7 foods that do the weight-loss work for you

Fill up on high-fiber foods to help prevent weight gain.
EatingWell // EatingWell

Why fiber? Recent research in the Journal of Nutrition suggests eating more fiber as a way to prevent weight gain or even encourage weight loss. Over the course of the two-year study, the researchers found that boosting fiber by 8 grams for every 1,000 calories resulted in about 4 ½ pounds of weight lost.

Try it for yourself. If you’re consuming 2,000 calories per day, aim to increase your fiber by 16 grams. Here are 7 fiber-rich foods that help do the weight-loss work for you.

Related: Fiber-Rich Recipes to Help You Lose Weight

1 of 9 Photo: Ken Burris

Apples

A medium apple (3-inch diameter) contains 4 grams of fiber; a large apple (3¼-inch diameter) has 5. Apples also offer a bit of vitamin C and potassium.

Related: Is Juicing a Fast Way to Eat More Fruits and Vegetables?

Related recipe from EatingWell: Skillet Chicken with Cranberries & Apples

2 of 9 Photo: Ken Burris

Green beans

One cup boasts 4 grams of fiber, plus a healthy dose (30% daily value) of skin-helping vitamin C.

Related: Produce-Packed Recipes for Summer

Related recipe from EatingWell: Packet-Roasted Balsamic Green Beans & Peppers

3 of 9 Photo: Ken Burris

Sweet potatoes

A medium-size baked sweet potato (2 inches wide, 5 inches long...a little larger than your computer mouse), skin included, offers 5 grams of fiber—for just 103 calories. It’s also a nutrition powerhouse: providing 438% daily value of eye-healthy vitamin A (eat these foods to help you see more clearly), 37% daily value of vitamin C, plus some potassium, vitamin E, iron, magnesium and phytochemicals like beta carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin.

Related recipe from EatingWell: Sweet Potato & Red Pepper Pasta

4 of 9 Photo: Ken Burris

Raspberries

Raspberries are a great source of fiber—some of it soluble in the form of pectin, which helps lower cholesterol. One cup of raspberries has 8 grams of fiber. Raspberries are also an excellent source of vitamin C.

Related recipe from EatingWell: Raspberry, Avocado & Mango Salad

5 of 9 Photo: Ken Burris

Strawberries

One cup of strawberries has a respectable 3 grams of fiber and more than a full day’s recommended dose of vitamin C—an antioxidant that helps keep skin healthy.

Related recipe from EatingWell: Nectarine & Strawberry Parfait

6 of 9 Photo: Ken Burris

Chickpeas

Just 3/4 cup of chickpeas has a whopping 8 grams of fiber! You also get a good amount of vitamin B6 and folate, both of which play a role in forming healthy new cells.

7 of 9 Photo: Ken Burris

Pumpkin

A cup of cooked pumpkin contains 3 grams of fiber. You also get vitamin A (245% daily value), vitamins C, E and potassium.

8 of 9 Photo: Ken Burris