A nutritional strategy that supports fat loss is the key to reduce belly fat in women. You should be eating foods that supply energy and raise your metabolism. By doing so, you are setting up your body for maximum fat loss.
Here are 5 eating tips for reducing belly fat in women…
1. Focus on wholesome, unprocessed foods.
Think of single ingredient foods: meat, fish, eggs, vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, legumes.
These foods do not need an ingredient label on them. They are much healthier than packaged foods that are low in fat, low in carb, fat free, carb free, sugar free, etc.
Eating natural, whole foods provides your body with proper nutrition and keeps you satisfied. This is the key to fighting hunger or cravings so you are able to reduce belly fat and stick to a healthy eating plan.
2. Minimise processed foods
Processed foods are often high in refined carbs, sugar, salt, fat, colouring, preservatives or other additives. These are packaged foods such as cookies, bread, chips, donuts, candies, ice-cream, cereals, fast foods, etc.
Processed foods can cause weight gain:
- by increasing cravings and driving you to eat more.
- by increasing calorie consumption since they are usually high in calories.
For some women, going cold turkey may backfire. Instead of giving up or cutting down, they could end up binging on junk food. If you are eating healthy foods 90% of the time, allowing yourself to eat whatever you want 10% of the time shouldn’t hurt your weight loss efforts. This can prevent you from feeling deprived so you can stick to a fat loss eating plan and reduce belly fat.
Gradually replace processed foods with healthier options. Have nuts or fruits instead of cookies, or yogurt instead of ice-cream.
3. Minimise liquid calories
Watch out for calories from drinks such as fruit juices, sodas, energy drinks, alcohol, teas, coffees and other sugar sweetened beverages. It is easy to over consume liquid calories and yet, fail to account for them.
Water is still the best for hydrating your body naturally. If that’s too plain for you, add a slice of lemon. Unsweetened green tea is another healthy drink with virtually no calorie.
Fresh coconut water is a natural alternative to sports or energy drinks for quenching thirst on a hot day or after a workout.
If you add sugar to your tea, coffee or other drinks, try reducing the amount you use over time. Stevia is an option for those who prefer natural sweetener. It is low in calories and does not spike your blood sugar levels.
4. Avoid artificial trans fats
Artificial trans fats are found in processed foods, baked foods, deep fried foods, fast foods and certain cooking oils. They are produced by adding hydrogen to liquid oils, resulting in solid fats such as shortening and margarine.
Trans fats are also known as hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils on ingredient labels. They are widely used in processed and baked foods such as bread, crackers, chips and cookies, to prolong their shelf life.
When eating out, avoid ordering deep fried foods. They are usually fried in partially hydrogenated oils (vegetable, canola and soy).
Man-made trans fats can increase the risks of heart disease and diabetes. They also increase bad cholesterol and promote inflammation in the body. In animal studies, trans fats have been found to cause weight gain and belly fat.
5. Avoid artificial sweeteners
Artificial sweeteners have been linked to weight gain. When you something sweet, your body expects to take in a lot of calories. Since artificial sweeteners provide “false” sweetness without much calories, the bodily system becomes confused. This causes you to eat more to satisfy the demand for calories.
Artificial sweeteners are commonly used in processed foods and drinks that are labeled ‘diet’, ‘no sugar’, ‘sugar free’ or ‘reduced sugar’.