While there's no such thing as a zero-calorie food, there are foods you can enjoy freely without having to worry about packing on the pounds. According to nutritionist Dr. Lisa Young, these foods generally fall into one of two categories: non-starchy fruits or vegetables.
Young says there are few reasons why you won't gain weight from eating these foods:
They're mostly made up of water.
They're low in calories.
They contain fibre, which helps make you feel and stay full.
Although these fruits and vegetables aren't high in protein, they're packed with plenty of vitamins, antioxidants, and other nutrients that have numerous benefits for your health.
Almost 95% of celery is water, but that doesn't mean the vegetable doesn't have significant health benefits. Celery contains potassium, folate, fibre, and 30% of your daily requirement of vitamin K. There are only six calories in a single serving. You're best off eating celery when it's fresh, though. The vegetable loses many of its antioxidants within five to seven days of being purchased.
A fruit that is mostly made up of water, cucumbers only contain 16 calories per serving. The seeds and skin contain most of the fruit's nutritional value, so you're best off not peeling your cucumbers. The peel and seeds provide both fibre and a form of vitamin A known as beta-carotene, which is known to be good for your eyes.
Studies have shown that adding grapefruit to your diet can increase weight loss, which is often why it's considered a diet food. This is because grapefruits are high in fibre, which keeps hunger at bay by stabilizing blood sugar levels and helping you feel fuller for longer. There are only 50 calories in one half of a grapefruit. The vitamin C found in grapefruit can reduce the risk of a number of health problems, like cancer and heart issues. Grapefruit can also work wonders in lowering cholesterol and improving digestion, and the folate found in the fruit makes it an ideal snack for pregnant women.
Although its white colour may make people think otherwise, cauliflower is actually a very versatile and nutritious vegetable. It contains antioxidants and phytochemicals — both of which help to fight off chronic disease — and it's an excellent source of folate, fibre, and vitamins C and K. There are around 25 calories in one serving.
There's more vitamin C in one serving of strawberries than there is in one orange. In addition, strawberries are also bursting with polyphenols, a type of antioxidant. Strawberries are also a good source of potassium and fibre, and they're fat-free, sodium-free, and cholesterol-free, which makes them healthy for the heart. One cup of the fruit only has around 50 calories.