What you eat is just as critical as how much you eat. When it comes to losing body fat, not all calories are created equal. The calories that should really be getting your attention are those that are nutrient-dense; these will provide your body with the energy it needs and allow it to burn energy from fat stores. Nutritionally sparse food on the other hand can cause the body to store extra energy from food as fat.
Plus, as amazing as it may seem, it is possible to boost your metabolism and get some extra help with-fat burning with certain foods and spices. Nature really is like a living library, you just need to know how to read it!
Cacao, or pure raw chocolate, is one of the best foods you can eat to raise your metabolism. Cacao contains over 200 chemicals like theobromine and anandamide that act like fuel for the brain and body. It has been proven to beat depression, anemia, low energy, a lagging metabolism, and inability to focus. Raw cacao is a great source of magnesium which helps our metabolism by reducing the negative impact of stress on our bodies. Magnesium is a muscle relaxant, plus it keeps our cortisol levels in check and our digestive system working great. Together, these nutrients stimulate the body internally to get your engines ready for more metabolic burn.
You can enjoy raw cacao in bars, in powder form or as nibs:
- Cacao bars – taste like chocolate without the guilt.
- Shakes – great to get you going in the morning.
- Cacao paste – use it to make your own chocolate in 3 easy steps.
- Organic chocolate – need we say more – yum!
Almond nuts are excellent for your metabolism for a few reasons. First, the nutrients in all nuts and seeds raise your metabolism naturally and are great for your thyroid. Secondly, the fats in almonds help promote a reduced waistline, because they are monounsaturated fats, which help to burn body fat, especially in the abdominal area. Almonds also contain fibre, which increases your metabolism, just through better digestion. Lastly, almonds contain vital antioxidants and amino acids from protein that increase metabolic burn.
Enjoy almonds in these delicious forms:
- Almond milk – a fantastic alternative not only for vegans
- The original almond nuts – add some blueberries for a great immune-boosting snack
- Almond flour – a tasty gluten-free alternative
Coconut primarily consists of medium-chain fatty acids (MCAs). These triglycerides can speed up the metabolism because they are so easily digested and converted into energy. Coconut is also one of the best foods you can eat for your thyroid gland, since it stimulates thyroid function, contains almost no sugar and is very low in carbohydrates. Plus coconut has the most amazing immune-boosting abilities of any food on Earth – you can eat it raw, drink it or cook with it!
- Coconut oil – a great alternative to seed-derived cooking oils; and the fact that it’s our number one top seller says it all.
- Coconut Milk – no curry is the same without it.
- Coconut water – free of fat and cholesterol, it’s so hydrating and a great alternative to fizzy drinks.
- Coconut flour – for some delicious gluten-free baking.
- Desiccated Coconut – fantastic to add to smoothies and trail mix.
Chia seeds are another fabulous source of omega-3 fats, with plenty of fibre to boot! This raises your metabolism by burning fat, and the amino acids in chia seeds are also excellent for raising your metabolism. Chia seeds help to keep you fuller longer, which stabilises your mood and blood sugar, and aids in energy levels. You can add them to anything, and just 1 tablespoon is the perfect amount for most people.
Try out these chia products:
Rich in gingerols and capsaicin, two metabolic boosting compounds, ginger can increase your metabolism by about 20% for up to 3 hours after consumption.
These are our favorite ways to increase your intake of ginger:
- Organic Ginger Powder – great to add to soups and smoothies.
- Miso & Ginger Soup – the healthiest soup around.
- Ginger & Green Tea Mix – a great winter drink given that green tea is also a metabolic booster.
- Wild Ginger Wholefood Supplement – can be taken twice daily and helps with a range of other ailments.
Oatmeal is a great source of fat-soluble fibre that fills you up quickly, gives you lots of energy that won’t be easily stored; it also lowers cholesterol and is high in nutrients.
- Easy Cooking Oats – given how full it can make you feel, oatmeal for breakfast is a marvelous idea.
- Scottish Oatcakes – gluten-free, sugar-free and simply delicious, these are a very smart snack.
- Organic Oat Bran – can be added to smoothies or used to make delicious muffins, porridge or pizza dough.
Cinnamon boosts your metabolism, aids in digestion, and regulates blood sugar levels for people with type 2 diabetes. Plus it’s just the most delicious addition to breakfast dishes and hot drinks.
These are our favourite sources of organic cinnamon:
- Organic cinnamon powder – a must-have to sprinkle over your metabolism-boosting oats.
- Pukka Revitalise Tea with Cinnamon – this is an energising and warming blend of cinnamon, cardamon and ginger to get you going.
- Whole cinnamon sticks – South Africa’s wonderful array of traditional Cape Malay dishes just wouldn’t be the same without cinnamon.
Studies show that green tea boosts metabolism, has great antioxidants and may help prevent some forms of cancer. It’s also famous for being a mood enhancer, great for staying upbeat when the craving blues come to visit.
Some of our top-selling green tea options are:
- Original Chinese Green tea – for those that like to keep it simple.
- Green Tea Kombucha – a powerful drink as kombucha is also a metabolic booster.
- Green Tea & Panax Ginseng – this organic tea contains energy-boosting Panax Ginseng root, blended with warming spices of the East; cinnamon, cloves and hibiscus. Ginseng is ideal for relieving fatigue and improving energy levels, enhancing mental and physical stamina and giving your body an all-over health boost.
Spicy cayenne pepper is a staple of Ayurvedic medicine that’s known to kick up your body’s temperature and boost your metabolism. An added bonus is that the capsaicin content in cayenne helps your brain release endorphins; happy days!
- Cayenne pepper – this is a warming, peppery spice that adds a bit of heat to your favourite sauces and stews. Also good to know: Gargling with a cayenne pepper solution (1tsp cayenne in a glass of warm water) will help to clear up a sore throat in minutes.
There are a myriad purported health benefits of kombucha, from improved digestion and metabolism to boosted immunity, healthier skin and hair, and liver detoxification. This fermented drink is one acquired taste that you cannot go wrong with.
We have 2 great kombucha brands:
- Theonista – All delicious Theonista products are gluten-free and dairy-free, locally made with pride and plenty of love. Whether you’re choosing Rooibos & Pomegranate or Ginger & Rooibos, Theonista is known for great-tasting kombucha.
- Kwenchi – Produced in a controlled environment, Kwenchi kombucha is wonderfully pure, unpreserved and unpasteurised, and packed with beneficial probiotics and nutrients. Kwenchi kombucha is made using pure filtered water, black tea, cane sugar and living cultures, cured in bespoke oak containers to create a naturally fermented energy and metabolism booster. This is the perfect alternative to chemical-laden commercial energy drinks – in fact natural Kwenchi kombucha gives you the option to enjoy “more wings, less bull”. Comes in Ginger and Buchu flavours too!