13 Carbohydrates That Can Help You Lose Weight

You read it right, these starchy foods will help fill you up so that you can maintain a healthy weight

Whole-Wheat Pasta

If you are a big pasta eater, opt for the whole-wheat variety. White pasta has less fiber in it than whole wheat, and fiber can help reduce cholesterol(Photo: Flickr/Meal Makeover Moms)


This super seed (that’s right, quinoa is actually a seed!) is a fabulous source of fiber and protein. Quinoa is an excellent alternative to rice, orzo, or even your standard pasta. A word to the wise: a little bit of quinoa goes a long way, so be sure to measure out your portions properly before you cook.



Barley contains soluble fiber that can help to lower cholesterol, blood pressure, and blood sugar, and it’s also very helpful in promoting weight loss. This high-fiber super food helps to control appetite, making you feel fuller quicker so you don’t overeat. 

(Photo: Flickr/Lynn Gardner)

Wheat Berries

Wheat berries are whole wheat kernels; since they’re unrefined like other types of wheat they contain more nutrients and fiber than their processed counterparts. Cracked in salads, cooked as a grain, or ground into flour for baking, wheat berries are an excellent source of dietary fiber and can help to lower blood cholesterol and blood sugar levels, as well as aiding in weight management and digestive health. 

(Photo Modified: flickr/veganbakin.net)

Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potatoes are a super source of vitamin A, vitamin C, calcium, and iron. One medium baked sweet potatoes contains about 100 calories and no fat, so feel free to enjoy this starchy treat in moderation without the guilt.

(Photo Modified: Flickr/Steve Johnson)



The fiber in beans can help lower cholesterol and keep your digestive system healthy. In order to enjoy the full benefits of beans, combine them with a healthy grain, like brown rice or whole wheat pasta, for a complete meal. As an added bonus, eating rice and beans together provides your body with a complete source of protein; one that contains all the amino acids it needs to function. Other food pairs that provide complete proteins are pita with hummus and cheese with whole-grain or sprouted crackers.

(Photo Modified: flickrrebecca siegel)


Frozen or fresh, eating peas regularly is a great way to meet your daily fiber needs. Fiber helps you to feel fuller longer, which is crucial when it comes to managing your weight.

(Photo: flickrIsabel Eyre)


If you’re vegan or vegetarian, eating lentils regularly is a great way to replenish the iron and fiber in your body. Lentils are also a great source of B vitamins, which can help with the healthy functioning of the nervous system.

(Photo: flickrEmily Carlin)


Oats have a range of health benefits, but are most commonly known for their ability to reduce appetite. You can help to reduce your appetite further by adding high-fiber fruits and vegetables into your bowl of oatmeal.

(Photo Modified: flickrjon bunting)


These little seeds have become extremely popular over the last few years, and for good reason. As few as two tablespoons of chia seeds can provide you with a significant amount of fiber. Chia seeds are also a great source of omega-3 fatty acids, which are extremely important for heart and brain health. Add these into your yogurt, smoothie, or cereal for an easy nutrient boost.

(Photo: flickrLarry Jacobsen)

Brown Rice

Ladies, listen up: women who consume more whole grains, like brown rice, are 49 percent less likely to gain weight compared to women who eat foods made from refined grains. So, replace your white rice with brown rice from now on! A great way to get started is to do half white and half brown rice until you get accustomed to the brown.

(Photo Modified: flickrArriabelli)

Buckwheat Noodles

Also called soba, buckwheat noodles are made from the buckwheat seed, and have a much higher nutritional benefit than noodles made from semolina or other grains. Consuming buckwheat noodles also helps to regulate your blood pressure and cholesterol.

(Photo: flickr/Jody Richards)


Corn gets a lot of flak since it is a starch, but it can be extremely helpful in weight loss and management. Corn is low in calories but high in protein and in fiber, meaning you can eat a fairly large portion of it, get full, and stay that way for a while. But, because corn does have a significant amount of carbohydrates, don’t go overboard with it. Combine it with beans, eggs, or lean meat for a complete, healthy meal.

(Photo: flickr/Liz West)