Belly fat is not pretty! As I get older, I notice I gain weight much more quickly around my mid-section than before. This is inconvenient: my closet does not have elastic waistlines and I am NOT going to buy more clothes to accommodate the bulge. Worse still, belly fat is a sign of potential health risks. According to the Mayo Clinic, extra pounds around the belly can lead to:
Type 2 diabetes
So there is much more than inconvenience at stake. I am exercising, eating organic foods, spoiling my skin rotten with my homemade skincare products, and now I want to take care of the muffin top that torments me with its persistence. I do have a great arsenal of yummy belly zappers at my disposal, however.
Belly Fat-Fighting Foods
My number one food for fighting my mod-section flab! With 10 grams of mono-sturated fats in half an avocado, blood sugar spikes can be a thing of the past. When blood sugar spikes, it’s telling your body to start storing fat around the tummy area. These fats also help the cancer-fighting properties in other foods to be absorbed. Eat a salad with avocados and there is a greater (15x) absorption rate of carotenoids (the cancer fighters) found in tomatoes, carrots, spinach etc.
The fruit packs 422 milligrams of potassium, a mineral that can help limit the amount of belly swelling sodium in your body.
3. Greek Yogurt
The best type of yoghurt for getting rid of belly fat is greek yoghurt. It is packed with bacteria (the good kind) which attack and defeat any bad bacteria that can cause bloating. It also has a fantastic combination of protein and carbs which keep a healthy balance of the hormone, insulin. If insulin levels get too high, your body starts to store calories as fat. Keeping insulin levels stable also helps to ward off type 2 diabetes. For many more benefits of Greek yoghurt read here.
I am a big fan of strawberries and so is my son, Button. We can eat them all day long! The great thing about that is these berries, along with other kinds are packed with antioxidants that can improve blood flow. This, in turn delivers more oxygen to muscles which means your cardio will be more effective at busting belly fat. Try mixing berries with Greek yoghurt for an amazing snack before a workout.
Fans of blueberries will be happy to know that there have been studies linking these little blue power-balls to reducing belly fat and fighting conditions such as diabetes. According to Science Daily,
“We found by looking at fat muscle tissue, that blueberry intake affected genes related to fat-burning and storage. Looking at muscle tissue, we saw altered genes related to glucose uptake.”
5. Green Tea
The Journal of Nutrition The study evaluated 132 obese adults. Each participant consumed the same daily calories and exercise. The control group consumed a caffeinated beverage while the study group consumed green tea with 625 milligrams of catechins, an antioxidant that is the main component of green tea. After twelve weeks the study group who had consumed green tea lost an average of 4.4 pounds compared with the control group whose average loss was 2 pounds. The green-tea sippers also has less abdominal fat!. It is recommended that three cups of green tea are taken daily to maximize benefits. The compound ECGC in the tea makes it easier to burn fat, according to Science Daily. Pass me the teapot!
oranges and red peppers are great sources of vitamin C. This powerful vitamin actually helps to eliminate belly fat when exercising. Don’t fall prey to unhealthy snacks when you can munch on pepper strips dipped in hummus or a tangerine.
7. Whole Grains
You can have your cake and eat it! Well, almost. Fiber found in oatmeal. brown rice, quinoa etc. actually helps regulate the body’s insulin and uses up calories as your body breaks down and absorbs them. You can lose weight just by digesting! Look for whole grains with at least 4 grams of fiber.
With such a wide variety of foods to munch on, belly fat can become a thing of the past. As always, exercise should remain a part of your weekly routine and proteins from meat and fish are important.
Look out for some great recipe ideas following my goal to be more belly-fat conscious. I’m really planning on shedding a few pounds and can’t believe my luck that so many of the foods I need to eat are my favorites anyway. Happy me!