While you can still achieve weight loss eating only junk food, it’s typically not the savviest way. This is because intelligent dieting involves manipulating more than just reducing calories.
In fact, there are many other variables you can manipulate to support a dieting attempt, such as satiety, palatability and energy density. Doing this won’t necessarily enhance fat loss but it will typically make it easier to adhere to the dieting protocols, which is half the battle.
A study by Holt et al (1995) analysed the satiety of common foods. That is, to what degree the individual achieved meal satisfaction and fullness from a food choice. Knowing the satiety of certain foods is important, especially as the researchers found that food satiety strongly impacted how much was eaten at the meal or over the next few hours.
In this study, the participants were fed a 240-calorie serving of the listed foods and required to rate their satiety. The results found that your classic junk foods were rated as having the lowest satiety, while the food with the highest satiety was POTATOES!
Here the strongest predictor of satiety was the serving size, which was impacted by the energy density of each food. Additionally, low energy density foods are typically higher in fibre or water, adding more volume without greater energy, thereby making them harder to eat.
It’s important to note though, that just because a food has lower satiety, that doesn’t mean it’s a “bad food”. It just has lower satiety which is important to be aware of if dieting. In certain instances, such as when you need to seriously increase your calories, increasing the consumption of lower satiety and more palatable foods is a viable option for supporting your goal.
Ultimately, potatoes aren’t essential to dieting success but they’re a nice option to include to make the process a little easier.