Belly flattening foods to include in your diet to fight off and lose belly fat.
Your belly fat is the most harmful fat in your body, both on your self-esteem and health.
It has been particularly linked to chronic illness such as breast cancer and cardiovascular disease.
The worst of all, when it comes to your belly fat, exercise alone won't help you lose it.
In fact, most people don't realize that you can actually burn belly fat and lose weight without exercise.
In many cases, not eating 'belly fat fighting foods' is worse than eating junk.
The lack of them in your diet can not only slow down your metabolism but also cause your body to store belly fat instead of losing it.
By making simple changes to your diet and including these five foods in your breakfast, lunch and dinner, you can start to see your belly going down in sizes and your health starting to improve.
Here are 5 foods to help you fight and lose your belly fat.
Food #1: Fiber
Consume an adequate amount of dietary fiber in your diet everyday.
According The National Cancer Institute, aim for a minimum of 25-30 grams of fiber.
Considering the average daily intake in America is 11 grams, doubling or tripling the fiber food intake is highly recommended.
Dietary fiber is essential to a healthy diet, and fiber rich foods provides fullness and a sense of satisfaction without adding up calories.
Fiber food is also best known to prevent constipation, stabilize blood sugar, control cravings and prevent overeating. All promote weight and fat loss and is extremely helpful in losing belly fat.
Contrary to popular belief, fiber is in a variety of foods including beans, vegetables, grains, seeds and fruits.
Here are top 10 fiber sources you can easily find in your nearby grocery stores and add to your meals:
- Split peas, cooked (16.3 grams, 1 cup)
- Lentils, cooked (15.6 grams ,1 cup)
- Black beans, cooked (15 grams, 1 cup)
- Lima beans, cooked (13.2 grams , 1 cup)
- Baked beans (10.4 grams, 1 cup)
- Artichoke, cooked (10.3 grams 1 medium size artichoke)
- Green peas, cooked (8.8 grams, 1 cup)
- Raspberries, (8.0 grams, 1 cup)
- Spaghetti, whole-wheat, cooked (6.3 grams, 1 cup)
- Barley, pearled, cooked (6.0 grams, 1 cup)
You can also add fiber to your favorite dishes by adding a tablespoon of chia seeds (5.5 grams of fiber) or two-tablespoon of whole flaxseeds to add 6 grams of fiber.
Food #2: Healthy Fats
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Good healthy dietary fats don't equal belly fat. In fact, it helps burn belly fat!
Healthy fats in the diet, mainly monounsaturated fats and omega-3 fatty acids, have been proven to help promote reduction in belly fat.
However, this is not to say portion control is not needed.
It is still important to keep calories in check as these healthy fats are rich in calories. Make sure to stay within your recommended fat servings per day, which is outlined in the meal plan for your body type.
Here is a list of healthy fat sources for both monounsaturated fats and omega-3 fatty acids and general serving size guidelines from University of Michigan Integrative Medicine.
Food #3: Lean Protein
You need to consume an adequate amount of lean protein in your diet daily.
Protein is one of the most important macronutrients in a 'healthy diet' and an integral part of every cells in your body. It builds, repairs and maintains skin, muscles, bones and organs.
Protein is also used to make hormones, transport nutrients, maintain water balance, and support immune functions.
When it comes to losing weight and reducing belly fat, you need to eat enough protein.
Without it, you may begin to lose muscle mass as you lose weight, which can in fact slow down your metabolism.
As with fats and fiber, protein is a nutrient that is slow in digestion, which helps your body regulate appetite and control hunger.
According to Authority Nutrition, protein shown to reduce cravings by 60%, boost metabolism by 80-100 calories per day and help eat 441 fewer calories per day.
It also takes energy in the form of calories for your body to absorb, digest, and store proteins, carbohydrates, and fats.
Your body uses about twice as many calories to break down protein as fats and carbohydrates, which means protein helps to rev-up your metabolic rate.
We recommend including a source of lean protein at at each meal to help you feel satisfied and avoid cravings. See how much protein to eat daily based on your body type.
Grab the food list for protein ideas: You protein should include animal proteins like chicken breast, eggs, turkey breast, turkey bacon, and fish as well as plant based proteins like tofu and beans.
Proteins are what make up the majority of your muscle.
Food #4: Fruits and veggies
Fruits and vegetables are not only rich in fiber, but they’re also loaded with antioxidants and phytochemicals.
Certain antioxidants, such as vitamin C, have been linked with reducing belly fat by helping to regulate stress hormones in the body.
They’re also rich in minerals like potassium, which helps to expel excess water from the body to further slim down the belly.
Liquid #5: Water
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You are probably not new to the idea of drinking water to lose weight. But you may be wondering whether it really helps you shed pounds.
The short answer is yes.
Drinking water helps you lose weight, boost your metabolism, cleanse your body of waste and suppress an appetite.
Also, it may sound contradicting, but drinking water prevents your body from retaining water, helping you lose the extra water weight you may be carrying.
Because water is an appetite suppressant, drinking it before meals can make you feel fuller and therefore reduce your food intake and thus reduce calorie intake by 75 calories per meal.
So drinking adequate amount of water helps with appetite regulation, promote weight loss, as well as flushing toxins from your body.
How much water to drink daily?
To calculate, multiply your weight in pounds by 0.5 and 0.7. The numbers generated are the range in ounces of water you should drink each day.
For example, if you weigh 150 pounds, your numbers look like below.
- Lower range: 150 x 0.5 = 75 ounces (about 5 fifteen ounce bottle of water)
- Higher range: 150 x 0.7 = 105 ounces (about 7 fifteen ounce bottle of water)
When you exercise in hot weather, your body’s need for water and electrolytes goes up.
Make sure to drink extra water on your workout days. Also pass up the sugary sports drink such as Gatorade and Vitamin Water. Instead, go for 100% coconut water.
There you have 5 foods that burn belly fat. As you transition into a belly-flattening lifestyle, you need to also include an exercise routine to sculpt your abs and strengthen your core and body. Check out our 6 Minute Ab Routine to Blast belly.
- Gunnars, Kris. "6 Proven Ways to Lose Belly Fat (No. 2 and 3 Are Best)." Authority Nutrition, 14 Oct. 2014. Web. 06 July 2015.
- "Nutrition and Healthy Eating." High-fiber Foods. N.p., 17 Nov. 2012. Web. 3 July 2015.
- "Nutrition Facts." And Analysis for Seeds, Flaxseed. N.p., n.d. Web. 06 July 2015.
- Shaw, Gina. "How Much Water Do You Need? Can You Drink Too Much?" WebMD. WebMD, 7 July 2009. Web. 06 July 2015.
- "Taking Aim at Belly Fat - Harvard Health." Harvard Health. Harvard Health Publication Harvard Medical School, 1 Aug. 2010. Web. 06 July 2015.