Now I know what you’re thinking-foods to help you get thin or get rid of that dreaded bloat? Surely that’s a bit of a contradiction in terms, right? Wrong! Although it’s true that in order to get the flat, washboard stomach of your dreams you may have to change your diet, you don’t have to starve yourself and eat nothing but a small celery stick three times a day. In fact, there are some foods out there that will actually help you on your way to a flat stomach and banish the belly bloat.
Eating less is a good way to lose weight-however starving your body will only make it store fat more efficiently. Your best bet is to eat a varied diet (a vegetarian or vegan diet is the absolute best way to a trim, toned physique), and exercise well and include some of the following flat stomach foods to bring out the body of your dreams. These foods not only give your body the nutrients and vitamins that it needs for health but many also have metabolism boosting properties that can really help in the battle against the bulge.
Studies have shown that those who eat almonds on a daily basis stand more chance of shaving off the inches as almonds are high in protein and fibre-the fibre will make you feel fuller for longer and stops you reaching for sugary snacks! Raw jungle peanuts are another good fat buster, being high in monounsaturated fats (this is the healthy kind of fat) which have been discovered to be better for weight loss than a carbohydrate-rich diet.
A wonderful fat fighting food, garlic will not only boost your immune system but it also detoxifies the body, reduces fat stored in the liver and lessens bloating.
This tasty root has been shown to reduce hunger pangs and will give your metabolism a boost.
Cinnamon will help to stimulate insulin production, therefore preventing blood sugar levels soaring. It also encourages your fat cells to convert to energy, rather than storing excess energy from food as fat.
This is an all round great grain. It contains fiber, B vitamins, complex carbohydrates and protein, and as such will help to beat your hunger pangs, boost your metabolism and reduce fat stored around the tummy. Other good flat stomach grains include amaranth and buckwheat.
As well as being fantastically good for you, leafy green vegetables such as Kale, Spring Greens (and most other dark green veg) are packed with fibre to help you feel fuller, and will boost your metabolism.
• Oat Groats
A bowl of oat groats in place of sugary cereal will work wonders in the fight against flab, as it is high in fiber and slow release carbohydrates, regulating your blood sugar and ensuring that you don’t get that mid morning slump and reach for sweet things.
• Green Tea
There’s nothing like a cup of tea, is there? But if you swap your sugar and dairy laden builder’s cuppa for a cup of green tea you will be doing your body-and your weight loss regime-a massive favor. Green tea contains antioxidants that will flush toxins out of your body and reduce bloating of the stomach, and it will also give your metabolism a bit of a kick. (if you are caffeine sensitive, skip this)
Sea vegetables, and Kelp in particular, contain Iodine which is essential for maintaining a healthy thyroid. The thyroid regulates your metabolic rate, so it’s good to ensure it is as happy as possible! Kelp also contains minerals that have been shown to reduce belly fat in particular, and which also help prevent bloat.
Members of the Allium family (leeks, onions, spring onions and the like) contain a compound called Manganese, which has been shown to reduce bloating. Manganese also has the added bonus of being able to reduce the mood swings and cramps that some women suffer.
Many fruits are great at helping you beat the bulge-they are packed with fiber, which helps you to feel full and also cleans out the intestine. Apples contain Pectin, which is a form of fibre and will help you to feel more satisfied.
• Pro and PreBiotics
These are compounds that can help to balance the healthy bacteria and intestinal flora in your gut, making your digestive system work more efficiently. Pro and prebiotics can also help to reduce bloating, helping you towards a flatter stomach.
Although it is not a food, water deserves to be included in this list as it will work wonders on helping your stomach become flatter. Often when we feel “hunger” it is because we are actually thirsty-drinking 2 litres or more of water a day will stop you reaching for the snacks. Adding lemon will help with bloating and balancing the PH levels in your body!
So, as you can see there is a huge variety of delicious food out there that can help you towards a flatter stomach. You don’t need to change your ways entirely, just switch to the healthy alternatives from the unhealthy snacks and you will be well on your way to the flat stomach of your dreams.