5 items for the weight loss kitchen
There are so many things to take into consideration when trying to loose weight, including the taste of the food you're eating and the little places that calories can hide. These items are proven healthy additions to any diet, and are essential when trying to loose weight for their low-calorie, high-taste impacts and, for some, their abilities to increase weight loss.
1. Olive Oil.
This is the only oil that can be used without being processed and is pressed and bottled straight from the olive fruit. It contains a high amount of monounsaturated fatty acids and antioxidants, and has been proven to lower bad cholesterol, raise good cholesterol, protect against heart disease and colon cancer. Research has even found that replacing other fats and oils with monounsaturated fat-like olive oil-can help loose weight, even without other dietary changes or exercise. Use it in salad dressing, sautés, stir fry, with pasta, in marinade, as a dipping for bread (with a little balsamic vinegar-mm!). Replace canola, vegetable, other oils, and butter with olive oil in all your cooking.
Garlic contains allicin, which has antibiotic effects and reduces bad fats and cholesterol. Like olive oil, it lowers bad cholesterol, raises good cholesterol, protects against heart disease and lung and colon cancer. There is anecdotal evidence as well that garlic increases your metabolism-there is hard evidence that it helps your circulation, which may help you hit the gym and reap its benefits. Mince a couple cloves in pasta sauce, salad dressing, roast an entire head and spread the softened cloves on bread-add it to everything. It can be used as a salt replacement and flavor enhancer for even the dullest boiled chicken breasts.
3. Hot sauce.
Peppers and hot spices can slightly boost metabolism, so spice it up! Add jalapenos to rice and beans and sprinkle Tabasco on your scrambled (in olive oil) egg whites. The metabolism boost is actually quite small and short lived, according to studies, but it is there, and the extra flavor can make vegetables and chicken far more tasty.
This should replace mayonnaise in all your sandwiches. It is quite healthy and there are far more varieties than the bright yellow mustard that we know from childhood picnics. Try a hot mustard, or stoneground mustard, Dijon and honey mustard. Add mustard to salad dressing, use it on a sandwich, and dress up turkey and chicken breasts with it.
Another wonderful condiment with versatile uses. Vinegar itself won't help you loose weight-there are proponents that claim apple cider vinegar will, but research has not proven it. There are, however, a variety of vinegar flavors that can be played with and dress up any dish. There is no need to ever buy salad dressing-corn syrup and maldexatrose laden concoctions that have sat on the store shelf for who knows how long. There's an adage that if there are more than 6 ingredients, don't eat it-so always make your own salad dressing. Try red wine, balsamic, white wine, or apple cider vinegar with some olive oil, a little mustard, salt and pepper. It is fresh and healthy and tastes better than anything store bought. Add it when stir frying vegetables for flavor and use it in marinades. There is even evidence that vinegar lowers the glycemic index of foods (this means good things for weight loss), and while it hasn't been definitively proven, vinegar is an essential item in any weight loss kitchen.