“Bikini season” may be a few months away, but who doesn’t want a flat stomach all year long? Unfortunately, belly fat is some of the most stubborn fat around. But wait! It’s not the time to throw in the (beach) towel. We are sharing some of the biggest contributors to belly fat, so you can get rid of that tummy flab, ASAP. Knowledge is power! By knowing which foods to avoid, you have already begun to fight the Battle of the Bulge. Read on to find out the top offenders that are keeping you from a flat stomach. Say “Adios” to puffiness, bloating, and extra weight in the midsection. These belly busters don’t stand a chance!
- Always avoid the fried foods that at least double the calories of the non-fried varieties. Make these oven-roasted Sweet Potato French Fries when the fry craving kicks in, and your tummy will thank you!
- Carbonated sodas cause a lot of gas in the belly and bloating. The same goes for sipping through a straw and chewing gum for some people, as often a lot of air is swallowed and the stomach gets bloated.
- Biggies to avoid that really pack the pounds for our clients are dressings, cheese sauces, butter, cream sauces and full fat dairy products (Note: If you’re trying to conceive we recommend full-fat dairy products).
- Alcohol! It’s calorie dense and causes belly bloat. Alcohol also lowers inhibitions and increases hunger, often creating binge eating sessions and poor dietary choices after drinking, but it also adds a lot of calories at once from alcohol alone. This can really accumulate and lead to weight gain, allover, and often especially in the stomach. Save calories by mixing seltzer, club soda or diet sodas with alcohol or choose wine spritzers or light beer to save additional calories. Steer clear of mixed drinks since they are high in calories from both sugar and alcohol.
- Sugar and high fructose corn syrup. Too much of any sugar (glucose included) causes belly fat gain. Too much sugar means too many calories which contribute to weight gain (and a bigger midsection!). Sugar also creates bloat because it attracts water to help to dilute it (similarly to the way that salt does). The solution to flush out the sugar is to drink more water (or tea!).
- Salt—it creates major bloat. We talk a lot about this in our book, The Secret To Skinny: How Salt Makes You Fat. Not only does salt make you hungrier and thirstier and increases cravings, but it also makes your fat cells store more fat. This includes the fat on your belly. So the trick is to use spices and salt-free seasonings (including the spritz of a lemon and vinegars which are fabulous) to replace salt on all foods from fish to chicken to soups to desserts and sandwiches. Plus, if you eat a lot of salt, your body tries to keep its’ electrolytes in balance and it holds on to water to help dilute the salt, so you look bloated—and so does the waistline. Flush out all that bloating salt from your system by sipping on this Pomegranate Tangerine Detox Flusher . Buh-bye, puffy tummy!
Cutting out these serious belly busters will get you feeling bikini ready, all year long! Now that you know which foods aren’t so kind to the waistline, check out which foods will help you get that svelte stomach on our Flat Belly Foods list.