One of the most common questions I get asked is: How can I get a flatter tummy?
If you are waiting for me to post some of my favourite abdominal exercises to help tone your tummy, then you’ll be waiting a long time. That’s because you can do all the sit-ups and crunches you want, but if your diet isn’t clean, you won’t see those abs you’ve been working for.
That being said, there are some foods that do increase puffiness around our bellies which make us appear heavier than we are. Here are the top four foods to avoid before heading to the beach this summer:
1. Cruciferous Vegetables
Broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, and kale are the top 4 belly bloat offenders thanks to their high fiber content. I’m not suggesting you eliminate these from your diet, but if you are eating them before a party of slipping into a bathing suit, try to stick to a very small portion.
2. Salty Processed Foods
Chips, deli meat, canned soup…what do these things have in common? They are all “processed” and not whole foods, meaning they probably contain a LOT of added salt. Eating foods high in sodium causes you to retain water and therefore causing more belly bloat. Steer clear of these “foods” as much as possible.
3. Soda, a.k.a. Pop
You know the fizzy bubbles in soda? When you swallow soda, you are swallowing tiny little bubbles of air which then find their way to your stomach, causing a temporary muffin top. Of course I recommend staying away from soda PERIOD!! Be sure to stay away from anything carbonated if you don’t want to develop the dreaded “gas baby!”
4. Artificial Sweeteners
Generally, your body does not respond well to anything that isn’t a whole food. Diet foods that say “fat-free” and “sugar-free” are usually loaded with unwanted chemicals that can leave you feeling puffy. Avoid foods with a long list of ingredients that you can’t even pronounce. Stick with the real thing (it tastes better anyway!) As long as you are consuming them in moderation as part of a healthy diet, it should’t affect your waistline.