Choosing the right foods when trying to lose weight can be confusing. What about Brussels sprouts, are they good for weight loss or fattening?
Brussels sprouts are the vegetable that looks like a tiny cabbage. It is not the most popular vegetable but people are discovering its health benefits more and more.
Like most vegetables, many people will benefit in terms of weight loss by eating more Brussels sprouts. Find out just how good Brussels sprouts are and how you want to consume them for more weight loss.
Micronutrients in Brussels sprouts
The first thing to look at is the amount of micronutrients in Brussels sprouts.
Micronutrients are a group of nutrients your body absolutely needs to survive and thrive. Micronutrients include vitamins and minerals. These are involved in basically every aspect of your health, including weight loss.
100 grams of raw Brussels sprouts provides you with approximately (1):
- Vitamin K: 221% of the DV (Daily Value)
- Vitamin C: 142% of the DV
- Manganese: 17% of the DV
- Vitamin A: 15% of the DV
- Folate: 15% of the DV
- Vitamin B6: 11% of the DV
- Potassium: 11% of the DV
- Thiamin: 9% of the DV
- Iron: 8% of the DV
- Phosphorus: 7% of the DV
- Magnesium: 6% of the DV
- Riboflavin: 5% of the DV
And some other vitamins and minerals in less significant amounts. The amount of other vitamins and minerals in Brussels sprouts is good compared to many other whole foods.
If you have trouble reaching your daily vitamin and mineral goals Brussels sprouts can help you a nice amount with a few of these goals.
Brussels sprouts also contain certain kinds of antioxidants, substances that help your body deal with oxidative damage. It is not entirely clear if and to what extent antioxidants help weight loss.
Fiber in Brussels sprouts for weight loss
Another very important factor for weight loss is the amount of fiber in your food.
Brussels sprouts contain around 3.8 grams of fiber per 100 grams.
That’s a good amount of fiber per 100 grams compared to many whole foods.
Fiber has multiple benefits for weight loss. First of all, it feeds your microbiome, the microbes that live in your intestines. The health of your microbiome influences your body’s health and weight. Feeding it well is usually not a bad idea.
Fiber also helps you feel less hungry without adding a lot of calories to your diet. Hunger and cravings can be a big pitfall for people trying to lose weight, so avoiding this is a big plus.
With the amount of fiber in Brussels sprouts you can reduce the time you spend craving for food a good amount.
Do Brussels sprouts help you lose weight?
Before knowing whether or not Brussels sprouts deserve a spot in your weight loss diet you still need a final piece of the puzzle. The number of calories in Brussels sprouts.
Brussels sprouts contain 43 calories per 100 grams. 32.2 of these calories come from the carbohydrates (9 g per 100 grams of which 3.8 g fiber).
There are vegetables lower in calories than Brussels sprouts but Brussels sprouts are still generally very low in calories. Fruits, legumes, meats, and everything in between are usually higher in calories than Brussels sprouts.
Brussels sprouts are a very low-calorie food that can help you feel fuller with its fiber content. This can help you avoid higher-calorie foods. For most people that, and thus eating more Brussels sprouts, is enough to help them lose weight.
If you don’t like Brussels sprouts you don’t have to go out of your way to force it into your daily eating habits, Brussels sprouts are not a unique weight loss food. There are other foods that are just as good, or even better for weight loss.
If you are gaining weight while eating Brussels sprouts, the first place to look at is the rest of your diet and other lifestyle habits. Brussels sprouts are generally not fattening.
One thing you have to keep in mind is that Brussels sprouts contain relatively high amounts of vitamin K. This may interfere with certain blood-thinning medication (2). If you take this kind of medication you want to consult with your doctor before implementing large amounts of Brussels sprouts in your diet.
How many Brussels sprouts should you eat a day to lose weight?
Nutrition is always a bit of a puzzle in terms of what the perfect diet looks like. It’s a pretty individual thing.
Consuming enough vitamins and minerals is important for both your short and long-term health and weight loss. Brussels sprouts will provide you with some vitamins and minerals but you will need other nutritious foods as well.
A typical serving size for Brussels sprouts is about 1 cup which is about 88 grams Brussels sprouts. One Brussels sprout weighs about 10 grams so there are about 8-9 Brussels sprouts in a cup.
Some people use this serving size as a daily recommendation for everyone but every situation is different.
If you are close to your daily vitamin and mineral goals you can see how many Brussels sprouts still fit within your daily calories. The amount will be different from individual to individual from day to day, it can be 0 too.
Do brussels sprouts burn belly fat?
Targetting fat loss in a specific area like your belly is generally not possible. Not by eating more of a specific food or by doing a specific exercise. To burn belly fat you have to lose weight overall.
Since Brussels sprouts can help you lose weight in general this food can also help you lose belly fat once your body wants to lose fat in your abdominal area.
How to eat Brussels sprouts for weight loss
There is a wide variety of ways to eat Brussels sprouts. Some are better than others for weight loss. You can eat brussels sprouts raw but most people like them a lot more after some preparation.
The best way to eat Brussels sprouts for weight loss would be boiled on their own or as part of healthy recipes. Here are some examples of healthy recipes you can add Brussels sprouts to:
Baking Brussels sprouts in the oven is also acceptable when it comes to losing weight. In this case you preferably want to use a healthy cooking oil.
Another typical combination is Brussels sprouts with bacon. Pork is decent for weight loss so this combination can definitely be part of a good weight loss diet.