What Science Says About The Best Foods For Losing Belly Fat – Eat This, Not That

Because of the food culture and the companies trying to sell their products, “belly fat loss” has been promoted in extremely unhealthy, unsustainable, and sometimes dangerous ways. These fad diets and weight loss products can harm people both physically and mentally.

Flat belly teas are some of the clearest examples of this, marketing themselves as an aid to promoting weight loss and are often made with natural laxatives that can cause problems with the gastrointestinal lining.

This is not only potentially harmful, but also misleading. Belly fat diets can help you get rid of bloating or shed a few pounds, but these results are temporary and never really solve the root problem.

So are there healthy ways to lose belly fat and keep it off while still giving your body the nutrients and care it needs? And what does the science actually say about belly fat loss and how it relates to your diet?

Read on and for more on healthy eating, check out The 5 Best Eating Habits for Your Blood Sugar.

The different types of belly fat

Not all types of fat in our bodies are created equal and do not pose the same potential health risks. Subcutaneous fat is the fat that lies just under our skin and outside of our abdominal wall. According to Harvard Health, subcutaneous fat makes up about 90% of our body fat.

Visceral fat makes up the other 10% of body fat, and experts warn that this type of fat should be monitored. This is because visceral fat resides under our abdominal wall and around our abdominal organs. Too much of this type of fat has been linked to heart disease and other serious illnesses.

Unfortunately, there is no “quick fix” for visceral fat. However, research suggests that a healthy diet and sustained weight loss can help you shed this type of belly fat.

A balanced, nutritious diet is the best choice

healthy food

While many people are looking for this miracle solution to losing belly fat, there isn’t one. This is because while our culture has marketed the ability to target belly fat with the right foods and exercise, it’s more about your overall weight management. And researchers have found that losing weight and maintaining weight loss through a balanced diet and regular exercise can also help keep visceral fat at healthy levels.

Harvard Health states that eating lots of fiber and complex carbohydrates like whole grains, vegetables, and protein sources like lean meat and legumes can contribute to overall weight loss. They also suggest limiting your intake of added sugars and refined carbohydrates, as these can contribute to weight gain and therefore more belly fat.

It’s not just about your diet, however

Diet is certainly one of the most important factors in losing weight. In a study published in BMC Public Health, participants who lost weight through diet and exercise actually did not have as much of a difference in visceral fat loss as the participants who lost weight through diet alone. However, the exercise and diet group saw a greater change in subcutaneous fat.

Exercise is still an important aspect of losing weight, as well as other areas of life. Harvard lists five ways to fight visceral fat: exercise, diet, reducing stress, avoiding tobacco, and getting enough sleep.

A recent study Mayo Clinic found that lack of sleep was actually associated with more visceral fat. In other words, make sure you get enough rest each night.

take that away

Even though our society constantly tells us that there are quick and easy ways to shed belly fat, science says it’s taking a more holistic approach, which involves losing body fat in a healthy, sustainable way by making helpful changes to our diet and way of life.

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