A number of specific foods that can stimulate a thinner abdomen by lessening inflammation, reducing bloat, and shutting down your fat storage genes are addressed in an article by David Zinczenko, author of the book, Zero Belly Diet. Zinczenko writes, in part:
“Zero Belly is based on the breakthrough science of ‘nutritional genetics…’ In early 2014, I put together a panel to test-drive the Zero Belly program, and I’ve been stunned by the results: The average person lost four inches off their waist — in just six weeks. The key to this program is a scientifically proven eating program that targets your fat genes — turning them to ‘off’ and making weight loss automatic. There’s no calorie counting, no deprivation. Zero Belly works in three ways:
First, it reduces bloating by cutting down on excess salt, dairy, and artificial sweeteners… Some of the test panelists lost up to three inches of bloat off their waist in just seven days.
Second, it heals your gut by feeding the ‘good’ microbes in your belly. A balanced gut reduces inflammation and helps to turn off your fat genes.
Third, it turbocharges your metabolism with protein, healthy fats, and quality fiber.”
Zinczenko recommends nine foods, or groups of foods including: plant-based smoothies high in protein, healthy fat, fiber and resveratrol; eggs (organic, pastured or free-range eggs are only recommended!); red fruits, olive oil and other healthy fats; high-fiber foods; nuts and seeds; meat (again organic, grass-fed meats are preferred); leafy greens and brightly-colored vegetables, along with plenty of fresh herbs and spices.
Zinczenko draws attention to the significance of restoring a healthy gut flora, as any imbalance can largely affect your weight. According to one hypothesis, your intestinal bacteria may actually be in charge of your appetite. Recent research revealed there was a connection between the foods you crave and the structure of the intestinal microbiota that depend on those nutrients for their survival. For example, microbes that feed on sugarcan stimulate a craving for sweet food.
Additional studies confirm that some intestinal bacteria can cause insulin resistance and weight gain by activating a mild chronic inflammation in your body. Food processing, sterilization and pasteurization, also have a damaging consequence on your microbiome. That’s why a diet rich in whole, unprocessed foods alongside cultured or fermented foods is most recommended.
Common Mistakes That Can Hamper Your Belly Fat Reduction
A plump waistline is most often the result of a diet abounding in processed foods (and hence processed fructose and other added sugars), as well as the habit of frequent eating. Anyway, according to a recent article,various other lifestyle aspects can influence the problem. So, along with improving your diet and taking up a fasting routine, tackling these issues may increase your odds of effectively removing the fat deposits surrounding your midriff:
- Lack of exercise: To optimize your weight loss effects, make sure to include some system of high intensity interval training (HIIT). Due to its beneficial impact on building muscle mass and enhancing muscle fiber quality, this brief intense training scheme increases muscle energy utilization and efficiency. Due to the fact that muscle tissue uses three to five times more energy than fat tissues, your metabolic level rises as you build up muscle mass, which stimulates your body to burn more calories, even during sleep. What is more, a number of studies have revealed that exercising in shorter bursts with rest periods in between is far more effective in burning fat than exercising uninterruptedly for an entire session.The perfect solution for successful fat reduction is a combination of intermittent fasting and HIIT, because the two combined practically push your body into burning off excess body fat.Daily walking is highly recommended. Ideally, 7,000 to 10,000 steps a day would suffice, over and above your regular exercise routine.This is not only useful for proper and healthy metabolism, but it’s also essential to fight the negative effects of excessive sitting—which as such increases your risk of insulin resistance and metabolic dysfunction, even if you exercise!
- Magnesium deficiency: Every organ in your body uses this mineral, especially your heart, muscles, and kidneys. Low magnesium levels could be the culprit of unexplained fatigue or weakness, abnormal heart rhythms, or even muscle spasms and eye twitches.Studies also reveal that lower blood sugar and insulin levels are found in people who consume larger amounts of magnesium.Seaweed and green leafy vegetables such as spinach or Swiss chard are known as great sources of magnesium,as well as some beans, nuts, and seeds, like pumpkin, sunflower, and sesame seeds.Avocados are also rich in magnesium. An excellent way to ensure you’re obtaining enough magnesium in your diet is to juice your vegetables.
- Diet soda consumption: Unlike many people believe, diet soda can in fact double your risk of obesity compared to drinking none, and studies prove that diet soda raises the possibility of weight gain to a higher level than regular soda. If you seriously set yourself for weight loss, cut off all soft drinks, including artificially sweetened ones, and concentrate on pure filtered water.
- Beer and alcohol consumption: All kinds of alcohol are likely to incur weight gain, so think about reducing the amount of soft drinks you consume weekly. Beer involves an additional risk of increasing your uric acid levels, which activates chronic inflammation.
- Stress: Chronic stress retains elevated stress hormone levels, which hampers with your weight loss struggle, so make sure you include some stress-relieving activities. Find out how to successfully reduce stress, so that you can stabilize your cortisol levels, lower your blood pressure, and improve your overall health.
It’s crucial to understand that stress management isn’t something you leave for the weekend—it requires a daily practice, because stress is an integral part of your life. Various stress-reducing techniques proved successful in tackling stress – exercise, yoga, meditation, mindfulness training, spending time in nature, music, and EFT (emotional freedom techniques), the last being a very efficient method of energy psychology that helps “reprogram” your rooted stress responses.
The Final Step: Exercises Aimed at Your Abs
You shouldn’t neglect abdominal exercises simply because they won’t lead to a leaner waistline. The benefit from these workouts is enormous – you make your spine and body less susceptible to injury and you achieve greater balance and stability by strengthening your abdominal muscles as these provide the basis for movement of your entire body as well as protect and support your back. Your optimal body movement depends on having a strong abdominal wall which becomes more and more significant with age.
A strong abdominal wall implies the perfect six-pack look you achieve once you lose enough subcutaneous fat. A combination of different stabilization, functional, and traditional exercises should be considered in order to successfully train the core muscles:
- Traditional exercises, like a standard crunch with rotation or a standing rotation with a light hand weight;
- Functional exercises, together with work on a stability ball;
- Stabilizing exercises, like lying on the floor and drawing your belly back toward your spine and maintaining that position while breathing deeply;
- Extension exercises, such as lying on your stomach with your arms stretched above your head, then lifting both arms and both legs, at the same time, off the floor. (Hold for a count of 5, or 5 breaths, and slowly return to the floor!)
Almost all types of yoga and Pilates include popular exercise programs that target your core muscles and these are widely available. In addition, push-ups are just another exercise you might not have thought of.As long as you do these correctly push-ups will help you obtain a stronger upper body, along with training your abdominals. Watch Darin Steen’s demonstration of the proper form below, but also there is a summary of the key points for you to remember:
- Keep your body firm and perfectly straight
- Keep your elbows at a 45-degree angle from your sides
- Breathe in as you go down
- Lower your body all the way down, letting your chest bone gently touch the floor
- Breathe out as you go up
If you’re aiming at rock-hard abs, keep in mind that proper nutrition is the first step to take, preferably combined with intermittent fasting and high intensity exercises. In addition, an inclusive lifestyle and fitness program that deals with issues such as stress, sleep, certain dietary insufficiencies, and targeted abdominal exercises, will also be extremely beneficial for this.