(Last Updated on June 9, 2023)
Do you want to lose your belly? We all do. No wants to have hanging flabs around their midsection.
If you are looking to fit in your new pair of jeans during the summer or you just want to flaunt a better dad’s bod on the beach, you first need to understand the risks of belly fat.
Belly fat, known as visceral fat, poses a significant danger to your health because it surrounds internal organs and is metabolically active-this means that it behaves like an organ itself.
It produces inflammatory substances that interfere with your hormones and affect everything from appetite to weight to brain function and mood.
It is often linked with a heightened risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, cancer, liver disease, and stroke.
But all is not lost; it is possible to get rid of these belly fat with various powerful foods that burn belly fat fast and keep it off.
Read next: Best Diet Pills On The Market
What categories of foods help burn belly fat?
Do you find yourself thinking ‘from tomorrow I’m giving up carbs.’
Well, carbs are not the only culprits to your belly fat; you need to have a complete change in your diet.
There is no magic diet to burn belly fat; however, certain foods accelerate fat burn.
Here are types of belly fat burning-foods to pick at your next grocery visit.
Rich in soluble fiber
Research 1 shows that 10g of soluble fiber daily reduced visceral fat by 3.7 percent in 5 years.
Soluble fiber, especially from fruits and vegetables, was seen to reduce the accumulation of visceral fat.
Fiber slows down the absorption of food into the gut, preventing belly fat gain.
Besides, it is a potent appetite suppressant. Studies show that soluble fiber lowers levels of hunger hormones, especially ghrelin.
Fiber keeps insulin levels low; this is believed to shrink fat cells.
Potassium reduces bloat and cuts down water weight, which is associated with belly fat.
A 2008 study 2 showed that abdominal obesity is associated with potassium depletion.
Potassium helps to flush out excess fluids from the body, lowering the amount of belly swelling from water retention.
Besides, it boosts metabolism but indirectly. Potassium increases the absorption of nutrients that increase metabolism and help the body to process these nutrients.
For instance, potassium increases the absorption of metabolism-boosting minerals, including magnesium, iron, and calcium.
Proteins curb your appetite by almost 60 percent, preventing snacking between meals and lowering your calorie intake.
Besides, proteins increase your metabolism, thus, boosting your energy expenditure.
A study 3 published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition showed that protein intake was associated with a considerably reduced risk of belly fat gain over five years.
Inflammation fighting foods
Foods that lower inflammation are known to lower belly fat.
They suppress inflammation and may lead to a flatter belly.
Antioxidants are superfoods that fight inflammation linked to belly fat storage.
Besides, they improve blood flow, delivering more oxygen to muscles.
Probiotics are good bacteria that support healthy digestion and reduce bloat.
They are mainly found in fermented foods like kefir, yoghurt, some type of cheese, and kimchi, among others.
A 2013 study 4 showed that individuals with belly fat who took fermented milk for 12 weeks lost 8.2 to 8.5 percent of their belly fat.
Researchers 5 from Uppsala University found out that polyunsaturated fat prevents the accumulation of abdominal fat.
These fats have been seen to trigger genes in visceral fat, which are associated with improved sugar metabolism and reduced fat storage.
21 best belly fat burning foods
Ready to meet your new waistline?
Here is a list of the 21 most powerful foods that burn belly fat fast.
This popular and trendy fruit is arguably the healthiest fruit with 20 grams of monounsaturated fats.
Avocados are rich in monounsaturated fats that prevent blood sugar spikes that result in fat storage in your midsection.
Besides, avocados are hunger-squashers; they contain healthy fats and soluble fiber, which is filling and prevents you from snacking on high-calorie foods later.
Studies 6 show that avocados can shrink your belly.
They contain monounsaturated and oleic fatty acids that can lower abdominal fat by regulating the expression of specific fat genes.
Category: Monounsaturated fats and Fiber
Do you know that friend that does not snack between meals during the day, and is probably healthier?
They probably have eggs for breakfast.
Eggs are rich in proteins that curb appetite and increase satiety preventing overeating or snacking between meals.
Also, they boost metabolism, increasing fat burn.
A study 7 published in the international journal of obesity shows that individuals who ate an egg breakfast had a 34 percent reduction in waist circumference and 65 percent more weight loss compared to those who ate a bagel breakfast.
Both groups observed a low-calorie diet.
Category: Protein and Vitamins
3. Citrus fruits
Citrus fruits, including red blood oranges, lemons, grapefruits, and limes, are rich in fiber, potassium, and antioxidants.
Fiber increases satiety; potassium prevents bloat while antioxidants fight inflammation, which is linked to belly fat storage.
Oranges are particularly high in soluble fiber, which is known to lower cholesterol levels.
Besides, oranges and grapefruits are said to block the belly fat storage enzyme hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (HSD), which triggers the release of cortisol.
Cortisol signals the body to store fat.
Category: Fiber, Potassium, and Antioxidants
Salmon is high in protein, which controls appetite hormones, increases satiety, and boosts metabolism.
Besides, it contains omega-3 fats, particularly DHA, which has been seen to reduce belly fat.
Category: Polyunsaturated fatty acids and Proteins
Research shows a close relationship between deep colored vegetables and reduced visceral fat and the risk of type 2 diabetes.
Broccoli stands out due to its high levels of calcium – a mineral linked to fat loss, especially in the midsection.
Besides, it is rich in fiber, which curbs overeating and prevents blood sugar hikes.
6. Beans and Lentils
Beans and lentils are good sources of fiber, protein, and vitamins.
Fiber fights inflammation in the digestive system while protein keeps your hunger pangs at bay.
Research shows that beans and other legumes have been associated with loss of belly fat and optimal insulin levels.
Category: Proteins and Fiber
Recently referred to as the belly fat burning secret, turmeric contains curcumin, which attaches itself to fat cells, causing them to shrink.
It also supports healthy gut bacteria, which reduces digestive inflammation associated with belly fat gain.
Turmeric also has a thermogenic effect, which boosts your metabolism resulting in more fat burn.
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Category: Anti-inflammatory and Antioxidant
Keep away the muffin, snack on almonds.
A study 8 published in the Journal of the American Heart Association shows that not only do almonds reduce heart disease but also lower belly fat.
Almonds are rich in proteins, fiber, magnesium, and healthy fats, which lower hunger levels, increase satiety, and keep you full for longer.
Almonds will definitely watch your waistline.
Category: Fiber, Proteins, and Healthy Fats
Say ta-ta to your belly with raspberries for breakfast or as smoothies.
Raspberries are potent antioxidants that fight inflammation-induced obesity.
Besides, they have a high amount of fiber that increases satiety, regulates the body’s response to insulin, and reduces abdominal fat.
Category: Antioxidant and Fiber
Oatmeal contains a type of soluble fiber known as beta-glucan, which acts as a prebiotic to facilitate your guts probiotics to function optimally.
Also, it reduces metabolic syndrome, which is associated with belly fat.
Oatmeal absorbs water and keeps you fuller for longer and takes time to digest. This prevents overeating
Research shows that individuals who ate a whole grain oat cereal reduced their waist circumference compared to individuals who ate a low-fiber cereal.
11. Greek yoghurt
Yoghurt is a probiotic that supports a healthy gut and reduces bloat linked to belly fat.
It is rich in protein, which increases satiety, preventing you from overeating and triggers hormones that reduce your appetite. This may help reduce belly fat.
Besides, it is rich in calcium; several studies have associated calcium with reduced belly fat. Calcium also inhibits fat absorption and increases metabolism.
Spice up your salads with greek yoghurt.
Category: Probiotics, and Protein
12. Pumpkin seeds
Pumpkin seeds are an ideal snack if you have itchy-cookie fingers.
They are rich in fiber, which promotes a healthy digestive system and makes you fuller, preventing snacking between meals.
It also contains zinc, which facilitates fat burning and stimulates the release of testosterone, the hormone crucial in building muscles.
Category: Fiber and Protein
There is a war inside you; free radicals are wrecking your metabolism by damaging mitochondria.
Free radicals cause oxidative stress, which damages cells, resulting in reduced body functions.
But, antioxidants counteract the effects of free radicals.
Blueberries are antioxidants that reduce inflammation and change how the body stores and processes glucose.
Research shows that blueberries influence genes that control fat burning and storage, hence reducing abdominal fat.
This veggie is rich in antioxidants and fiber that fights bloat and supports optimal digestive health.
It is a prebiotic that optimizes a healthy balance of probiotics in the gut, reduces gas, and lowers water retention.
Also, asparagus is packed with proteins which keep your appetite at bay
This will definitely reduce your belly bulge.
Category: Antioxidant, and Fiber
15. Olive oil
Swap your cooking oil with extra virgin oil.
It is rich in healthy fats, which lower levels of fat-storing inflammation.
It contains polyphenol –oleocanthal, which prevents the synthesis of inflammation enzymes. This means less belly bulge.
Category: Healthy fats
Go tuna; it is the only fish with the highest amount of DHA.
Fish contains omega -3 fatty acids- EPA and DHA.
Studies show that DHA is 70 percent more effective in inhibiting fat genes and preventing fat cells from enlarging than EPA.
Besides, tuna contains proteins that curb your appetite and increase satiety.
This will definitely fight belly fat.
Category: Protein and Healthy fats
17. Green tea
Research 9 shows that individuals who drank green tea had reduced waist circumferences and lower BMIs.
Green tea contains catechins –antioxidants that boost your metabolism, promoting fat burn.
Kimchi is a fermented food rich in probiotics that support healthy digestion and lower cholesterol levels.
But, what makes this Korean dish a belly buster?
It contains capsaicin, which boosts metabolism and lowers your appetite keeping hunger pangs at bay.
Also, it has fiber, which keeps you fuller for longer and prevents snacking between meals.
Category: Probiotics, and Fiber
Forget that they say bananas are weight gainers. Consider them your new belly trimmers.
They are potent flat belly fruits, despite high calories.
They are rich in fiber, which suppresses appetite and inhibits the absorption of carbohydrates forcing the body to burn fat for fuel.
Besides, bananas contain potassium, which removes extra fluids from your digestive system; thus, getting rid of water weight.
Category: Potassium and Fiber
20. Coconut oil
Coconut oil might just give you that flat belly.
It contains MCTs (medium-chain triglycerides), which are burned as energy instead of being stored as fat.
Also, it is rich in lauric acid, which mainly targets and burns belly fat.
Category: Healthy Fats
Leafy veggies are probably the fastest ways to a flat tummy.
But what makes spinach stand out?
Spinach contains sulfoquinovose-a long-sugar chain molecule –which supports good bacteria in the digestive system.
These bacteria prevent inflammation and belly fat.
Category: Probiotics and Fiber
If you are serious about trimming your belly, get your diet in check.
Prioritize fiber-rich foods, proteins, antioxidants, potassium-rich foods, healthy fats, and probiotics.
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