In this article I am going to give you my top 12 low calorie foods that are filling.
Let’s face it, dieting sucks.
You are hungry, you want to eat more food, but you can’t.
There quite possibly is nothing worse.
Don’t worry, because I am going to teach you how you can actually eat more food, without breaking the banks on calories.
Thus leading you to stay full while on your diet, which leads to you sticking to your diet, which leads to you seeing results.
I know, sounds crazy right?
I promise, if you stick around for the whole article and don’t just skim it, you will be in a perfect place to do the seemingly impossible.
Without further ado, let’s dive in.
Low Calorie Foods That Are Filling : The Concept
Before we dive right into the list, I want to set up a few principles of why these foods are going to benefit you first.
I am a firm believer that the more educated you are, the more likely you are going to actually implement what we talk about today.
Think about when you just learned something in school, in sports, in your job. You want to use that new information right away!
Same concept here. Stick with me as I do a little bit of educating to try and have you better understand this whole weight loss thing.
None Of These Foods Are Going To “Burn Fat”
You have probably scoured the internet or social media and found someone or something claiming that a certain food is going to “burn fat!”.
This weight loss drink is going to burn belly fat right off your body!
This super food is going to melt the fat away!
I am here to tell you nothing on this list is going to inherently lead to fat loss, because the only thing that leads to fat loss, is being in an overall calorie deficit.
This means you are consuming less total calories than your body is burning.
The next time you see an ad for anything that is “fat burning” or “guaranteed to promote weight loss”, just know it is total BS and they are just trying to take your money.
These foods we will talk about today however will help you get into and stay in this overall calorie deficit, which is why they are so important.
I just wanted to be very clear about that, none of these low calorie foods that are filling that will be listed here today are “magical”. They just will help you get and stay in a calorie deficit for the reasons listed below.
One of the biggest concepts that I need you to understand is the concept of volume eating.
You know that in order to lose weight you need to be in a calorie deficit, correct?
This means you need to eat less calories than your body burns. Yet one of the drawbacks of eating less calories is, you get hungry!
You aren’t eating as much food so your body gets hungry, this obviously then leads to it being harder to stick to your diet if you are always hungry 24/7.
( It may or may not lead to you having some hangry arguments with people!! ).
This is where you can insert this concept of Volume Eating.
This is how I want you to think of volume eating.
Imagine 1 snickers bar inside your stomach that is 230 calories.
Now imagine 3 cups of spinach inside your stomach that is 21 calories.
Notice how in this first picture, that little itty bitty snickers bar is taking up next to no room in your stomach, AND it is more calories?
Compared to the seemingly tons of spinach that is filling up your stomach for quite literally 10x less calories than what the snickers bar is.
This is volume eating.
You are eating more actual food volume and food content, without necessarily eating more calories.
This is going to fill your stomach up for much lower calories, which means you are going to be more full, less hungry, and being able to stick to your calorie deficit more efficiently.
Thus leading to better weight loss results by actually eating “more” food.
Now, Let Me Be Clear
This is typically why “ junk food” gets a bad rap.
There is nothing inherently wrong with a snickers bar. You can absolutely eat it and still lose weight, again, as long as you are in an overall calorie deficit.
Yet the reason that these foods can be somewhat contradictory to weight loss is they give you very little nutritional value, along with very little food volume, for a bit higher calories than some of the foods we will talk about today.
Which means you get less full, more hungry, and are prone to keep eating and eating more calories.
This then leads to you obviously not sticking to your calorie deficit because you are continuously low volume, high calorie foods, which means you will not lose weight.
This is why you should learn to practice the 80/20 rule .
This rule essentially states that you should have 80% of your food choices coming from nutrient dense, whole, “healthy” foods.
While 20% can come from treats you enjoy like a snickers bar.
This way your diet is primarily made up of lower calorie, higher volume foods to keep you full and satisfied, as opposed to the opposite.
This allows you to stick to your calorie deficit more consistently, which leads to sustainable weight loss.
I will give you the exact low calorie foods that are filling when it comes to volume eating a bit later in this article, but first let’s talk about high protein and high fiber foods.
Low Calorie Foods That Are Filling : High Protein & Fiber
The next biggest concept I need you to understand is learning what foods keep you the most satiated.
Satiated just means the foods that keep you the most full.
We just learned about volume eating so we know that helps keep you full.
Let’s now talk about protein and fiber, the two most underrated things when it comes to dieting.
First I will cover protein.
I won’t beat the horse too much here, because I have done multiple videos and articles alike talking about the importance of protein in your diet .
Yet to keep things sweet, protein is the most satiating macronutrient.
( Macro nutrients are protein, carbs, and fats. Out of those 3, protein is the one that fills you up the most! ).
A lot of the low calorie foods that are filling we will talk about today have the basis of protein for this exact reason.
I have seen protein literally change peoples lives, not only when it comes to losing weight and staying more full, but also massively helping with things like binge eating or over eating.
These foods typically tend to be “lower calorie” between the fact that they are in fact lower calories, but they also fill you up the most.
Therefore you eat less calories overall as a result of eating protein.
If you are under eating on protein, you can do all of the volume eating you want, you will still more than likely be on the hungry side of the fence, so be sure to get adequate protein in your day.
Again, if you would like to, feel free to check out some of my resources above on protein.
Next up we have fiber.
People often forget about fiber and it’s role in keeping you full throughout the day.
Fiber is a very slow digesting micronutrient. This means it takes a while for your body to digest and break it down.
As a result, it stays in your stomach a bit longer leading it to fill you up longer.
As well as they typically tend to lean towards the higher volume side as well, making it a double whammy for those looking to stay full for fewer calories.
This is why a lot of fruits and vegetables have a ton of fiber in them, as well as they tend to be higher volume foods, which makes them a staple of any healthy diet.
Therefore finding some go to high fiber foods that you can consistently rotate and eat during your day is going to help you tremendously.
We will go through some examples of foods high in fiber here shortly.
Low Calorie Foods That Are Filling : 12 Top Options
Now you know there reasoning behind what keeps you full between fiber, protein, and volume eating.
By no means are those the only 3 concepts, there are plenty others, but for the purpose of this article I thought it was important you understood those 3.
We are now going to dive into the list of 12 low calorie foods that are filling.
As well as what makes them be able to make this list!
These are in no particular order by the way.
Watermelon is my go to food to myself or any of my clients who are dieting.
By far it is one of the “high volume, low calorie” foods that you can absolutely fill up on for low calories.
For a whole lb of watermelon, it is only 150 calories.
A whole lb! That is a ton of food going into your stomach for NOT a ton of calories!
Be sure to utilize watermelon to help curb a sweet tooth as well!
Strawberries are another great option for anyone who is looking to have a little volume eating to their game.
For a whole lb of strawberries, it is only about 150 calories once again.
A ton of food volume, for not a ton of calories.
Btw, strawberries and watermelon are my two favorite fruits, so I got lucky!
I feel like a good quality oatmeal is one of those foods I just label as “stick to the bones” filling.
Oatmeal is high in fiber, as well as the food volume is a lot too.
It can also be very thick, which again can help fill your stomach up.
I like to use the regular, one minute, low sugar oatmeal. Not because sugar is bad, but because the one without sugar I have seen tends to be more filling and more food volume as well.
As mentioned previously above, for 1 cup of spinach it is about roughly 10 calories.
Have you ever gotten out 3 or 4 cups of spinach and seen how much food that is? If not, I encourage you to do so.
Once again this falls under our volume eating category. This is the perfect one of the low calorie foods that are filling.
5. Greek Yogurt
Now we dive into the protein that we talked about earlier.
Greek Yogurt is super high in protein as well it tends to be on the higher volume side as well, leading to a great low calorie filling food.
It is also quick and easy which is why it makes the top lists.
6. Cottage Cheese
I basically call cottage cheese greek yogurts step brother.
They are very similar. High in protein, high in food volume, low in calories, and quick and easy.
7. Cauliflower Rice
Cauliflower rice is a huge client favorite of mine.
It is a TON of food volume, for next to no calories!
For one cup it is around 25 calories.
Imagine 3-4 cups of cauliflower rice vs 3-4 cups of regular rice.
That would be a difference of 75 calories vs 375 calories roughly.
A massively underrated food when looking to lose weight!
Eggs are a great source of protein, fat, and nutrients.
Yes, you can eat the egg yolk, that is what provides the healthy fat and nutrients.
These little guys can help fill you up tremendously and while the egg yolk might be more calories than just the egg whites, it will pay off in how it keeps you full.
You could also combine whole eggs with egg whites to keep you full and satisfied with getting the benefits of more food volume and the egg yolk health benefits!
9. Rice Cakes
Rice cakes are one of my all time favorite go to snacks.
For one rice cake it is roughly 30-40 calories.
They are also very easily digestible. You can add things to them as well like fruit, greek yogurt, cottage cheese, etc.
Combine powers to get even more low calorie foods that are filling!!
10. Chicken Breast
There is a reason that chicken breast is a staple of any “diet” you see.
It is incredibly low calorie for a pretty decent amount, plus it is protein, which we know fills you up.
It is a leaner source of protein, meaning very minimal carbs or fats, but super high in protein.
This makes it a great choice while looking to keep calories low!
11. Protein Shakes
Protein Shakes are a great way to get high volume (because you can mix it in water or almond milk, which adds more volume to your stomach for no calories) while also getting protein in as well!
It is a double whammy!
I wrote an entire article on protein shakes HERE if you want to check out which ones I recommend.
** Ps: If you want to try this particular protein powder, it is amazing-balls. Check it out HERE and you can use my code “ERIC” to get 20% off.
12. 0 Calorie Drinks
Alright while these technically aren’t a food, they sure are low calories!
0 calorie drinks are a great option you can use to your advantage while dieting, things like
- sparkling water
- Seltzer water
- Diet soda
- 0 calorie Powerade, gatorade, etc
Now some people might freak out over diet soda, but you don’t have to!
Should you drink 7 diet sodas per day? No, probably not.
But a few here and there throughout the week in moderation is 100% totally fine.
* Pro tip, the carbonation in 0 calorie drinks will help fill you up as well! *.
Low Calorie Foods That Are Filling : Final Word
Well there you have it!
The how, what, and why behind low calorie foods that are filling.
I hope you enjoyed this article as well as learned something from it.
Remember, dieting doesn’t have to suck as bad as people make it out to seem.
Be sure to use these tips here to help tackle your diet a bit better.
If you need some extra help with your own personal nutrition, feel free to head HERE to see if myself or my team may be a good fit for you!
Look to chat soon,