A Look at Negative Calorie Foods

The number of calories that our diet consists of is a big deal for many people in current times as we become a nation of weight watchers! With calorie counting becoming something of a regular activity people are constantly on the lookout for any way possible in their diet to try and lose weight.

Low calorie foods are great but what about negative calorie foods? You may or may not be aware that there really is such a thing as a negative calorie food and this page will explain to you exactly what negative calorie foods are and also provide you with a list of them.

You may have though that foods with negative calories are a myth, but that is genuinely not the case and here is where you will find out why!

What are negative calorie foods, is there such a thing?

Explaining the negative calorie foods myth

So is there such a thing as negative calorie foods? We are going to start of by explaining exactly what this term means, before we go on to provide you with a list of negative calorie foods. Many people will have heard of what is known as the 'negative calorie foods myth' and think that it is too good to be true, that there simply cannot be anything out there that contains a minus figure when it comes to a calorific value.

Of course this is true, no food can have a negative amount of calories outright. That would just be impossible and if it were real then the whole world would know about it as that is certainly something that people would not be able to keep a secret. It is also the case that there is no such thing as a zero calorie food, in fact nothing is calorie free in life except water!

However, a food that has a calorific balance in the minus, is not necessarily the only thing that can be referred to as a 'negative calorie food'.

What negative calorie foods are believed to be is in actual fact something that if consumed into the body either raw, or in a few instances slightly cooked on their own with nothing added to them, would use more calories to process and digest, than the amount of calories that they contain.

There are many foods that are known as metabolism boosting foods and these items will burn calories when they are consumed because the body is forced to work that extra little bit harder to process, digest and actually extract the calories from them. In the case of negative calorie foods the concept is the same but these already have a very low calorific value, so the number required for the body to burn will turn the total into a negative figure, pretty amazing huh?

Foods that have am overall negative calorie value generally contain vitamins and minerals that will produce enzymes that are able to break down the food's own calories, and also further calories from the body in digestion too. This useful effect is referred to as 'the negative calorie effect'.

A basic example of how foods negative in calories are believed to work, compared to a regular piece of food:

  • Food A contains 50 calories - The body will have to burn 100 calories in order to process and digest food A - 50 calories minus 100 calories gives a total of minus 50 calories so food A is therefore a negative calorie food
  • Food B contains 300 calories - The body will require 100 calories in order to process and digest food B - 300 minus 100 still leaves a high amount of calories absorbed into the body that will need to be burned in another way so food B is a positive calorie food

By eating a regular amount of negative calorie foods, you are giving yourself a helping hand in losing weight and burning off any excess calories that you may consume in your overall total.

Although the whole concept here is one that can benefit you, it is important to remember that this is not going to be something that loses you a large amount of weight. It is a helping hand as opposed to a full blown solution. There are many people that believe that negative calorie foods are in fact a myth, and further down the page we will cover some of the reasons as to why these people think that the effect that we have just explained is as profound as it sounds.

Negative calorie food list

Now that we have explained what negative calorie foods are it is time to move on to what most people will be visiting this page for, a list full of examples.

As you will see there is nothing but fruit and vegetables in the list. It may come to a surprise to you but not only are these some of the lowest calorie foods that are available for you to consume but they are also natural and full of many other healthy vitamins and minerals that are fantastic for the body.

Negative calorie fruits

Berries stand out amongst the negative calorie fruits as they contain decent amounts of protein. Protein is something that is valuable in dieting, and is something that people often do not recognise that they need. They instead prefer to sacrifice heavier foods in favor of those that are generally empty of any nutritional value. Many berries taste great on their own, and can easily be added to other foods. They are rich in antioxidants, Vitamin C and a wide range of other nutrients that boost the efficiency of your immune system.

Cranberries and blueberries help flush out your system and keep you regular. Blueberries are also known, along with raspberries, to aid your eyesight. All these factors combined with a very low calorie count make berries a highly valuable negative calorie food, by low calorie count they are on average under 50 calories per cupful.

Negative calorie vegetables

  • Asparagus
  • Beet Root
  • Broccoli
  • Cabbage (green)
  • Carrot
  • Cauliflower
  • Celery
  • Chile peppers (hot)
  • Cucumber
  • Dandelion
  • Endive
  • Garden cress
  • Garlic
  • Green beans
  • Lettuce
  • Onion
  • Radishes
  • Spinach
  • Turnip
  • Zucchini

Negativity Calorie Foods Myth

These foods do get a lot of adverse publicity and is often regarded as a 'negative calories foods myth'. The main reason for this is that many people believe that the amount of calories that the body will use to process and digest a food is rather small. For instance something that requires a lot of effort to chew, and that is already very low in calories may be regarded as a negative calorie food, however if the body really does not use up many calories for this then is the effect something that is really worth taking into consideration?

This is not helped by people thinking that by eating nothing but foods found on the above list, that they will start to just drop weight. They believe that they are never going to add calories because the negative numbers are going to take care of a lot of those taken in from other sources. This is not the case. It is only going to make a slight difference at best, and that is more of a common sense view than a sceptical approach.

Whether you have faith in negative calorie foods or not, the items that are found on the list we have featured here will provide your body with a whole range of nutritional benefits. They are foods that are encouraged in almost every diet that you will ever come across.

By consuming them you are going to be going some way to increasing your metabolism and taking on much needed protein that helps the maintenance and growth of the cells in your body.

More information

Thank you for reading our page and we hope that we have gone some way to explaining the negative calorie foods myth and given you some valuable ideas with our negative calorie food list. There is a lot more to this site than an explanation as to what negative calorie foods are so please take a look around.

You can find out all about the calories and nutrients that your diet contains via the food menus on the left hand side of the page.

Disclaimer: The text on calories in foods.com is for your information only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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