Posted on Aug 05, 2009, 12 p.m.
There's something that grapefruit juice, green tea, chili peppers, cinnamon and coconut oil all have in common: studies show that consuming these items can help us burn fat.
Burning fat can be as simple as drinking a glass of grapefruit every morning. Recent research conducted by the University of Western Ontario in Canada has identified that naringenin, a flavonoid in grapefruit, actually performs double-duty as a fat-burning molecule that helps balance out blood sugar levels and helps prevent metabolic syndrome. This pre-diabetic condition is associated with weight gain around the middle. As the scientists discovered, it works by programming the liver to burn up excess fat, rather than storing it. A study conducted by the University of California proves this is the case: obese people who drank a glass before every meal lost between 3.5 and 10 pounds over a three-month period.
Another beverage has been found to be beneficial to dieters: green tea. Research reported in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reports that green tea can accelerate our bodies' ability to burn cellular energy by up to 40 percent. Researchers believe this is due to the combination of caffeine and flavonoids found in both hot and cold tea.
In another study conducted by Scandinavian researchers, the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition also reports that participants given rice pudding with three grams of cinnamon produced less insulin after a meal. With less insulin, which turns excess sugar into fat, there's less weight gain. Another spice, chili pepper, speeds up metabolism and heat production due to the heat-producing molecule capsaicin. Eating chiles gives our cells a fat-burning boost -- up to 25 percent, in fact. Maastricht University conducted trials that showed eating chili peppers suppresses hunger and prolongs the feeling of fullness, reducing appetite.
And finally, Cherie Calbom, who wrote The Coconut Diet, reports that replacing cooking oil with coconut oil can help us lose weight. Why? Coconut fat yields just 6.8 calories per gram versus 9.0 calories as with most fats. And those calories actually act more like carbohydrates, being burned by the liver to generate immediate energy. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition agrees: The body digests coconut oil more easily that other types of fats and is quickly converted into a source of energy.
News Release: Why green tea and grapefruit juice will help you burn fat www.dailymail.co.uk