Last week a team of Harvard researchers published the results of a study that looked at how small changes in behavior can affect long-term weight loss. Not surprisingly, diet is the most important factor, but more specifically, an additional daily serving of certain foods can cause the greatest change in weight. Which foods lead to the most weight gain or weight loss?Potato chips top the list of foods that cause weight gain, followed by potatoes, sugar-sweetened beverages, unprocessed red meats, and processed meats. Foods that lead to weight loss include yogurt, nuts, fruits, whole grains, and vegetables.
These findings aren't shocking, but they do emphasize that when it comes to long-term health, focusing on the quality of one's diet is more important than just keeping track of calories or fat. As the study's co-author states, "The idea that there are no 'good' or 'bad' foods is a myth that needs to be debunked."
Anjali is a former private chef who is currently pursuing a graduate degree in nutrition, with plans to become a registered dietitian. She lives in Los Angeles. You can read more of her health-focused writing at Eat Your Greens.
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