Lose Belly Fat With These 10+ Super Foods
If you feel like you’re making smart moves to lose weight but still aren’t seeing the scale prove you right, it may be because your diet contains sneaky foods that lead to bloating, water-retention (ahem, salt!), and a higher calorie intake. These quick swaps will keep you fuller longer, all while working their nutrient-powered magic.
1. Potatoes : Baked potatoes (yes — white potatoes!) are an excellent source of potassium, which can help beat bloat and counterbalance sodium. Since they’ve got filling fiber, spuds also help you stay fuller, longer. Avoid the deeper-fryer, though. Potatoes are a nutrient-dense food as long as they’re not served the French-fry way.
2. Seeds : Mineral-packed seeds — especially sunflower and pumpkin — provide lots of immune-boosting zinc and seriously fill you up. The hearty combo of plant-based protein and fiber can stave off hunger pangs later on.
3. Oats : Probiotics introduce useful bacterial to your system, but the prebiotics in oats feed the good bacteria already living there, helping it proliferate.
4. Nuts: Almonds, peanuts, walnuts, pistachios — at GH, we’re nuts about nuts! People who snack on nuts may have lower abdominal fat than those who munch on carb-based treats, according to a 2015 study in the Journal of the American Heart Association. Nuts are rich in monounsaturated fats, a heart-healthy (and more satisfying) pick than their grain-based counterparts.
5. Berries : Berries are packed with fiber (up to 9 grams a cup!) and antioxidants but contain less sugar than most fruits. That combo makes them a satisfying and healthy choice.
6. Olive Oil : Plant-based oils like extra-virgin olive oil create that “full” feeling and help you slim down overall. Skip battered foods deep-fried in oil, though! Fried snacks are associated with weight gain, so you’re better off enjoying them only once in awhile.
7. Eggs : High-protein breakfasts, especially ones that include eggs, have been linked to weight loss, reducing belly fat in the process. Add eggs to salads, stir-frys, and sautés, or pair them with 100% whole-grain toast and veggies for a hearty breakfast.
8. Beans and Lentils : Pulses — the dry edible seeds of beans, lentils, chickpeas and peas — are everywhere these days, and we couldn’t be happier about it. They’re filled with fiber and plant-based protein, plus minerals and B-vitamins. Overall, pulses reduce bloat by aiding your nervous and muscular systems, helping you build lean body mass.
9. Fish : It doesn’t get any better than fish when it comes to healthy protein, especially salmon, tuna, and sardines. They’re filled with important omega-3s and lean protein, helping you fill up and curb cravings
10. Dairy : Add a cup of low-fat milk, a part-skim mozzarella stick, or a half cup of low-sodium cottage cheese to breakfast, and you may have a belly-busting win. While lots of research links calcium with lower body weights, results from a 2014 study suggest that calcium-containing foods may reduce waist circumference in those genetically-predisposed to carrying weight in their midsection.
11. Avocados : Good news for lovers of this fruit (yes, it’s a fruit!): A 2013 study linked regular avocado-eaters to lower waist circumference and BMI. What’s more, the monounsaturated fats are heart-healthy and filling, reducing the urge to graze on processed foods later on.
12 Bananas : Filled with potassium and magnesium, bananas offset the bloat caused salty processed foods and pack in plant-based prebiotics, “feeding” your good bacteria. Snack on one a day with a tablespoon of nut butter, or slice it into your morning cereal.