Weight loss is best achieved through eating healthily, as well as regular exercise. When it comes to diet, experts recommend eating at least five portions of a variety of fruit and vegetables every day, basing meals on higher fibre starchy foods like potatoes and rice, eating some dairy or dairy alternative, some protein, and choosing unsaturated oils and spreads and eating them in small amounts. You should also reduce your intake of salt and saturated fat. Individual foods have also been proven to aid weight loss – one in particular, considered a supplement, is chia seeds.
Chia seeds are edible seeds from the salvia hispanica plant, which is a flowing plant in the mind family native to Central America.
Over the recent years, chia seeds have been dubbed a superfood, and their fibre content have been shown to temporarily suppress appetite.
They have been found to suppress appetite by making a person feel fuller for longer.
One study investigated whether chia seeds promote weight loss in people with type 2 diabetes.
The study involved 77 participants who were either overweight or obese.
All of the participants followed a calorie restricted diet for six months, but one group ate Salba chia daily, while the other group ate mainly oat-bran based food.
Those who didn’t consume the chia lost 0.3kg on average.
Participants who ate chia lost an average of 1.9kg and showed significant average reduction in weight circumference compared with the control group.
Chia seeds can be eaten raw, and studies have shown relatively high doses are fine to use.
They can be enjoyed in a number of ways – Holland & Barrett has three suggestions:
- Dry chia seeds can be sprinkled on a salad
- Mix some into a yoghurt or vegan alternative
- Add to a glass of fruit juice so they soak up some of the juice but will still be slightly crunchy
Another supplement proven to help aid weight loss is whey protein.
Whey protein is a mixture of proteins separated from the casein in milk or formed as a by-product of cheese making.
It’s considered a complete protein as it contains all nine essential amino acids and is low in lactose content.
Eating more protein has been found to promote fat loss by boosting a person’s metabolism, helping to burn more calories.
Whey protein has been proven particularly effective and may have a superior effect on fat burning compared to other types of protein.
Another study showed replacing some of your calories with they protein can cause weight loss of about eight pounds over time, while increasing muscle mass.
Protein is one of three macronutrients found to help a person feeler fuller – the two others are carbohydrates and fat.
But protein is by far the most filling of the three, according to one study.