Hummus is an excellent addition to a weight loss routine. It is a creamy spread rich in spices, herbs, and flavorful ingredients, making it a nutritious superfood. Although hummus originated in the Middle East, its high fiber and protein content has made it a popular snacking choice for people worldwide.
However, it’s important to consider your daily calorie intake when incorporating hummus into your diet and pair it with other options. Yes, this spread makes crackers, bell peppers, and cucumbers taste delicious, but they can add extra calories to your diet plan.
So, what is the best way to eat hummus for weight loss? If you want to include hummus in your weight loss plan, this guide lists down the best foods to eat with it and lose some pounds in the most flavorsome way.
Can You Have Hummus on a Diet?
Hummus is a spread made of chickpeas blended in oil with tahini (sesame seed paste), garlic, and lemon juice. That’s the traditional recipe, but many other variations are found in different parts of the world.
Some people add herbs and spices in hummus, like parsley, cumin, or sumac, for a unique flavor. Meanwhile, others replace chickpeas with white or black beans. Regardless of the ingredients used, hummus will fulfill most of your daily vitamins and minerals, including copper, manganese, and B-complex vitamins.
The USDA’s data reveals that 100 grams of store-bought hummus contains around 237 calories, including 7.8 grams of protein, 15 grams of carbohydrates (5.5 grams of dietary fiber), and 17.8 grams of fat (2.6 grams of saturated fat). However, homemade hummus can differ a little in terms of nutrition.
Preparing hummus at home is easy, and you can switch any ingredient according to your taste buds. For instance, you can replace the cooking oil with olive or flaxseed oil to reduce calories and increase the omega-3 fatty acid content.
Is Hummus Good for Weight Loss?
So, hummus is delicious, nutritious, and flavorful, but is it good for weight loss? Here are some factors that make it an excellent option to lose weight:
- Rich in Protein and Fiber
Protein-rich foods keep you full and satisfied longer than carbs and fats. Hummus is not only high in protein but also in fiber. Its protein content offers satiation, while fiber slows down digestion, making it a good weight loss option.
When you stay full for an extended period, you will have more control over your daily calorie intake. That’s ideal for losing weight.
- Contains Healthy Monounsaturated Fats
Besides protein and fiber, hummus includes healthy fats from tahini, a sesame seed paste, and olive oil, rich in monounsaturated fats. These fats regulate healthy body functions while keeping you full for a long time.
According to a study, monounsaturated fat-rich diets downregulate certain fat gene expressions to prevent the body fat distribution around the participant’s belly. This property makes hummus perfect for weight loss.
- A Low-Calorie Option
Hummus not only makes a delicious spread or dip, but it is also lower in calories than other options. For instance, one serving of two tablespoons of ranch dressing contains 140 calories, while commercial and homemade hummus has around 70 calories. That’s a huge difference!
This means you can have a bigger portion of hummus whenever you’re craving more. However, don’t go too overboard, or you may surpass your calorie deficit range.
- Versatile and Nutritious Snack
Hummus is packed with phosphorus, iron, folate, and Vitamin B, some of the essential nutrients for our metabolism. They keep us full and energized throughout the day.
The best part is that you can consume it in multiple ways. Whether you’re craving a sandwich or just want a delicious dip for your crackers, hummus will effortlessly complement bread and the crackers. You can also use it as a salad dressing.
The Best Hummus Snacking Options for Weight Loss
One thing is established: hummus is great for weight loss. Here are some excellent options to eat with it to shed some extra pounds without spoiling your tastebuds:
- Cucumbers. These refreshing veggies are low-calorie with a high water content. This makes them the best option to pair with hummus. Believe us; they taste heavenly.
- Carrots. High in fiber and low in calories, carrots taste super delicious with hummus. This snack will keep you satiated for a long time and fulfill your vitamin A needs.
- Bell Peppers. Whether red, yellow, or green, bell peppers make a mouthwatering duo with hummus. These veggies are high in fiber and vitamins A, C, and E, serving as the best weight-loss snack.
- Hard-Boiled Eggs. Looking for a delicious protein option? Try hard-boiled eggs with hummus. Simply boil an egg, slice it, and dip it in hummus to satisfy your hunger for a long time.
- Small (Cherry) Tomatoes. Tomatoes offer a juicy option to pair with hummus. Cherry tomatoes are high in fiber, minerals, and vitamins and, of course, low in calories.
- Broccoli, Cabbage, or Cauliflower. If you love munching on steamed or raw green veggies, pair them with hummus and enjoy an excellent low-calorie, weight-loss snack. Cauliflower, broccoli, and cabbage are fiber-rich and promote fullness and digestion.
- Avocado and Toast. You can add hummus to your typical avocado on toast snack and transform it into a healthy weight-loss snack. It also makes an excellent breakfast option.
Low-Calorie Hummus Meals for Weight Loss
Hummus makes an excellent snacking or breakfast option, but can you include it in your main meals? Yes, you can. Here are a few ways to make your diet delicious:
- Make a hummus puree or keep it creamy, and use it as a salad dressing. It makes the best replacement for high-calorie mayonnaise and ranch sauce.
- You can also add hummus as a dip in your chicken wrap. It tastes delicious with grilled chicken and pita bread.
- Stuff hummus and quinoa in bell peppers and bake them in the oven. You will love the result.
- Salmon tastes mouthwatering with hummus. Simply put hummus in salmon and then bake it to perfection. A tantalizing yet flavorful weight-loss meal is ready!
Final Takeaway: Hummus for Weight Loss
Hummus is a low-calorie spread high in fiber, protein, and essential vitamins. It’s a superfood that tastes amazing with various foods, including veggies, avocado and toast, eggs, and even your regular meals.
While hummus is a powerhouse of many health benefits, you should take it with a balanced diet to lose weight.
If you crave something mouth-watering yet healthy, simply take the hummus out and dip low-calorie crackers in it. However, be aware of your daily hummus portion and ensure it stays under your calorie limit. Enjoy a delicious weight loss!
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- Paniagua JA, Gallego de la Sacristana A, Romero I, Vidal-Puig A, Latre JM, Sanchez E, Perez-Martinez P, Lopez-Miranda J, Perez-Jimenez F. Monounsaturated fat-rich diet prevents central body fat distribution and decreases postprandial adiponectin expression induced by a carbohydrate-rich diet in insulin-resistant subjects. Diabetes Care. 2007;30(7):1717-23.
- Wallace TC, Murray R, Zelman KM. The nutritional value and health benefits of chickpeas and hummus. Nutrients. 2016;8(12):766.
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