Negative calorie foods can be eaten as often as you want without having to feel an ounce of guilt. Finally, the saying “eat to live, don’t live to eat,” can be reversed.
Negative calorie foods take more energy to chew and digest than they actually contain, so you’ll never have to worry about eating these foods in large quantities or gaining weight from them. They also contain ample amounts of vitamins, fiber and antioxidants. Next time you’re in the mood for a snack, reach for one of these foods instead of that bag of chips, which we all know does more harm than good.
One cup of celery contains less than 20 calories. It’s rich in fiber, full of water and can even help reduce the risk of ovarian cancer. By the time you prepare, wash, eat and digest it, the 20 calories — and then some — will be long gone.
Check out this delicious South Beach diet shrimp and celery salad >>
Lettuce contains a mere 8 calories per cup. Essentially, lettuce is water — making it impossible to gain weight from eating it. Richer greens — such as romaine — have the same amount of calories but also contain iron and magnesium. Next time a salad is offered at dinner, don’t skip out! It will help fill you up without adding unnecessary fat and calories — just make sure to choose a low-fat dressing.
Pickles and cucumbers
Cucumbers have 15 calories per cup and pickles have just 17 (assuming there’s no sugar added). Make sure to eat the skin since that contains all the fiber. The rest of the cucumber is mostly water and lacks vital vitamins and nutrients. Still, at so few calories, you can consume as many as you’d like guilt-free.
So healthy it’s even got its own diet named after it, grapefruit is known to reduce bloating by flushing water through the body. Though it does contain calories, it also contains an antioxidant known as naringenin, which triggers the liver to break down fat.
Apples are filling, healthy and will satisfy your sweet-tooth craving. Apples typically contain 100 calories for a medium-sized one and take 120 to digest. Apples also contain vitamin C, plenty of antioxidants and can help lower cholesterol.
This nutrient-rich vegetable has just 25 calories in half a cup. It contains vitamin A, vitamin C, both soluble and insoluble fiber, folic acid and calcium. It controls high blood pressure and can help prevent colon cancer. Even if you’re not looking to lose weight, broccoli is worth eating for all the other benefits it provides.
Lemons cleanse the body and can add flavor to a rather dull meal. Put some in warm water and drink in the morning to jump-start your metabolism for the day. Lemons also promote immunity and fight infections, with research confirming they even protect against a variety of poisons.
Like lemons, garlic adds flavor to food without adding calories. It reduces cholesterol and contains mustard oils, which help wash out fat cells from the body. If you’re not a huge fan of garlic, dice it up extra small to minimize the flavor.
Watermelon and mangoes
Both watermelon and mangoes consist of mostly water. Watermelon has just 80 calories per cup and one whole mango has about 150 calories. Both are high in sugar though, so consider eating to satisfy a sweet craving instead of as a way to burn extra calories.
Asparagus, like grapefruit, flushes water out of the body by acting as a diuretic. It contains a chemical that helps break down fat cells and can reduce body fat overall. Not only does asparagus act as a fat repellant, it also is used for anti-aging purposes, protects against cancer and can reduce pain and inflammation.