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The Four Most Filling Foods

Fitday Editor

Filling foods don't have to bog you down and make it tough to lose weight or maintain a healthy weight. In fact, the most filling foods are generally healthy options because they're packed with nutrients, fiber and even protein. Consuming the most nutrient dense foods is the best way to keep yourself full throughout the day while staying lean. Whether you want to lose additional weight or you just want to maintain your physique, consider eating the following foods that are guaranteed to fill you up and keep you that way even through a hefty workout.

1. Legumes

Beans of all kinds--lentils, soy nuts and chickpeas--are all excellent choices when you're looking for a food that will provide you with lots of fuel to get you through the day. These foods are full of fiber, protein and many vitamins and minerals. They're easy to incorporate into just about meal and the canned variety is a convenient way to keep them easily accessible when in a pinch. Add them to salads, rice, pastas and even sandwiches for a quick pick me up and energy booster.

2. Whole Grains

Whole wheat pasta, brown rice, quinoa, couscous, millet, spelt, buckwheat and other whole grains are filled with fiber like beans are; they provide plenty of protein and they also help to bulk up any meal and turn it into something that will fill you up (and keep you that way throughout the day). Oatmeal in the morning will provide enough energy to make it to lunch without feeling deprived or famished; pasta for lunch will provide enough fuel to finish the day; and a buckwheat stir fry would be a perfect way to finish the day and to keep you satisfied through bedtime.

3. Green Vegetables

Green veggies, especially those that are leafy, contain high amounts of antioxidants such as vitamins A, C, E and some B vitamins. Many also provide readily available calcium, protein and fiber. Eating at least five servings of vegetables and making sure that at least two of those are leafy greens won't only keep you full and satisfied throughout the day, but they'll also help you maintain a healthy heart while steering clear of colds and other ailments.

Although all vegetables are nutrient rich, some of the best options you can incorporate into your regular diet are kale, spinach, dark green lettuces, broccoli, mushrooms, carrots and brightly colored bell peppers. Consider including these vegetables in stir fry meals, salads, casseroles, soups and sandwiches.

4. Nuts and Seeds

Almonds, walnuts, cashews, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds and others are all great forms of protein, a filling food. A handful of nuts or seeds between meals are a great way to stay full and help to avoid feeling deprived throughout the day. You can also add them to salads, soups, pastas and include them in oatmeal, cookies and cakes in order to benefit from the healthy fats they provide.

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