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3 Whole Grains That Help You Lose Weight

Whole grains are a weight-loss secret weapon. Your body digests them more slowly than the refined kind (like you'd find in white pasta or white rice), and they help protect your heart. But brown rice...again? Don't despair. Registered dietitian Kate Geagan has a few alternatives.

1. FARRO (pronounced FAHR-oh): This nutty-flavored type of wheat is rich in feel-full fiber. Research also shows that farro is higher in disease-fighting antioxidants than whole-grain bread.

DINNER IDEA: Use it in place of rice in risotto, or add cooked farro to salad for some chewy-good texture.

2. CHIA (pronounced CHEE-yah): These mini black seeds (yes, the same ones you used to grow hair on your Chia Pet!) are a great source of alpha-linoleic acid, a type of omega-3. One tablespoon also has 5 grams of fiber and 3 grams of filling protein.

BREAKFAST IDEA: You don't need to cook chia seeds; just sprinkle a tiny handful into yogurt.

3. QUINOA (pronounced KEEN-wah): Quinoa's claim to fame is that unlike other grains, it's a complete protein. That means you don't have to pair it with another protein source like meat or dairy. It's quick, too, cooking up in about half the time it takes to make rice.

SIDE IDEA: Toss with chopped veggies and your favorite dressing for a healthy "pasta" salad.

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