10 Of The Best Breakfast Foods For Weight Loss

1. Coffee

Coffee lovers know of no better beverage to start the day. Caffeine helps to increase metabolic rate and burn more calories. Study participants burned an extra 79–150 calories in 24 hours after consuming 100 mg of caffeine a day.[1][2]

The caffeine in coffee has also been proven to help improve mood and mental function. Coffee is also rich in antioxidants, and a study has found coffee to be the number one source of antioxidants in the U.S. diet. The antioxidants in coffee have been associated with a lower risk of diseases such as diabetes and Alzheimer’s.

Takeaway: Skip the cream and sugar to avoid the extra calories. About 0.3 to 4 cups of coffee a day, depending on strength, provides the optimal dose of caffeine without the undesirable side effects.[3]

2. Green Tea

Research has shown that 5 cups of green tea a day can increase your metabolism and help you lose weight. Studies have proven that the caffeine in green tea as well as the antioxidant EGCG helps to promote thermogenesis, the process of heat production in the body. When thermogenesis is increased, energy expenditure and fat metabolism increases. EGCG not only enhances the ability to use fat but also reduces the ability to absorb fat.[4][5][6][7]

All tea is antioxidant rich, but green tea is one of the healthiest teas of them all. Regular consumption of green tea can also help to protect the brain from Alzheimer’s and other kinds of dementia.[8]

Takeaway: The EGCG content of green tea varies, depending on the processing technique and area of cultivation. The brewing time also affects the final EGCG content. Brewing a cup of Ti Kuon Yin tea for 2 minutes provides 9mg EGCG a cup. Brewing a cup of gyokuro tea for 10 minutes provides 540mg EGCG a cup.

3. Oatmeal

Oats is an excellent breakfast choice for weight loss. Oats has been found to have the highest satiety (feeling of fullness) value of all breakfast meals. Researchers have also found the fiber in oats known as beta glucan can increase levels of the PYY hormone, which is associated with appetite control.[9]

LDL cholesterol levels are also reduced by beta-glucan, which can also improve insulin sensitivity and help to boost the immune system.

Takeaway: Choose rolled oats or steel cut oats over the instant varieties, and avoid sugar packed flavored oats. Rather sweeten your oats with honey, fruit or raisins. Oats can be part of a gluten free diet as they are naturally gluten free.[10] But they must originate from sources that guarantee it as gluten free as they are often contaminated with wheat when processed.

4. Eggs

Eggs make a perfect high protein breakfast. Eggs increase the feeling of fullness, which can help to reduce calorie intake throughout the day. Eating a high quality protein breakfast as part of a weight loss diet will help maintain lean muscle mass.[11]

The antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin in egg yolks can help to prevent macular degeneration.

Takeaway: Although one egg yolk contains about 60% of the daily allotted dietary cholesterol, research has shown that cholesterol in food has less of an impact on blood cholesterol than previously believed.

5. Greek Yogurt

Greek yogurt contains almost twice as much protein as regular yogurt. Protein can help you to eat less as well as increase metabolism by as much as 15 – 30%. Yogurt also helps to increases levels of the appetite hormones GLP-1 and PYY.[12] Greek yogurt also has conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), which can help to produce a modest loss in body fat.[13]

Takeaway: Sprinkle berries liberally on top of Greek yogurt to add some flavor and to boost the nutritional value.

6. Cottage Cheese

Cottage cheese is high in protein which helps to increase metabolism. Cottage cheese can also increase the feeling of fullness and satisfy as much as eggs.[14] CLA is also found in full-fat cottage cheese and can help with fat metabolism.[13]

Takeaway: Use cottage cheese as a filling for omelettes for some extra protein.

7. Grapefruit

Eating half a fresh grapefruit before breakfast can help to boost weight loss efforts.[16] Grapefruit also helps to hydrate, which is important for maintaining weight.

Takeaway: Be cautious if you are taking any meds as grapefruit can interfere with some medications.

6. Blueberries

Blueberries are low in calories and high in fiber. A study has shown that blueberries can help in reducing belly fat. This is believed to be due to the high levels of phytochemicals in blueberries. Research has shown that blueberry consumption affects the genes associated with fat burning and fat storage.

Blueberries also help to protect against age related macular degeneration and high blood pressure.

Takeaway: Add blueberries to your Greek yogurt or oatmeal for an added weight loss boost.

7. Natural Peanut Butter

Although peanut butter is high in fat and calories, it can provide a satisfied feeling of fullness for several hours after eating. Study participants who ate peanut butter in the morning had higher levels of the PYY fullness hormone.

Takeaway: Besides the obvious addition of peanut butter to your morning toast, try a tablespoon or two in your oatmeal. Avoid processed peanut butter which is filled with sugar and unhealthy oils.

8. Avocados

Avocados are also a good source of monounsaturated fat and fiber, both of which keep you feeling fuller longer.[17]. Study participants who ate avocado felt 23% more satisfied and had a 28% lower desire to eat over the next 5 hours.[18] Oleic fatty acids found in avocados have also been shown to reduce abdominal fat. A study has also suggested the presence of an appetite suppressant in avocados.

Takeaway: Try baking an egg in one half of an avocado for something different. Substitute avocado for margarine or butter to help reduce calories. Use avocado as a filling in omelettes.

9. Flaxseeds

Flaxseeds are rich in viscous fiber, which can help you feeling full for several hours after eating. There are 3 grams of protein and 4 grams of fiber in two tablespoons of ground flaxseeds.

Flaxseeds can also help to improve insulin sensitivity and protect against breast cancer.

Takeaway: Add ground flaxseeds to Greek yogurt or your oatmeal to increase the fiber content of your breakfast.

10. Coconut Oil

Research has shown that not only does coconut oil not increase body fat, it also reduces white fat stores. The medium-chain fats found in coconut are absorbed and used as an energy source more easily than other kinds of fat.

Takeaway: Fry your eggs in coconut oil or add a tablespoon to your oatmeal.

Image Source: Scripps