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The #1 Best Oatmeal Topping for Weight Loss, Says Dietitian

Your favorite heart-healthy breakfast just got an upgrade.

We know there is no single magical food that drives more weight loss. However, there are specific foods and nutrients that certainly can support weight loss more than others.

When working toward weight loss, eating a balanced breakfast starts your day off on the right foot. A balanced breakfast can help you feel more full, satisfied, and can even reduce cravings throughout the day.

Oatmeal has long been correlated with improved health such as lower cholesterol and better blood sugar. However, oatmeal itself is a complex carbohydrate. While the fiber and whole grains in oatmeal are good for our heart health, we can level-up this breakfast option for your weight loss goals.

The key is to start your day with a breakfast that is high in protein, fiber, and healthy fats. While oatmeal alone is a great source of a high-fiber carbohydrate, it lacks protein and healthy fat to round out the meal.

Enter: chia seeds! Chia seeds offer a small protein boost, healthy fat, and a powerful dose of fiber for more fullness and satisfaction on your weight loss journey.

Protein for energy

oatmeal with strawberries and chia seeds

One serving of chia seeds provides five grams of protein. Combined with the six grams of protein in oatmeal, this nearly doubles the total amount of protein in your breakfast. More protein at breakfast ensures better blood sugar, stable energy levels, and may improve hunger levels during the day.

Get creative! Other ways to add protein to oatmeal include using protein powder, Greek yogurt, or milk.

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Healthy fat for satisfaction

peanut butter blueberry oatmeal

Chia seeds contain omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3s are known to have an improved effect on metabolic health. Many Americans are lacking in omega-3s and typically consume an overabundance of omega-6s. Thus their 6:3 ratio is skewed to contribute to less optimal health.

Chia seeds may improve your 6:3 ratio. In addition to its health benefits, the fat in chia seeds can also improve satisfaction and feeling full for longer.

Here's What Happens to Your Body When You Eat Chia Seeds.

Fiber for fullness

pumpkin chia overnight oats

We know that diets high in fiber are strongly associated with long-term weight loss. Chia seeds offer 10 grams of fiber per two-tablespoon serving.

These mighty seeds also expand in liquid, further increasing their volume and improving your sensations of fullness.

You can make overnight oats in the fridge, and the chia seeds will absorb the moisture overnight. The consistency is perfect, and you have a grab-and-go breakfast in the morning.

Searching for more? We've got you covered with these 26 Best Omega-3 Superfoods!

Caroline Thomason, RDN
Caroline is a women's health Registered Dietitian and diabetes educator based in Northern Virginia. Read more about Caroline