Ever feel like you can’t eat anything without having to check out the calories out of fear of gaining weight. Well, say no more, because today we will be sharing things that you can eat without having to track calories and still lose weight while still eating reasonably. So, without further ado, Let’s get into it.
A single serving of lentils, which is roughly 1 cup, is just 230-250 calories and a whopping 18 grams of protein. Not only is it a natural protein powder that tastes delicious but is a source of iron, folate, fiber and magnesium.
Women who have iron deficiency or low-levels of hemoglobin benefit greatly from consuming lentils. Whereas the vitamin folate, which is also in lentils, helps support cell growth and is essential during pregnancy. So, not only are lentils a great low calorie, high protein, highly-versatile and plant-based alternative to meat. It helps you lose weight or even build muscle as well, should you choose to add it to your diet without having to think about tracking calories.
Did I mention this already? It’s one of the cheapest high quality sources of protein and fiber while being low in fat.
This brings us to our other biggest contender when it comes to satiation and versatility. Cauliflower. If your goal is to lose weight, then cauliflower might just be what you were looking for. 1-cup of cauliflower is only 25 calories, 2 grams of protein, 5 grams of carbs and 2 grams of dietary fiber. Cauliflower is both cholesterol and fat free, which makes it something anyone can eat just like lentils.
Cauliflower is high in vitamin C, which is essential for a stronger immune system. Not only that, contrary to the popular belief, cauliflower has more vitamin C than an orange. It’s also a good source of folate.
Now, as far as versatility goes, Cauliflower can be consumed raw, cooked, grilled and even used as a substitute for mashed potatoes. You can always stir-fry it with other vegetables and make a delicious stir-fry that you can eat all you want without the thought of having to “track calories”. Yes, these things have calories but they are so low that is actually hard to over eat them and they taste delicious. What else can you ask for?
Cabbage does not fall behind when it comes to calories and versatility. Seeing as that, just a single cup (100grams) has only 25 calories. 2 grams of fiber, 1 gram of protein, 0.1 grams of fat, 0 cholesterol and is loaded with anti-oxidants and has an anti-inflammatory effect that eases inflation which decreases the chances of heat disease. It’s also rich in Vitamin A, C , K, fiber, potassium, magnesium and folate as well.
The fiber content in cabbage is high, which helps keep you full. So you eat less. It also lowers the “Bad” cholesterol (LDL) in the body and regulates your blood sugar and can also help lower chances of type-2 diabetes. It also helps keep the lining of your stomach and intestines strong. The benefits of cabbage are exponential. There is a reason most Nordic diets consist of cabbage.
As far as versatility goes. It beats cauliflower by a mile. You can just chop it up and eat it raw or add it to your salads. You can even use cabbage leaves as tortillas and drastically reduce the calories of your wraps and make them healthier at the same time while reducing your carb intake, reducing bloating. You can boil it, steam it, sauté it, stir-fry it and, yes, you can ferment it as well (Kimchi).
All in all, this makes cabbage sound like an all-you-can-eat and not get fat food. Which it actually is. So why track calories?
There is a reason spinach is in our Top 10 Muscle Building Foods List. Considering that it’s just 66 calories per pack with a gram of fat, 8 grams of protein and no cholesterol at all. Spinach is rich in iron, potassium as well as vitamin E & magnesium. Adding spinach to your diet will do wonders for your hair, nail and skin health as spinach is rich in vitamins such as iron, vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Folate and Biotin.
Research done on spinach shows that it lowers glucose levels, increases insulin sensitivity and prevents oxidative stress-induced changes in patients with diabetes. It even helps prevent constipation due to its high fiber and water content. The potassium in spinach can manage blood pressure as potassium reduces the effects of sodium in the body.
Now add to all this the fact that it’s a protein-rich food. That can be classified as a meat alternative to a muscle-building diet. You do not need to worry about tracking calories when it comes to spinach. The fiber content in spinach gets you satiated while the protein satiates your muscles from an intense workout session. You can add spinach as a stir fry to your dishes or just as garnish to your salads. This makes it an effective form of easily consumable protein just in line with a protein powder. So not only do you not have to track calories, you also get the added benefit of more protein.
When it comes to satiation and feeling full while loving what you are eating. Egg plants take the win. Why? because just a cup of eggplant which is just 100 grams contains 22-25 calories and has 3 grams of fiber. That is a relatively high amount of fiber in comparison to how few calories it has.
An egg plant is bound to satiate your hunger just based on its fiber content alone. Egg plants are rich in antioxidants such as Vitamin A and C and protect your cells against damage and egg plants. They are also high in chemicals known as polyphenols, which may help your cells perform better when it comes to processing sugar if you already suffer from diabetes. You don’t need to track calories as long as you cook them reasonably and with less oils.
Due to the high fiber content in egg plants, your digestive system will improve while the saponin in it will help prevent fat accumulation and absorption, which makes it another excellent weight-loss food.
Mushrooms should be your go-to when it comes to health in general. mushrooms can provide you with vitamin D. Especially, if you’re someone who doesn’t want to rely on pills to get your Vitamin D and doesn’t get enough sunlight daily. Adding mushrooms to your diet can fix that for you.
Mushrooms are good for both your brain and gut health while also being rich in vitamin B6 and selenium. Both of which are essential in preventing cell damage and production of red blood cells. Not only that, people who can’t eat more sodium or choose not to can add mushrooms to both their dishes to give a savory taste to their meals without the need to add salt.
A cup of mushrooms (100 grams) is just 22 calories. 3 grams of carbs, 3.3 grams of protein, 0 fat and 0 cholesterol. From a muscle building perspective. Just 3 cups of mushrooms (300 grams) is 10 grams of protein and that’s just about 70 calories. However, while 3 cups of mushrooms may be fine. Overconsumption of anything can be a problem. So, it’s always recommended to eat different protein-rich foods instead of overconsuming ones, which can affect your health negatively.
If you’re looking for a power food that has it all when it comes to hair, nail , skin health and can help you lose weight and even build muscle. Lettuce is your go-to for five. A cup which is roughly (100 grams) contains 15 calories, 0 fat ,2.9 carbs, 1.9 grams of fiber (Yes, almost 2 grams for just 15 calories) and 1.4 grams of protein.
So, for 15 calories you get 1.5 grams of protein and 2 grams of fiber. Both of which can make you feel satiated and full for longer and eating 100 calories worth of lettuce (1000 grams) will net you 14 grams of protein and 13 grams of fiber. That’s the best protein to fiber ratio that you will ever get as far as satiation goes. Whatever your goal is, you just cannot go wrong with lettuce.
Lettuce is a source of Vitamin K which helps enhance bone strength and helps prevent bone fractures. It’s also a source of vitamin A, which is responsible for a better immune system, reproduction , growth and development. Vitamin A also affects heart health and proper organ functionality.
You can eat lettuce on its own, add it to your salads or even grill it. In a soup or even make it into a sauce with dried herbs. You can make wraps out of lettuce and add other sources of protein to the wrap. Even use it as a substitute for your sandwiches instead of bread or buns, basically allowing you to cut down on carbs and get rid of stomach bloat. The calories in lettuce are so so less that even if you do not track these calories. You wont have to worry about anything.
Kale is another amazing green that is high in various vitamins such as A,C,K,B6, Folate. This allows you to benefit from better eye, nail, hair, skin health as well as help you with better iron absorption. Making kale a healthy superfood. Not only that, a cup (100grams) is just about 25 calories, 2 grams of protein and 2 grams of fiber, 5 grams of carbs, no cholesterol and no fat, as well as low sodium.
You can add kale to your salads or your stir fries to add more flavor to it. Kale chips is another option that you can go with or just blend them up in the form of a smoothie. However, be careful. Liquid calories are easily digested by the body and can result in you being more hungry later. It’s better to avoid smoothies if possible. Especially when trying to lose weight and stay full.
A few Apples a day will surely keep you from getting over weight. An apple is not just a way to avoid your doctor (which it really isn’t). However, it’s an amazing source of fiber. Its one of the most high in fiber and affordable healthier options when it comes to staying full and losing weight. A large apple, which is about 220 grams, consists of 5 grams of fiber. That is the most you can get out of any fruit as far as taste and affordability goes.
It’s a good source of Vitamin A,C,E,K, which means it supports bone, heart, immune, hair, nail, skin health. It’s also been used as a weight management tool due to it’s high fiber content. Try eating two large apples and see how it starts suppressing your hunger. That’s 10 grams of fiber right there. However, try not to peel your apples and eat them skin on for more fiber, as peeling them reduces the fiber in the apple.
Now, other than eating it on its own, you can add apples to your salads, bake them and then make a sauce out of them. You can even add spices like cinnamon to apple slices baked or raw and eat it as a snack. Apples can help you satisfy your sugar cravings once you start eating them while keeping you full. It’s in fact one of the healthiest foods you can eat on any diet plan.
Strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, whatever kind you decide to go with. All of them are low in calories and full of fiber and antioxidants, which can not only allow you to stay full and in turn lose weight but improve overall health. If you have a sweet tooth, that can be satisfied as well. You can eat them on your own, cook them and make a jam out of them and use it as a spread. You can even add it as a topping to other dishes.
A cup of strawberries is just about 54 calories (166 grams) and contains about 3.3 grams of fiber. Even though the fiber content is lower than that of an apple or any other foods mentioned here. It makes up with its incredible taste. You cannot just go on a diet and sacrifice taste and berries are where you can both enjoy the sweet taste as well as get in as much fiber as possible without feeling like you are dieting.
A cup of blueberries (148 grams) is about 84 calories and 3.6 grams of fiber. Whereas a cup of blackberries (144 grams) is 62 calories and contains 7.6 grams of fiber, which is the highest of all three.
No matter what your goal is, whether you are trying to lose weight, gain muscle in a healthier way or, over all, health in general. You can do that without having to log in calories every single day or worry about them in general with these foods as not only do they taste great and have amazing versatility. They are so low in calories that you actually wont need to track calories at all.
It’s not necessarily a bad thing to track calories. however, trying to track every single calorie can make you obsessed leading to body dysmorphia. The key is to find the balance and to track calories in a healthy way. If you like what you read or have any question. You can leave a comment or ask us on Quora