20 Best Natural Appetite Suppressants
Are you currently trying to lose weight for summer bikini season, hoping to fit into your dream wedding dress by the big day, or simply wanting to feel healthier and less tired? Natural appetite suppressants can help prevent you from overeating by keeping you feeling fuller for longer. Ditch the slimming potions and strict dieting regimes, and try these natural and tasty appetite suppressants instead.
Most of these natural appetite suppressants have a low glycaemic index (low GI), which means that they release constant energy slowly over the day, instead of giving you an instant energy boost that crashes quickly and causes you to eat more. Adding them to your healthy diet and regular exercise regime will give great results!
Raw almonds are a fantastic healthy snack, as they are a rich source of antioxidants, protein, magnesium, and vitamin E. They are also full of fibre and are low GI, keeping your energy levels stable and making you feel fuller for longer. A handful of almonds (4-5 nuts) about 30 minutes before a meal can reduce your appetite, making you eat less and helping you to feel satisfied with less food.
In addition to waking you up every morning, a cup or two of coffee a day can help control overeating. The caffeine is a great appetite suppressant, and coffee is also full of antioxidants. Limit your intake to two cups a day to prevent the caffeine jitters, and try to take your coffee black and sugarless for best results. Adding sugar, full fat milk, and cream will only cancel out the benefits of the coffee! If you can’t stomach strong black coffee, add a tiny bit of soya milk or skimmed milk to taste.
An ancient remedy for all kinds of digestive ailments, ginger is a fantastic appetite suppressant. It also helps to speed up your metabolism, and you can get your daily dose in one of many forms: try ginger tea, a kiwi fruit, ginger, and banana smoothie for breakfast, a spicy Asian dish containing ginger, or even fruit juice with a bit of ginger in it.
Whether crisp and sour or sweet and crunchy, apples are great for busting hunger and keeping you healthy. Not only are they packed full of soluble fibre, which keeps you feeling full, but apples also contain pectin, which helps to regulate appetite. Apples are low GI and help to regulate your blood sugar, which means no more feeling dizzy (and feeling starving!) in-between meals. Apples also require lots of chewing, which gives your stomach time to tell your brain that you’re getting full.
Creamy and delicious, avocadoes are packed full of healthy monounsaturated fats that make you feel fuller for longer. They are also excellent for your heart, as they contain good cholesterol and they help to break down bad cholesterol. You can add them to salads, eat them mashed on toast with a bit of lemon and black pepper, or eat them straight out of the skin! Just cut your avocado in half, remove the pip, cut a few lines into the flesh of one half, and season with lemon and salt. Then scoop the fruit out with a small fork or spoon – delicious!
6. Cayenne pepper
Add some spice to your life to speed up your metabolism and reduce calorie intake! Cayenne pepper helps you to burn calories, and eating spicy meals with this ingredient can reduce your overall calorie intake. If you don’t usually eat spicy food, start small and try a mild curry or spicy rice once or twice a week.
Start the day with a hearty egg breakfast to banish mid-morning hunger! Scrambled eggs on whole-wheat toast can keep you feeling full and satisfied until lunch, so try to get eggs onto your breakfast menu to help control your appetite. As well as being full of protein, eggs are a great choice over sugary breakfast cereals that cause blood sugar to rise rapidly and then crash mid-morning.
Drinking a glass or two of water before a meal can slightly decrease your appetite, causing you to eat less and thereby reduce your calorie intake. We all have different needs when it comes to water intake (8 glasses a day is not suitable for everyone!), so see what works for you by slowly increasing the amount of water you drink every day. Thirst can also sometimes get confused with hunger in your brain, so when you feel peckish in between meals, try a large glass of water first before snacking.
It may sound boring, but oatmeal is a fantastic breakfast food for slow-release energy (oats are low GI) and keeping you fuller for longer. Oatmeal also contains the appetite-regulating hormone cholecystokinin, which can curb hunger in some people. Eat oatmeal for breakfast and add appetite-curbing toppings for a super-satisfying meal – try chopped raw almonds, grated apple, and blueberries for a tasty and healthy start to your day.
10. Sweet potatoes
A delicious alternative to normal potatoes, sweet potatoes are great appetite suppressants due to the presence of a special kind of starch that resists digestive enzymes. This means that the potatoes stay in your stomach for longer, keeping you feeling fuller and decreasing hunger. They also contain beta-carotene (vitamin A) and vitamin C, which makes them especially healthy! You can make sweet potato chips or wedges, or roast them and enjoy them with a sour cream sauce and a salad.
Mint is great for digestion, and the smell is very uplifting for your mood. It’s also a good appetite suppressant, keeping hunger at bay. Have a cup of mint tea after meals, and add mint to dishes when you cook. Fresh mint is also great to chew on to freshen breath after a garlicky meal! You can even grow your own mint as a houseplant in your kitchen. Keep it in a sunny place, and water it regularly for fresh mint leaves whenever you fancy them!
12. Vegetable broth
Low in calories and high in antioxidants and fiber, vegetable broth is filling and light, making you feel satisfied instead of bloated or heavy. Have it as a starter to avoid overeating during mains, or have a big bowl as your main course! For your main, you can make a slightly heavier soup with more veggies and less broth. Add some fresh, buttered bread for a delightful low-calorie feast.
13. Kale and other leafy greens
Packed full of fiber, iron, and vitamins, green leafy vegetables are excellent appetite suppressants. Kale, Swiss Chard, and spinach are all hunger-busting super-foods you can add to your diet quite easily. Swap watery and tasteless iceberg lettuce for fresh and flavorful baby spinach in salads, use lightly sauteed spinach and feta as a breakfast omelette filler, or make kale chips for a healthy snack.
14. Edamame beans
Edamame beans (baby soy beans served in the pod) are one of the best low-calorie, filling snacks out there. You can steam them to make them tender, and have them as a snack before dinner or in between meals. You don’t eat the skin – simply pop the beans out of their shells and eat them! You can also order edamame at Asian restaurants as a starter to moderate your main course intake, as they will fill you up and help to keep you feeling fuller for longer.
15. Dark chocolate
Eating healthy doesn’t have to mean cutting out your favorite foods! If you love chocolate but find yourself often overindulging, try substituting milk chocolate for dark chocolate with at least 70% cocoa solids. The bitter dark chocolate taste sends signals to your brain to curb your appetite, and you only need one or two blocks to satisfy the craving. Dark chocolate also contains steric acid, which slows digestion and keeps you feeling fuller for longer. A little bit after dinner makes for a great healthy dessert!
16. Flax seeds
There’s a lot of nutritional power packed into each of these tiny seeds – soluble fiber, omega 3 fatty acids, antioxidants, and vitamin B. The fiber and essential fatty acids help to suppress appetite and keep you feeling fuller for longer. Add the raw seeds to your oatmeal, your muesli with yogurt and fruit, or add them to your salads, smoothies, and baking recipes.
17. Chia seeds
These strange little seeds are full of omega 3 fatty acids, protein, and fiber, making them great for beating hunger. Some claim that they swell in your stomach, causing you to feel full, but this hasn’t been proven. They do absorb liquid though, so you can soak them in water or milk (even soy milk or almond milk) overnight and then enjoy them for breakfast with some fruit and nuts. Chia pudding is also a delicious healthy dessert!
18. Vegetable juice
As well as increasing your daily intake of vegetables, veggie juice can be a filling snack in between meals. You just need a blender to make your own veggie juice at home! Try kale, green apple and cucumber, or a tomato based veggie juice for a vitamin C boost. If you’re buying your veggie juice, choose low sodium options to prevent bloating and high blood pressure.
Tofu is a bean-curd product made from soy milk, and you can buy it in small firm blocks. In addition to being an incredibly versatile source of plant-based protein for vegetarians, tofu is a fantastic appetite suppressant. Tofu contains high amounts of genistein, an isoflavone (hormone influencing compound) that suppresses appetite and lowers food intake.
Salmon is a great lean meat, as it’s full of protein and omega 3 & 6 fatty acids. These fatty acids help your body to regulate the hormone leptin, which controls hunger and satiety. Try scrambled eggs on wholewheat toast with some smoked salmon for a delicious and fulfilling breakfast. Tuna and herring are equally beneficial, so you can add some variety to your meals.