The One Food That Jumpstarts Weight Loss Without Having to Cut Calories

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Losing weight typically requires a strict calorie cut and uptick in exercise, but what if we told you that all it took was one simple change to improve your health and shed pounds? Well, according to a new study in the Annals of Internal Medicine, it might be true.

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Scientists from the University of Massachusetts Medical School conducted a study that analyzed 240 prediabetic people split into two groups, one assigned to follow the American Heart Association (AHA) diet, and one to simply eat more fiber. The AHA group—which followed a diet that’s currently recommended for those showing signs of prediabetes—concentrated on cutting calories and limiting saturated fat intake in order to lose weight. On the other hand, the fiber group merely ate more fiber-rich foods like fruits, veggies and whole grains with a minimum quota of 30 grams of fiber each day.

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After a year, researchers were startled by the results. Both groups lost the same amount of weight while also lowering their cholesterol, blood pressure and blood sugar levels. “By changing one thing, people in the fiber group were able to improve their diet and lose weight and improve their overall markers for metabolic syndrome,” the study author Dr. Yunsheng Ma, told Women’s Health.

While this obviously isn’t a reason to completely leave the AHA diet in the dust from now on, it does give us a less restrictive option for becoming healthier and dropping a few pounds. The benefits of fiber have been known for a while, but no one knew just how impactful it could be on weight loss until now. After all, adding food to your diet is certainly easier than cutting foods out cold turkey, and as it turns out, a healthier you can be achieved by simply eating more fiber.

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