Nutrition & Weight Loss

6 Weight Loss Power Vegetables

6 Weight Loss Power Vegetables

By Vanessa Runs

Many of us think of celery as a great weight loss food because we know that our bodies burn more calories to break it down than what the food itself provides. When we eat celery, we are actually burning more calories than what we are consuming. But celery is not the only vegetable with that property.

The following six vegetables not only burn more calories in their digestion than what they contain, but they are also very satiating. They help keep us feeling full for a longer period of time, and introduce the vitamins and minerals our bodies need to function optimally, perform athletically, and lose weight.

1. Alfalfa sprouts

I love alfalfa sprouts because they can easily be added to any sandwich or salad or even soup. You can also grow them at home, which is cheaper, more convenient, and they harvest in only seven days.

These sprouts contain an impressive amount of nutrients that include calcium, folic acid, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, and zinc. They also include a full range of vitamins A, B complex (even B12), C, E and K, and can be a source of chlorophyll.

Alfalfa sprouts reduce inflammation, which make them helpful for people with arthritis or any other inflammatory disease. They also help lower blood pressure and boost the immune system by increasing the activity of our natural killer cells.

2. Watercress

Watercress adds a burst of freshness and flavor to any dish. I like to add it to my eggs and salads. Watercress has many disease-prevention properties, particularly for Alzheimer’s and osteoporosis. This is because of its high calcium and vitamin K content, which is important for bone formation and strengthening, as well as limiting neurological damage in the brain.

Watercress is also high in beta carotene and vitamin C, making it a powerful antioxidant and important for immune system support while the potassium in watercress works to control heart rate and blood pressure by reducing the effects of sodium in our diet.

3. Cucumbers

Who doesn’t like cucumbers? This popular vegetable is most commonly used in salads, but I like eating them raw with some lime juice. Cucumbers are amazing for skin health. You’ve probably seen them covering people’s eyes at a spa during a facial treatment. This is because they help relieve puffiness and darkness around the eyes. In addition, they help soothe skin irritations and reduce swelling, while providing the hydration needed for bright and glowing skin.

Cucumbers are also a great source of silica, which is a mineral used to strengthen the connective tissue that makes up our skin. Other nutrients include vitamins A, C, folic acid, magnesium, and potassium. They are also high in fiber, which further supports weight loss and intestinal health.

4. Bok Choy

I use bok choy in any stir fry or sometimes I just eat it raw. This vegetable has been associated with cancer prevention, particularly lung, colon, prostate and endometrial cancers. This is because it contains compounds called glucosinolates, which help fight cancer.

Bok choy is also high in carotenoids, which support our eye health by preventing cataracts and age-related muscular degeneration. Its potassium content lowers high blood pressure and its low glycemic index helps treat and prevent diabetes.

5. Turnip Greens

Steaming is the best way to preserve nutrition and enjoy the flavor from these vegetables. Turnip greens strongly support our cardiovascular system, protecting against heart attack, heart disease, and atherosclerosis. They are an excellent source of folate, which plays a key role in cardiovascular health.

Turnip greens lower cholesterol and have an anti-inflammatory effect in addition to being strong antioxidants, lowering the risk of oxidative stress in our cells and aiding in detoxification.

6. Spinach

Popeye had this one right. Not only does spinach help strengthen our muscles, it also helps our eyesight, stabilizes our blood pressure, protects our skin, and benefits our neurological health. The nutrients in spinach include potassium, manganese, zinc, magnesium, iron, and calcium. It tastes great either raw or cooked.

The vitamin K content in spinach is essential to bone health because it prevents excessive activation of osteoclasts (cells that break down bone).

And the best part about using these vegetables for weight loss is that they can taste great.

Happy eating!

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This post was written by:

- who has written 8 posts on Trail Running Club.

Vanessa is an ultra endurance trail runner, freelance writer, and Registered Holistic Nutritionist. She writes for Ultra Running Magazine, Trail Running Magazine, and, among other publications.

Vanessa loves the challenge of racing 100-milers and exploring new trails with her dog Ginger. From May 2011 through May of 2012 Vanessa completed 14 ultra distance races as well as a Rim-to-Rim-to-Rim crossing of the Grand Canyon.

Read Vanessa's full bio and follow her ultra adventures at

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