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15 Foods to Eat When You're Not Getting Any Exercise

Even if you don't have access to the gym, you can still stay on track with your weight loss goals by adding these foods to your diet.

Finding the time and the willpower to get your daily dose of exercise can be overwhelming and maybe even feel impossible. Even if you have all the time in the world, you might not have access to a gym to get a whole workout in, so you have to get a bit creative at home. And that's where the food you eat comes into play as you can lose weight with no exercise—as long as you're eating the right foods.

Whether you're looking for a healthier swap to your sweet tooth or a lower calorie meal to start your day, these foods will fill in all of your nutrition needs. Here's a breakdown of the best foods to add to your diet that will help stay on track, even if you can't make the time to exercise! Plus, don't miss Eating Habits to Lose Abdominal Fat As You Age, Say Dietitians.


hot scrambled eggs pan

No matter their shape or form, eggs have a naturally great source of a fat-burning nutrient called choline. They are also a heavy source of lean protein, so when you eat eggs for breakfast, your body will be at a steady fat-burning pace for the rest of the day. Whether you love them classically scrambled or on the sunny side, you don't want to forget the nutritious value that these bad boys can bring.

Tomatoes/Sun-Dried Tomatoes

sun dried tomatoes in bowl with seasoning

Chop them up for a snack, toss them in your salad or even saute them with your chosen protein for dinner—tomatoes have a variety of uses. Naturally, tomatoes produce a rich amount of lycopene and beta-carotene, antioxidants that only increase after cooking and processing, and help minimize fat-storage. So, if you're looking to slim your waist but can't exercise, tomatoes are a great vegetable to get you on your way.


cooked quinoa

Quinoa is the perfect grain to help you maintain a healthy lifestyle. It's a complete, plant-based protein that has tons of fiber and comes in at about 220 calories per cup. And if you're looking for the best ways to cook some up, here are the best quinoa recipes for weight loss.

Sweet Potato


Sweet potatoes are the most superior potatoes when it comes to nutritional value. They are known for being a "slow carb," or in other words, they're carbs that take longer to be digested. This means that they'll keep you feeling full and energized for longer, so you won't find yourself looking around for snacks. Sweet potatoes are also known to have a high vitamin count—including A, C, and B6—and the antioxidant carotenoid, which helps stimulate energy production and counters excessive fat-storage.

Peanut Butter

wyoming peanut butter

Go ahead and grab a spoonful! Just like quinoa, peanut butter is a strong source of plant-based protein that helps boost your metabolism, has monounsaturated fats, and has appetite filling fibers. Quick tip—your peanut butter only needs two main ingredients: nuts and a smidge of salt! So be sure to avoid any brands that add any unwanted ingredients.


black beans

Oh, beans. These little guys are slow-digesting, protein-rich, and high in fiber, which helps to work to lower bad cholesterol and fight against heart disease. And along with helping reduce belly fat and burn fat as fuel, beans are a great food to add on to your meals.

Dark Chocolate

Dark chocolate

Yes, you can still live a healthy lifestyle and enjoy dark chocolate. Dark chocolate has both heart-healthy and gut-healthy compounds, which reduce the risk of heart disease and diabetes as well as burn lower belly inflammation. As long as you choose a bar with a minimum of 70 percent cacao, you will avoid any excess belly-bloating sugars.



There's nothing better than a bowl of oatmeal (or overnight oats) in the morning, right? Well, oats are actually whole-grain carbs that not only have a high protein content, but also have a high amount of soluble fiber. Oats are recommended most for breakfast because of their slow-burning effects to lower hunger and help reduce belly fat for the remainder of the day.

Spaghetti Squash

spaghetti squash two half slices shredded

If you're looking for a healthy swap for your pasta dinner, try using spaghetti squash. One cup of spaghetti squash has less than half of the calories that regular pasta contains. This noodle substitute also has a generous amount of vitamin A and potassium.

Leafy Greens

Kale dark leafy greens hand massaged in bowl

Kale and spinach are both leafy greens that are charged with nutrients. Kale is filled with healthy fibers and antioxidants that promote a full feeling longer which spinach has vitamin A, iron, and folate, which helps boost energy and facilitate your body to burn fat.


green tea being poured into cup

Tea is always a good warm and relaxing beverage to reach for, but it's actually more rewarding than you may have thought. Get to sipping on green tea, oolong tea, white tea to name a few, as they all offer an abundance of antioxidants that counteract the storage of belly fat.

Light Tuna

tuna salad in bowl with garnish

It's affordable and an underrated, but tasty protein—yes, we're talking canned light tuna. The biggest attribute of light tuna is its docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), making the lean protein an exceptional resource for when you're trying to watch your weight.


plain roasted broccoli in white bowl

Broccoli is forever an excellent and easy veggie to whip up for any meal. It's a metabolism-boosting food, with tons of calcium and vitamin C. And hey, it makes for a hearty side dish to your dinner!


Cubed avocado

Avocados have monounsaturated fats, which minimize hunger and enhance a better metabolism, so go ahead and whip up some guacamole! In fact, in a study published in Nutrition Journal, participants who ate half a fresh avocado with lunch reported a 40 percent decreased desire to eat for hours afterward.



Berries are the perfect healthy snack and their natural sugars can help squash your sweet cravings. Raspberries, blueberries, strawberries and all berries have polyphenol antioxidants that thrive on burning fat. Eating colorful fruits can produce better energy levels and help blood flow to your muscles. A win-win all around!

Jordan Summers-Marcouillier
Jordan Summers-Marcouillier was born and raised in San Jose, California and now works as a writer in New York, NY. Read more about Jordan
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