According to a recent study from University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, certain fatty foods, like butter, send messages to the brain that actually tell the body to ignore appetite-suppressing signals from the two hormones -- leptin and insulin -- that are responsible for weight regulation. However, olive oil and grapeseed oil did just the opposite, allowing the "I'm satisfied" signal to do its job in the brain. Also, a separate study from the University of California, Irvine found that these good fats trigger production of a compound in the small intestine that curbs hunger pangs. "You can banish the butter and switch over to olive oil for everything from cooking to baking," advised Sass
A team of researchers at Johns Hopkins Weight Management Center discovered that study participants who ate meat-filled lunch entrees over the course of four days consumed 420 additional calories and 30 more fat grams per day than those who chose a mushroom-based meal. "Not only does this swap help you get in more veggies and slash calories without feeling hungrier, it also ups your intake of one of the key nutrients tied to weight control -- Vitamin D," said Cynthia Sass, R.D., co-author of "The Ultimate Diet Log." "In fact, trading three ounces of 90 percent lean ground turkey for a half-cup of chopped Portabella mushroom once a week, without making any other changes, would save you 7,280 calories a year."
According to a clinical trial conducted at the Canadian Center of Functional Medicine, all of the volunteers who ate a soluble fiber, like oatmeal (whole grain, not instant), reported a drop in appetite, as well as experienced weight loss. "Oatmeal is high in both soluble and insoluble fiber, so you'll be less inclined to be munching throughout the day," Brooking said. For a double-punch effect, she also suggested adding a soluble fiber fruit, like sliced apple, to this warm breakfast treat.
Swedish researchers have discovered that eating rye bread increases the feeling of being full and can lead to a lower-calorie intake throughout the day -- even up to eight hours -- compared to eating whole wheat bread. The study, published in "Nutrition Journal," also concluded that those who ate rye bread also had a lower insulin response. "Rye has a high level of fiber in two parts of the grain -- the bran or outer coating and the endosperm, the portion surrounding the seed that supplies it with nutrients," said Sass.
Research from the Faculty of Life Sciences at the University of Copenhagen found that dark chocolate offers more of a feeling of satiety than milk chocolate. "If registered dietitians had prescription pads, I'd be doling out regular doses of dark chocolate to all my clients," said Sass. "Not only is it loaded with antioxidants and natural substances that protect your heart, boost circulation and lower blood sugar, but research shows it can also help you feel more satisfied." Her advice is to melt a few pieces of dark chocolate squares and use as a dip for fresh fruit. "You'll save 200 calories compared to eating four chocolate dipped pretzels."