30+ Foods That Burn Calories

facts about food

Most people associate metabolism with weight loss or gain, and although fast metabolism will affect your size, the truth is that a slow metabolism isn’t to blame for packing on pounds.

The question is not whether or not you have a fast or slow metabolism, but what you do with the calories.



Metabolism is the process in which your body converts food into fuel, or energy if you prefer, and we need this energy for necessary functions such as breathing, blood circulation, cell repairing, and digestion.

There is also something called the resting metabolic rate (RMR), which is up to 75 percent of the calories we consume every day. (Most) women, for instance, need 1200 calories (plus 200 to 400 calories for daily activities, even more, if you are exercising regularly) every day to support the RMR.

The calories your body cannot use end up stored in the body. Therefore, to put it simply, if you consume more calories than your metabolism needs, you will gain weight.

As you already know, physical activity is important if you wish to boost your metabolism; building muscle’s strength is a way to speed up your metabolism.  However, what about the food we eat? Can certain food speed up our metabolism and why?


Fat burning food

It is important to understand what the term “fat burning food” means. Foods that take more time and energy for our body to digest is fat burning food. For instance, celery. We burn more energy (calories) to digest celery than the calories in the entire celery.

Fat burning food is also called thermogenic, and protein is actually thermogenic. Some say that as much as 30 percent of calories from protein are burned during digestion.

Fat burning foods should be easily introduced into the diet because these foods should also be easy to prepare. Food with fat burning properties is versatile food, and it is moreover beneficial for our health in multiple ways.

To get more familiar with fat burning food, we have listed 30+ foods you can include in your diet.


Caffeinated Green or Black Tea

Stimulants have fat burning properties because they give us a feeling that we have more energy; thus we tend to be more physically active.

Caffeine also influences on metabolic changes in the body, so we even burn more calories. Studies showed that when caffeine is consumed with a meal, calories spent are increased by 10 percent.

black tea - 30+ Foods That Burn Calories

Tea also interferes with the body’s absorption of carbohydrate when consumed in the same meal. One more benefit of drinking tea is that a cup of tea has zero calories.


Low-fat Dairy

Low-fat dairy is rich in calcium, and although calcium cannot influence on burning more calories, when we consume calcium from low-fat dairy, we absorb fewer fat calories from the meal.

30+ Foods That Burn Calories

One study showed that eating more calcium-rich food is linked to lower amounts of belly fat.



Avocados boost metabolism by protecting the parts of the cells that produce the energy from free radical damage. The monounsaturated fat in avocados enables cells to connect better with fat burning hormones. This is very beneficial because of the impact on the body’s fat storage hormones.

Avocado with tomatoes for breakfast or avocado in a spinach salad is an excellent addition to the diet if you want to burn fat faster.


Chia Seeds

Chia seeds are great for metabolism due to omega-3 fats, fiber and protein. By suppressing the appetite, these seeds turn on glucagon, one of the body’s fat-burning hormones.

Chia seeds - 30+ Foods That Burn Calories

The best is to soak them for 15 minutes because the larger the seeds, the faster our stomach will release those hormones. Chia energy bar a day is enough to let our body know it is satisfied.


Brazil Nuts

Brazil nuts are great fat-burning food because they convert the thyroid hormone to its active form. By binding up toxins that would otherwise be stored in fat cells, Brazil nuts also contribute to reducing cellulite.

Consume them as snacks, or drink Brazil nut milk.



Oysters are low in calories (only 50 calories for six oysters) and a rich source of zinc, a mineral that helps decrease the appetite and cravings. When dining out, oysters are a great option.


Wild Salmon

If you consume wild salmon regularly, you will strip abdominal fat. Wild salmon is rich in omega-3 fats that improve insulin sensitivity that in turn reduces fat from your waistline. Wild salmon also activates the thyroid hormone that increases metabolism.

Salmon - 30+ Foods That Burn Calories


Coconut oil

Coconut oils are beneficial in numerous ways, and the benefits we are most familiar with are those related to our skin and hair. This oil is rich in medium-chained triglycerides that our body uses for energy, leaving less opportunity for them to be stored as fat.

Cook with coconut oil, and this is the best way to include it in your diet.



Lentils are an excellent source of iron, and when our body lacks iron, our metabolism slows down. Including lentils in diets will increase the iron intake and enable our metabolism to work efficiently. One cup of lentils packs has 35 percent of our daily iron needs.


Hot peppers

Capsaicin, a compound that gives the peppers the kick we like, helps burn additional calories and heats our body. Raw, cooked, dried, or powdered peppers are equally beneficial for calorie burning.

Add as many hot peppers as you can to your meals. Hot peppers reduce bad fat in the arteries and speed up heart rate as well.



If you love cinnamon, then you are on your way to speed up your metabolism. This spice helps move glucose into the cells faster, so insulin, a fat storage hormone, decreases.

Cinnamon - 30+ Foods That Burn Calories

You need to eat at least a quarter of a teaspoon of cinnamon to get all the benefits.



Broccoli has phytonutrient sulforaphane that stimulates an enzyme which tells your fat cells to burn fat. Broccoli is also a low-calorie vegetable and has a significant amount of fiber that is very important for digestion.

Broccoli - 30+ Foods That Burn Calories

Overall, broccoli is an excellent accompaniment in any meal and filling.


Whole grains

Whole grains are rich in fiber, especially brown rice and oatmeal. Our body burns more calories breaking down whole foods than processed foods.

Whole grain bread is high in nutritional benefits of the seeds that contain. Remember that brown bread does not necessarily mean whole grain because some brown bread contains coloring.


Lean meats

Protein is essential for increasing the metabolic rate. When we eat protein, due to the high thermogenic effect, we burn 30 percent of the calories the food contains during digestion.

Chicken breasts require about 90 calories to break down.



Due to antioxidants, berries are excellent protection against harmful free radicals. Apart from containing essential nutrients beneficial for our overall health, berries are boosting our body’s energy and we tend to move more and to burn more calories.

Berries - All What You Need To Know About Anti Aging Food – A 101 Guide

Add berries to oatmeal, yogurt, low-fat ice cream, cereals or eat them raw.



Rich in vitamin C and fiber, oranges are high fat burning food. Vitamin C is promoting the production of carnitine in the body which oxidizes fatty acids, that is, burn fat.

Eat them fresh, rather than in the form of juice or supplements.


Greek Yogurt


Greek yogurt has a significant amount of protein; thus it makes it a delicious weight loss food. It is known that protein takes longer to leave the stomach, making us feeling satisfied for longer, and our body burns more calories digesting protein. Opt for non-fat, low-fat and low-sugar yogurts.



Excellent source of protein (8 grams) and fiber (5 grams) in one cup, quinoa is another weight loss food you should include in your diet.

It is an excellent choice for dinner, mainly because it is packed with zinc, selenium, iron and vitamin E.



Protein in the morning will keep hunger at bay, many studies showed. One egg has only 75 calories, 7 grams of high-quality protein, and other essential nutrients.

As with other protein food, our body will burn more calories digesting eggs than carbs.

Eggs - 30+ Foods That Burn Calories

In case you have high cholesterol, one egg is all the cholesterol you should have daily. Opt for egg whites, which have no cholesterol.



Bananas in diets, especially in the morning, are very beneficial for the digestive system. Bananas will also satisfy us faster and keep the feeling of fullness longer.

They are easy to incorporate into daily nutrition because they are a very versatile fruit; however, perhaps you should stick to one banana a day because they are a good source of sugar as well.

Bananas are resistant starch, and when we eat them, it means our body changes the order of the use of the food we eat, which means fats are the first that our body uses, which means they are no longer stored in the body.


Olive oil

Olive oil is one of the best oils you can benefit from losing weight. Apart from having essential nutrients that our body need, it is also healthier than other salad dressing or oils that are considered bad fats.



Asparagus assist our body in expelling toxins and other wastes, and it helps with digestion and keeps the good bacteria in your gut.

Packed with vitamins and minerals, asparagus is also a superfood.

Asparagus - 30+ Foods That Burn Calories

Asparagus is versatile and easy to prepare, so do not forget to make it an addition to your regular meal. As a natural diuretic, it is very beneficial for overall health.



Spinach is necessary for a healthy lifestyle and a great addition to the diets. It is also very beneficial for weight loss because it adds bulk to your stomach without tacking on the calories.

Green vegetables are necessary for healthy nutrition.



Tomatoes are low in calories and contain fiber that is necessary for proper digestion. Due to these properties, tomatoes give us the feeling of fullness for longer.

The lycopene brings antioxidants that are very beneficial for overall health.



Cantaloupe is an excellent addition to the diet as well. It is sweet, not high in calories, it has fiber in it, and our body burns more calories digesting cantaloupe than what it contains.

In fruit salads, or by itself, it is a great snack. Also, it helps our skin looks great.



Mushrooms are low in calories and high in vitamin content. There are different mushrooms you can opt for, and do try to include the ones that look a little strange rather than the button mushrooms.

Whatever you choose, make sure you include them in your diet, because they all can help you lose weight.



Apples are high in pectin that binds with water and limits the amount of fat your cells can absorb. Due to the high fiber content, you will feel full longer.

Apples - 30+ Foods That Burn Calories

Numerous studies showed that if you eat an apple half an hour before a meal, you will eat fewer calories.

Apples are also rich in antioxidants.


Pine nuts

Pine nuts are rich in heart-healthy fatty acids. These nuts boost levels of a hormone called ghrelin, which sends signals to your brain that you are full. When the levels of this hormone are high, you can resist cravings better.

According to some studies, those fatty acids will help prevent the formation of belly fat, which is considered the most dangerous.



Balsamic and white wine vinegar is one of the most delicious kinds of vinegar you can add to your diets, but any other vinegar will help you lose weight and burn fat as well. Vinegar aid the body in storing carbohydrates as muscle glycogen rather than storing them as fat. Vinegar also lowers the insulin response to carbs and improves digestion.



Garlic contains a component called allicin, and this component is an excellent aid in fat burning and flushing out extra fat from the body.

Minerals and oils inside garlic help break down fat and increase the metabolism significantly.

Garlic - 30+ Foods That Burn Calories

If you include garlic in your everyday meals, you will also benefit from its ability to lower cholesterol and increase the amount of urine that flushes waste out of the body.


Cold water

According to some studies, drinking almost eight cups of water (2 liters) may help burn nearly 100 extra calories.

Drinking water will also help us not confusing thirst with hunger.

When it comes to cold water one can burn 200 to 500 calories. When we drink cold water our body is trying to heat the water back up to our normal body temperature, thus goes into overdrive and burn more calories.



Celery is low in calories and high in water content. It is among one of the best fat burning food because it makes our body works harder to digest it.

Whether you eat it alone, in salads or as a tasty filler, it is an important addition to your diet.



Ginger is known as a food that has excellent benefits for health in general.

One of the reasons ginger is beneficial in losing weight is that it improves digestion and boosts blood flow, thus improve circulation. It increases metabolism and it is one of those foods you need to include in your diet.



Pumpkin and pumpkin seeds are excellent sources of fiber and the antioxidant beta-carotene.

pumpkin - 30+ Foods That Burn Calories

Fiber is necessary for proper digestion, while beta-carotene fights oxidative stress and inflammation in the body that is associated with increased fat storage.

One cup of pumpkin seeds has only 46 calories and 3 grams of fiber. Introducing this healthy food into your diet is good.



Although a type of sugar, honey is the healthiest replacement for regular refined sugar. However, it contains necessary minerals and nutrients which makes it more than just a sugar replacement.

Honey mobilizes extra fat in the body. Drinking a mixture of honey, lemon and boiled water on an empty stomach early in the morning is a great way to detoxify the body and boost your metabolism.

If you consume honey after a meal, it will help with proper digestion and keep you full for longer.


This list offers you an insight into food that can effectively burn fat and help you lose weight in a healthy way.  Although you should think of including these foods into your diets, you do need to activate your body more and engage in exercising as well.

We also need to eat a variety of food to get the nutrients we need (our body needs a combination of protein, fat and carbohydrates), so do not think that fat burning food can alone satisfy your body and organism.

Healthy nutrition, especially when you wish to lose weight, includes healthy food rich in essential nutrients we need.

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Last article update: 6/18/2019