Want to lose your gut? Don’t we all. Whether that unflattering flab around your midsection discourages you from flaunting your bod at the beach or just wearing that expensive pair of designer jeans on casual Fridays, we’ve all been there. Flaunting a muffin top—even if you’re not eating one for breakfast—is something that’s not easy to come to terms with, but can easily be banished with the help of these specific fat-incinerating foods.
1. Black Beans
The good gut bugs that thrive in your stomach require food to live, and one of their go-to picks are black beans! Gut bacteria munch on these beans’ soluble fiber and then transform it into butyrate, a chemical that’s been shown to increase calorie burning in mice. Every half a cup of black beans has over eight grams of satiating fiber, which is nearly twice as much as an apple boasts!
Wild-caught salmon is brimming with omega-3 fatty acids, which are notorious for squashing inflammation and helping you zap unwanted belly flab. In fact, these healthy fats fight inflammation by increasing adiponectin levels, a hormone that boosts metabolism and burns fat. Stock up on this pink fish, as it’s rich in both EPA and DHA, the two active forms of omega-3s.
Creamy avocados are full of monounsaturated fats that dim your appetite and prevent the accumulation of belly fat. In fact, a study published in The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology tracked 90,257 people for several years and discovered that participants who tried to eat a low-fat diet had the same risk of being overweight as those who ate whatever they wished! Consider this fast fact another reason to bite into avocado toast.
4. Miso Paste
Looking to blast belly fat? Well first, you must make sure you’re eating foods that support a balanced gut microbiome—like miso paste (yup, the stuff miso soup is made with). Made by fermenting soybeans with salt and koji, miso paste teeming with gut-healthy bacteria that can help stimulate the digestive system, strengthen your immune system, and torch belly fat.
5. Sweet Potatoes
Carotenoids, plant-derived antioxidants that stabilize blood sugar levels and lower insulin resistance (therefore preventing calories from converting into belly fat) are generously present in sweet potatoes. For a quick and easy side or snack, pop a whole tater into the oven, bake on high until soft, and enjoy alongside your dinner or on its own.
Forget counting calories on your quest to fight fat, and shift your focus onto protein instead. Since muscle steals the fat cells around your abdominals to burn for energy, maintaining those gains is a great way to score washboard abs. Just one large egg contains about 78 calories and a solid six grams of protein.
Oats contain a type of hard-to-find soluble fiber called beta-glucans, which forms a gel in your small intestine, lowering blood cholesterol levels, boosting the immune system, increasing satiety, and regulating blood glucose levels. When you feel fuller for longer, there’s less of an opportunity to gorge on unhealthy snacks or extra calories that could make you put on belly fat.
These reddish fruits can give your fat genes the red light. How so? Plums contain phenolic compounds called flavonoids, which lend the fruit its deep color as well as its ability to fight fat. Plums also are a great source of pectin, a gelatin-like type of fiber which animal studies have found to reduce liver fat (belly fat) and block the amount of fat cells can absorb.