When trying to trim down, it’s easy to focus on all of the foods you can’t eat. The good news? There are tons of tasty foods you can add to your plate that help fend off unhealthy cravings and decrease belly fat, taking your dreaded muffin top down a notch.
Along with eating belly-busting foods, it also helps to step away from the salt shaker and get your stress levels under control, which can sabotage your efforts to eat healthfully. “High levels of sodium cause excess fluid retention, which is when your body holds on to too much liquid, making you look puffy all over,” says Keri Glassman, author of “The New You and Improved Diet: 8 Rules to Lose Weight and Change Your Life Forever”. “Even if you’re eating healthy, you may still be getting added salt from foods you wouldn’t think of, like cottage cheese and olives.”
So always check labels for sodium content. And check in with yourself. “Paying attention to stress is critical to overall health, including a flat belly,” says Glassman. “The more stress you have, the less able you are to make empowered food choices and the more cortisol you have raging through your system. Cortisol causes food cravings. Studies have shown that overweight people gain even more weight with more stress.”
Feeling tense? Glassman recommends this quick and simple stress-buster: Take an eight-count breath—inhale for eight counts and exhale for eight counts. Repeat for eight minutes.
To learn what foods will shrink your muffin top, check out the slideshow above!