Spinach is one of the best foods for weight loss. It regulates appetite and reduces cravings for fattening foods with only a few calories, while it’s packed with nutrients that burn belly fat. Spinach is rich in:
- vitamins C, E, K, and folate
Spinach is good for weight loss, as it has a few calories
Above all, spinach is good for weight loss because it’s pretty low in calories. Raw spinach has only 23 calories per 100g. Spinach and other greens are the best foods for eating on a hypocaloric diet for weight loos. In fact, you can eat as much spinach as you want, without gaining weight!
Protein in spinach promotes weight loss
Furthermore, spinach is particularly high in protein. Actually, 50% of calories of spinach come from protein!
High-protein meals are good for weight loss. In fact, high-protein intake has been linked to reduced body weight, and decreased fat mass! You better increase your protein intake when following a low-calorie diet for weight loss. Protein is crucial for preserving the valuable lean body mass, which controls resting energy expenditure.
Moreover, 30% of protein is lost during digestion. Protein has the highest thermic effect, as compared to carbs (5-10%) or fat (only 3%).
Spinach reduces hunger & cravings!
Additionally, spinach is good for weight loss because it has a high satiating effect, due to its high fiber, protein, and water content! Foods high in water, fiber, and protein have the highest filling effect. These foods reduce appetite, making dieting easy.
First, spinach is an excellent dietary source of fiber. High-fiber diets improve body composition and promote a healthy weight. Unfortunately, most people don’t consume adequate amounts of fiber, increasing the risk of obesity, as well as other diseases.
Moreover, spinach is 91% water! Therefore, you should prefer eating spinach raw in salads, sandwiches, or smoothies.
Moreover, spinach has a pretty high satiating effect because it’s an excellent source of thylakoids. Thylakoids are the internal photosynthetic membrane system of green plants.
They significantly reduce appetite because they increase release of the satiety hormones GLP-1, cholecystokinin, and leptin, which play a key role in the reward signaling of the body. Furthermore, thylakoids reduce the secretion of insulin and the hunger-stimulating hormone ghrelin.[5,6]
Most noteworthy, eating foods high in thylakoids, such as spinach, reduces cravings for sweet or fatty snacks by up to 38%! As spinach is among the richest foods in thylakoids, we should consume it regularly to prevent overeating, night cravings, and emotional eating.
Iron in spinach is vital for burning belly fat
Additionally, spinach is particularly rich in iron. Raw spinach contains 2.7 mg of iron per 100g. This dose is 15% of the Daily Value.
Actually, iron deficiency is pretty common. Especially among obese people and women. It can cause metabolic disorders, leading to fatigue, inactivity, inflammation, and eventually to obesity! Treating iron deficiency can reduce body weight and waist circumference.[7,8]
Kale is another common vegetable with a pretty high iron content.
Potassium in spinach for weight loss
Furthermore, eating spinach is good for weight loss because it’s an excellent dietary source of potassium. Raw spinach contains 558 mg of potassium per 100g, or 16% of the DV. A diet high in potassium enhances weight loss, lowers Body Mass Index (BMI), and significantly lowers the risk of obesity.
Spinach promotes weight loss due to its high calcium content
Calcium is vital for muscle function, nerve transmission, and hormonal secretion! Adequate calcium intake is necessary for a normal body weight and less weight gain over time! It helps the body burn belly fat for energy, and also prevents the absorption of fat from the body.
Spinach contains decent amounts of calcium. Raw spinach has about 100 mg of calcium per 100g, or about 10% of the DV. Actually, there are many plant-based foods high in calcium. Cow’s milk and dairy aren’t the only good dietary sources.
Vitamin C burns belly fat
Spinach is an excellent dietary source of vitamin C as well. Raw spinach has 28 mg of vitamin C per 100g, or 30% of the DV. Vitamin C is necessary for weight loss, as it helps the body burn more fat for energy. Only certain plant-based foods are high in vitamin C.
Carotenoids in spinach for weight loss!
Eating lots of foods containing carotenoids and other antioxidants is beneficial for health and weight loss.
First, obese people tend to have lower blood concentrations of carotenoids.
Secondly, carotenoids protect us from oxidative stress, which is a common cause of obesity! Overweight people have higher risk of developing oxidative stress.
Spinach is an excellent source of carotenoids. It contains 5,630 mcg of beta-carotene, 12,200 mcg of lutein and zeaxanthin per 100g! Carotenoids are metabolized to vitamin A by the body. Vitamin A plays a key role in burning belly fat for energy!
In fact, spinach has an exceptional antioxidant content, providing potent anti-obesity effects on the body. It prevents the excess retention of fat in the body. Moreover, carotenoids in spinach can reduce total cholesterol, and triglycerides.[12,13]
Vitamin E in spinach fights obesity!
Additionally, spinach is good for weight loss because it’s one of the best dietary sources of vitamin E! It has 2 mg of vitamin E per 100g, or 13% of the DV!
Vitamin E has powerful anti-inflammatory and anti-obesity properties. It may improve insulin sensitivity, reduce oxidative stress, and inflammation!
The best dietary sources of vitamin E are seeds and nuts, such as sunflower seeds, almonds, pistachios, and hazelnuts! But, you shouldn’t consume too many seeds and nuts a day if you want to lose weight, due to their high calorie content. On the contrary, spinach is the only good low-calorie dietary source of vitamin E.
Vitamin K burns belly fat
Furthermore, spinach is particularly rich in vitamin K. Raw spinach contains 483 mcg of vitamin K per 100g, or 400% of the DV! Vitamin K plays a key role in fat and glucose metabolism. High vitamin K intakes may reduce body weight. Above all, it burns body fat, and especially belly fat!
Chlorophyll reduces cravings
Additionally, spinach is one of the richest foods in chlorophyll. Chlorophyll reduces the urge for fatty or sweet foods, which are pretty high in calories. Furthermore, chlorophyll can reduce body weight, body fat, and waist circumference!
Folate in spinach is necessary for losing weight
Is it OK to eat spinach every day?
Certainly, spinach is one of the best foods you can have for weight loss! It’s super nutrient-dense, containing only a few calories. But, people with a high risk of developing kidney stones should avoid eating it daily.
First, spinach contains high amounts of oxalates. Raw spinach contains 600-1,000 mg of oxalates per 100g! Most people consume no more than 300 mg of oxalates per day.
Oxalates bind to calcium, increasing the risk of kidney stones.
To reduce the risk of kidney stones, you should eat spinach with foods rich in calcium. Calcium binds to oxalate in the intestines. This significantly decreases the amount of oxalate that gets absorbed into the bloodstream, and then excreted by the kidneys. In this case, urine has less oxalate, lowering the risk of binding to urinary calcium. Therefore, milk and dairy can significantly reduce the availability of the oxalate in spinach.
Also, you should avoid eating raw spinach. You better boil, steam, or soak spinach in order to make oxalates leak into the water. Boiling reduces up to 87% of soluble oxalates!
Moreover, you should consult your healthcare provider before greatly increasing your spinach consumption, due to its particularly high vitamin K content. Too much vitamin K can interact with certain drugs, such as Warfarin and similar anticoagulants, increasing or decreasing their anticoagulant effect.
Certainly, the occasional consumption of high oxalate foods, as part of a healthy, nutritious diet, isn’t a problem.
Last, but not least, you should prefer buying organic spinach. Spinach is in the list of the most contaminated with pesticides foods.