If you have a goal you wish to attain—whether it’s a promotion, a trip, or weight loss—you should do two things right away: find someone who’s where you want to be, and model his or her behavior.
Skinny people eat soup.
So say the studies, including one conducted by Barbara Rolls, Ph.D. She and her researchers at Penn State say it’s the weight of food that leads to satiety, not the calories or amount of fat. And if we seek heavy foods to fill us, it stands to reason that foods heavy from water, rather than carbs and/or fat, would do our bodies good.
Nearly all diet advice includes the tip to drink a full glass of water before each meal. Eating a large salad or bowl of vegetable soup before a meal has even greater benefit: it provides filling, bulky nutrition without the calories. And, Rolls says, “Water in food is chemically different [from] water taken as a beverage. It leaves the stomach more slowly.”1 A serving of soup satisfies the eye, too; it looks big. Another bonus: a cup of soup that’s 100 calories takes longer to eat than a 100-calorie piece of candy.
In case you need more proof that soup fills you up: In the same study, Rolls’ students served the same chicken and rice as a casserole, first as a soup, then as a casserole with a glass of water. “The soup eaters ate 26% less during the subsequent meal than either of the other groups…” even though the ingredients in water-casserole combo matched the soup exactly.2
What does that mean for people on the 5 & 1 Plan, in transition, or on maintenance? Chicken & Wild Rice, Chicken Flavored Noodle, Cream of Broccoli, Cream of Chicken, Tomato Basil Bisque, and Maryland Style Crab Soup! If you’re on plan, try preceding your Lean with a soup of Green. While you’ll still be eating the same quantity of food for that meal, it may satisfy you even more. And if you’re in transition or on maintenance, do the same!
Soup. It’s what’s before dinner!