woman food shopping
woman food shopping
(Image credit: Rex Features (Shutterstock))

Make almonds your go-to snack

Almonds contain some fat, which has a satiating effect. By boosting the enjoyment you get from eating, fat may help to switch off hunger signals temporarily. This means you're less likely to have cravings.

Tip: Eat a handful, slowly, every day. A study in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that chewing almonds 25 to 40 times before swallowing increased satiety even more. Be eau so good

Water fills you up for zero calories. One study found that drinking water before a meal helped slimmers lose an extra four pounds in weight over a period of 12 weeks. They also ate less during meals.

Tip: Drink 2 x 200ml glasses before each meal. Get up and go

Feel like eating a steak after the gym? Thought not. Exercise boosts leptin, the appetite suppressing hormone.

Tip: Any exercise, such as brisk walking, that gets you slightly out of breath will do the trick. Get over egg-cited

Eggs are a filling breakfast and have been found to reduce the number of calories eaten at lunchtime and shave 400 calories off the average daily intake. The secret? They're a rich source of protein, which takes longer to digest than carbohydrates and helps stave off mid-morning hunger pangs.

Tip: Have two eggs with a low-GI carbohydrate (rye, wholegrain or wholemeal pitta bread). Hail the apple as your new superfood

Full of fibre and water, apples are fantastically filling relative to their calorific value. When digested, apples produce the hormone GLP-, which sends full signals to the brain. You'll reap other health benefits, too, as apples are packed with vitamins.

Tip: Eat an apple 15 minutes before dinner. The key antioxidant quercetin sits just under the skin, so don't peel apples before eating. But dried apples are packed with calories.

Chop the chillies

Capscaicin, the compound that gives chilli pepper its kick, boosts heat generation by the body, known as diet-induced thermogenesis. This is when the body burns calories rather than storing them. Research suggests that capsaicin might also have an appetite-suppressing effect.

Make friends with your bacteria

Prebiotic yoghurt drinks feed the healthy bacteria in the gut. A study in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that taking a daily prebiotic caused an average weight loss of 2.2lb over 12 weeks.

Tip: Drink a 100ml prebiotic a day. Treat yourself to early nights

A lack of shut-eye plays havoc with appetite hormones, which explains those carb cravings when you're sleep-deprived.

Tip: Get eight hours. Scientists found that people who slept less than eight hours a night weighed more than those who slept more.