7 top fitness foods

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Whether you’re trying to slim down or shape up, these seven fitness foods can help you achieve your goals
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Chocolate milk

Move over, Gatorade-chocolate milk is being touted as the best fitness drink, thanks to its ability to help repair muscles, post-workout. Great news for chocoholics! “It basically has the same package of bone-building nutrients that white milk does,” says Zannat Reza, a registered dietitian based in Toronto.

Yes, chocolate milk is sweet, but its sugar content is comparable to apple juice-and it’s a much healthier choice. “You’re going to get 16 nutrients from the chocolate milk and you might be getting two from the apple juice,” Reza notes. Choose a one-percent brand for a low-fat, nutritious treat.

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Almonds

Looking for a healthy snack with satisfying crunch? Grab a handful of almonds. Considered the most nutrient-packed tree nut, almonds are an excellent source of vitamin E and a good source of protein and fibre. They’ve also been shown to reduce bad cholesterol, and researchers have found that they can even help in weight management.

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Beans and legumes

A study in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition found that people who eat beans had a 22 percent lower risk of obesity and were more likely to have a smaller waist than people who didn’t eat beans. Beans are high in soluble fibre, which slows digestion and makes you feel full longer.

eggs

Eggs

Did you know that eating eggs can help you lose weight? This might come as a surprise to those who think of eggs as “fattening” or “unhealthy”-but a study carried out by the Rochester Center for Obesity Research found that eating eggs for breakfast helps limit your calorie intake all day, by more than 400 calories. That means you could lose three pounds or more per month.

avocados

Avocado

Half an avocado contains 3.4 grams of fibre, including soluble and insoluble, both of which your body needs to keep the digestive system running smoothly. Plus, soluble fibre slows the breakdown of carbohydrates in your body, helping you feel full for longer.

Avocados also contain oleic acid, a fat that activates the part of your brain that makes you feel full. Healthier unsaturated fats containing oleic acid have been shown to produce a greater feeling of satiety than less-healthy saturated fats and trans fats found in processed foods

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Peanut butter

“I always eat peanut butter at breakfast, especially if I’m going to a long meeting. It gives me staying power,” says dietitian Sue Mah. It has protein, folate and vitamin E as well as zero trans fats. Instead, it contains the good fats: mono- and polyunsaturated. You may also want to give almond butter a try.

Best Health reader, Yolande Moreau, offers this tip: “My favourite and most effective pre-run snack is a peanut butter and banana torpedo: a tortilla smothered with peanut butter rolled around a banana. It’s easy to prepare in the morning, very packable and oh so yummy and fulfilling!”

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Whole grains

Filling fibre in whole grains like oatmeal, brown rice and whole-wheat bread is not only linked to lower weights, it can also reduce belly fat and blood-vessel inflammation that boosts the risk of heart disease, according to a 2008 Pennsylvania State University study.

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