with your poultry, you are adding calories to your meal.
- Beans and Grains – Beans are relatively high in protein for the calories you’re consuming. Oats and non-processed rice can also be added to your diet for variety.
- Fiber-rich Fruits – Too much fruit can lead to excess sugar in your diet, but some fruits are particularly good at fighting belly fat.
- Seeds and Nuts – Plant proteins are a great way to build the protein in your diet.
- Fish – While also being rich in protein, fish contains omega-3 fatty acids, which can help reduce visceral fat.
This is by no means a comprehensive list, and there may be more elements that you can add to your diet. Remember to consider more than just the calorie count.
Other Ways to Lose Belly Fat
Belly fat can be among the most stubborn types of fat to lose. The tendency to carry belly fat depends largely upon age, gender (men tend to accumulate belly fat at a higher rate than women), lifestyle, and genetics. Another reason that belly fat is harder to lose is that it’s often set deeper inside your abdomen than in other parts of the body. Fat tends to accumulate in and around muscles, but belly fat has more pathways to grow inward and surround the organs, which is one of the reasons why it’s more dangerous than other types of fat.
Laser lipolysis can target fat cells in and around the belly. How this works is that the technician uses the laser to bore tiny pores in the fat cells closest to the skin. The laser also heats the lipids contained inside. These emulsified lipids can then drain through the pores, where they can be safely disposed of by the body’s lymphatic system.
Emerald Laser is the state-of-the-art laser fat-reduction system developed by Erchonia — a pioneer in the field of laser-assisted fat loss. The Emerald Laser System is comprised of ten 532-nanometer, low-intensity lasers. These lasers are powerful enough to be effective without killing the fat cells. Killing fat cells is particularly dangerous when it comes to belly fat because, if the patient does gain weight later, it can accumulate around the vital organs.
Erchonia had the first fat-reduction laser approved by the FDA, and Emerald is the only laser system approved for individuals with a BMI over 30. Moreover, Emerald Laser was proven effective at reducing body circumference with multiple double-blind studies:
- Free of side effects
If you are struggling with belly fat or fat in another region of your body, contact an Emerald Laser provider near you to schedule an initial consultation.