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Best foods for weight loss: Nutritionist recommends 3 superfoods

Ready to start eat healthier this year? Start here!
/ Source: TODAY

While there's no formal definition for the word "superfood," when a specific food is loaded with nutrients and nourishes the body in a way that can benefit health, I believe it certainly deserves superfood status! And since so many folks have been asking me how they can shed a few pounds in the new year, today I’m featuring three “superfoods” that can specifically help support weight-loss efforts.

1. Artichokes

Why it promotes weight loss: They’re low-calorie and high fiber (1 cup has about 70 calories and 9 grams of fiber) and provide a meaty and substantial bite, so they can help keep you feeling full and satisfied. They’re also considered prebiotics, which feed probiotics and help to create a gut filled with good bacteria. And quite a few studies suggest a healthy gut promotes a healthy weight and can aid with weight management.

Try my artichoke salsa!

2. Vinegar

Why it promotes weight loss: This potent flavor enhancer adds zing to meals for minimal calories. Each tablespoon is less than 15 calories, which is a great deal when you consider a tablespoon of salad dressing is about 80 calories. Also, some research suggests that when you incorporate vinegar into meals that include carbohydrates, the vinegar can help blunt the rise in your blood sugar. That’s because the acetic acid within vinegar helps to slightly slow down the absorption of carbs. And all vinegar varieties work — white, red wine, balsamic and apple cider.

Try these apple cider pickled cucumbers.

3. Shrimp

Why it promotes weight loss: At just 8 calories a pop, shrimp is one of the skinniest protein-packed foods on the menu. In fact you can enjoy about 12 medium shrimp for under 100 calories. Pretty impressive. Here's another perk: While eating any food will slightly raise your metabolic rate since digestion actually burns calories, protein has the greatest effect — more so than carbs and fat. Thus, protein-packed shrimp can help your rev your system.

Cook up these skillet lime-cilantro shrimp to reap these benefits!

For healthy tips, follow Joy on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and check out her newest book “Joy’s Simple Food Remedies."​​