Foods high in omega-3 fatty acids, protein, and certain antioxidants may help promote fat loss. Certain beverages, including coffee, also have metabolism-boosting properties.

Boosting your metabolic rate can help you lose body fat.

However, most “fat-burning” supplements on the market are either unsafe, ineffective, or both.

Fortunately, several natural foods and beverages have been shown to increase your metabolism and promote fat loss.

Here are 11 healthy foods that may help you burn fat.

1. Fatty fish

Salmon, herring, sardines, mackerel, and other fatty fish contain omega-3 fatty acids, which may help you lose body fat.

Fish is also an excellent source of high quality protein, which may lead to greater feelings of fullness and can help increase your metabolic rate.

Most organizations recommend consuming two servings (3 ounces (oz) each) of fatty fish per week to see the health benefits.

2. MCT oil

Medium-chain triglycerides (MCT) oil is made by extracting MCTs from palm oil. It’s a type of fat that’s metabolized differently than the long-chain fatty acids found in most foods.

Research suggests that MCTs may help increase metabolic rate, reduce hunger, and promote better retention of muscle mass during weight loss.

Studies suggest that replacing fat in your diet with 1.52 tablespoons (tbsp) of MCT oil per day can boost fat burning. Try to start with 1 teaspoon (tsp) and gradually increase to avoid digestive side effects.

3. Coffee

Coffee is one of the most popular beverages worldwide.

Coffee a great source of caffeine, which may help you burn fat. To get the fat-burning benefits of caffeine without the potential side effects, such as anxiousness or insomnia, aim for no more than 400 mg per day.

This is the amount found in about 4–5 cups of coffee, depending on its strength. Some people are more sensitive to caffeine’s effects and may need to limit their intake.

4. Eggs

Although egg yolks have traditionally been avoided due to their high cholesterol content, whole eggs may help with weight loss.

For one, they are very nutrient-dense and contain a lot of protein, which can help ward off hunger and overeating. For example, a 2017 study found that eating a high-protein diet reduced the subject’s hunger by 16% while increasing daily fullness by 25%.

One of the reasons eggs are so filling may also be due to the boost in calorie burning that occurs during protein digestion.

Eating up to three eggs a week can help you burn fat while keeping you full and satisfied. More than this amount has been associated with a higher chance of heart disease.

5. Green tea

In addition to providing a moderate amount of caffeine, green tea is an excellent source of epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), an antioxidant that promotes fat burning and the loss of belly fat.

Though research suggests that drinking green tea may help improve your metabolism and lower your body fat, more research is necessary to support these claims.

That said, drinking about 2-3 cups of green tea daily may be optimal for providing the variety of health benefits.

6. Whey protein

Consuming whey protein may help you suppress appetite, especially because it stimulates the release of “fullness hormones,” such as PYY and GLP-1.

Moreover, whey appears to boost fat burning and promote weight loss. For this reason, a whey protein shake is a quick meal or snack option that promotes fat loss and may help improve your body composition.

7. Apple cider vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is an ancient folk remedy with evidence-based health benefits.

Animal research suggests that vinegar’s main component, acetic acid, may help increase fat burning and reduce belly fat storage in several animal studies. However, more human studies are needed to verify this.

Start with 1 tsp per day diluted in water and gradually work up to 1 tbsp per day to minimize potential digestive discomfort.

8. Chili peppers

Chili peppers contain powerful antioxidants. One of these is called capsaicin, and cosuming it may help you achieve and maintain a healthy weight by promoting fullness and preventing overeating.

Consider eating chili peppers or using powdered cayenne pepper to spice up your meals several times a week.

9. Oolong tea

Oolong tea is contains polyphenols, which are compounds associated with helping reduce things like blood sugar and and body weight.

Like other teas, it also contains caffeine, which helps promote weight and body fat loss.

Drinking a few cups of green tea, oolong tea, or a combination of the two on a regular basis may promote fat loss and provide other beneficial health effects.

That said, most research on oolong tea and weight loss is based on animals, so more human studies are needed.

10. Full-fat Greek yogurt

Full-fat Greek yogurt is extremely nutritious. First, it’s an excellent source of protein, potassium, and calcium.

Research also suggests that eating high protein dairy products can boost weight and fat loss.

Eating 2 servings of dairy such as Greek yogurt daily may provide a number of health benefits. But make sure to choose plain, full-fat Greek yogurt.

11. Olive oil

Olive oil is one of the healthiest fats on earth.

Most of olive oil is composed of oleic acid, which has been shown to have a positive effect on fat and body mass.

To incorporate olive oil into your daily diet, drizzle a couple of tablespoons on your salad or add it to cooked food.

What are some fat burning drinks?

Drinks that may help you lose fat include tea, coffee, certain protein shakes, and vegetable juices.

What foods help burn stomach fat?

Foods that may help losing belly fat include high-fiber foods like fruit and vegetables, high-protein foods like eggs or beans, and fatty fish. Probiotics may also help.

How do I lose 20 pounds (lb) in a month?

To lose weight, you need to create a calorie deficit. This means eating fewer calories, increasing exercise, or a combination of both.

That said, while it’s possible to lose 20 lb in a month, this isn’t sustainable and should only be attempted under the guidance of a doctor. It’s far healthier to gradually lose small amounts of weight over time.

The bottom line

Despite what certain supplement manufacturers may suggest, there isn’t a safe “magic pill” that can help you burn hundreds of extra calories per day.

However, a number of foods and beverages may modestly increase your metabolic rate in addition to providing other health benefits.

Including several of them in your daily diet may have effects that ultimately lead to fat loss and better overall health.