Can You Eat to Lose Weight?

by Angela Yorke | August 27th, 2012 | Diet Strategy, Superfoods

Generally, a “superfood” is a food that confers overwhelmingly positive benefits to health, usually in terms of vital nutrients and antioxidant content, and helps you lose weight, hence its “super” status. The majority of superfoods appear to be of plant origin, which perhaps lends more credence to the idea that one type of food can be better for your health than another type because they are usually less processed than food of animal origin.

The apparent first reference to the term was made in Nature Nutrition in 1998, and skeptics opine that marketers have since virtually seized possession the term, leading to such foods being perceived as especially important, albeit pricier, elements of a healthful diet; however, one aspect of superfoods that remains undisputed is that those who eat them report feeling better. They then felt more inclined to continue a fitness routine.

Yet, superfoods are not a magic bullet for weight loss and fitness. If anything, it’s likely that food portions and the frequency with which you eat a certain type of food have a greater influence on fitness and weight than the type of food you eat. Thus, you might eat nothing but superfoods such as broccoli, Swiss chard, oranges, salmon, mackerel, beets, legumes, and any number of (blue)berries, but remain at an unhealthy weight and fitness status if that is all you do.

In fact, excess consumption of a “superfood,” such as certain types of seaweed, might also lead to unwanted health consequences as a result of other elements present in the food that can be detrimental to health. Moreover, the body doesn’t store excess quantities of vitamins and other such nutrients; instead, these and other elements in food that are surplus to requirements are excreted.

Overall, it is insufficient to rely on a particular category of food to help you lose weight, while eating too much of such food might lead to weight gain. Thus, eating food that is good for you, i.e., superfoods, in moderation is a key aspect to success if you’re dieting to lose weight and improve fitness.

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All health and fitness information is provided for educational purposes. Please consult with your physician before beginning any exercise regimen.