When it comes to creating incredible absHow to get rid of your muffin top. Read more ... », even the most effective workout programs3 Reasons Why You Should Workout at Home. Read more ... » can only bring you so far. That’s because you can’t get a flat, hard midsection without losing body fatHow to Reduce Body Fat Percentage. Read more ... ». No matter how much effort you put into creating a six-pack, no one’s going to see it if it’s covered by a layer of flab.
If you’re following the dietary guidelines of a BeachbodyBeachbody Black Friday Huge Holiday Savings. Read more ... » fitnessCIZE and Shakeology: Fun. Nutrition. Results.. Read more ... » program, you’ll automatically be eating the right foods to lose fat10 Easy Portion Control Tricks. Read more ... » as you get in shape. But the following seven principles can give you an extra edge, and will help ensure that the effort you’re putting into your abs will bring you the resultsWhen Will You See Results? Plus, Answers to More of Your Top Fitness Questions. Read more ... » you want.
1. Get plenty of proteinGot Milk? Try Chocolate Milk After Your Workout. Read more ... »
Eating enough lean protein promotes fatHow to get rid of back fat. Read more ... » loss and muscleSee How I Gained 20 Pounds of Lean Muscle with P90X. Read more ... » gain, the two most important elements for developing great abs. It also helps keep you from getting hungry while you’re eating right. You don’t have to gobble down 12-ounce steaks—just eat a normal portion of lean meat, fish, low-fat dairy, or vegetarian protein with every meal, and make sure your snacks9 Foods That Aren’t As Healthy As You Think. Read more ... » contain some protein, too. If you still have a hard time getting enough in your diet10 Things Everyone Has Thought About at Least Once During Yoga. Read more ... », a daily ShakeologyBrazil Butt Move: The Samba Tomato. Read more ... » shake can be a perfect addition.
By the way, protein is especially important in the morning, when a lot of people don’t get as much as they should. A protein-rich breakfast will help keep your blood sugar steady for hours, preventing the dips that can lead to cravings later in the day. (Try some low-fat chicken sausage, or an omelet with one whole egg and three egg whites, along with fruit or whole-grain toast.)
2.Reconsider your carbsHow To Build Muscles with Proper Nutrition. Read more ... ».
Despite the popularity of low-carbohydrate diets, the average American meal is still too high in sugar and fast-burning starches to bring body fat down to ab-baring levels. It’s time to say goodbye to sweetened sodaWhat Soda Can Do To Your Body in 30 Days. Read more ... », ditch the Doritos, and save the cake for your birthday. If your fitness plan calls for a sports drink before a long cardio workout, or a carb-and-protein recoveryWhat is a Recovery Workout?. Read more ... » drink after resistance training10 Ways to Avoid Injury When Resistance Training. Read more ... », that’s fine. But the rest of the time, stick with foods that are on the low end of the glycemic index (refer to GlycemicIndex.com for more information)—these foods burn more slowly, so they won’t spike your blood sugar and insulin levels.
3. Have fun with fiber.
Something about the word “fiber” just doesn’t sound appetizing. But high-fiber foods can actually be quite delicious: fresh berries and other fruits, salads loaded with colorful produce, your favorite steamed vegetables9 Foods That Aren’t As Healthy As You Think. Read more ... » or vegetable soup, stews or chili made with beans, chewy whole-grain breads and cereals…You get the picture. (These foods just happen to be loaded with nutrients3 Day Refresh and Shakeology: Break Bad Habits. See Success.. Read more ... » as well.) High-fiber foods keep you fuller with fewer caloriesHow Many Calories Should I Eat?. Read more ... », and they help keep your digestive system working at its best—a double-whammy for getting rid of belly bulge.
4. Enjoy some yogurt.
Probiotics, the healthful bacteria found in yogurt and other fermented foods, have been proven to help reduce belly fat6 Moves for a Six-Pack, An Isometric Core Workout from Tony Horton. Read more ... ». In a recent study in Finland, new mothers who took probiotic supplements averaged smaller waist circumferences—and lower body fatHow to Reduce Body Fat Percentage. Read more ... » in general—than those who didn’t take probiotic supplements. And while the topic is still controversial, studies have found that eating lots of calcium-rich dairy foods like yogurt may increase overall weight lossDon’t Make a New Year’s Resolution. Make a #REALsolution.. Read more ... ».
5. Don’t forget to eat.
Tempted to lower your daily calorie count by skipping meals? Don’t. Going hungry can raise your levels of the stress-related hormone cortisol, which research has found can increase belly fat even in otherwise thin women. And eating too infrequently can lower your metabolism and energy3 Day Refresh and Shakeology: Break Bad Habits. See Success.. Read more ... » levels, while increasing the chance that you’ll get too hungry and decide to chuck your meal plan37.5 lbs. in Four Months with 21 Day Fix. Read more ... » entirely. If you’re eating the right foods, regular meals and snacks will keep your body fueled while you’re working toward that strong core6 Moves for a Six-Pack, An Isometric Core Workout from Tony Horton. Read more ... ».
6. Drink more fluids. Hydration is important when you’re on a fitness plan, but drinking plenty of water has particular benefits for your midsection. It helps keep your stomach full, so you don’t overeat, and it helps flush out excess sodium to prevent belly bloatingHow to Get a Flatter Tummy Almost Instantly. Read more ... ». (Eating more potassium-rich foods, such as tomatoes and bananas, will also help in this area.) Plain ol’ H20 can’t be beat, but you can also switch it up with flavored waters, iced tea, and anything else you like to drink that isn’t full of sweeteners. How much do you need? The old rule of 8 glasses a day is a good start, but everyone is different: drink more if you’re exercising or it’s hot out, and drink less if you’re running to the bathroom every 5 minutes.
7. …With two exceptions.
It’s time to cut down on those mood-altering substances, coffee and alcohol. Too much caffeine raises your cortisol levels and can impair your sleep, which can lower the production of fitness-promoting hormones. Meanwhile, the proverbial “beer belly” isn’t just the result of extra calories—alcohol actually makes it more difficult for your body to metabolize carbs and fat. Booze also stimulates your appetite and lowers your inhibitions, which can lead to bingeing. The best road to flat absBrazil Butt Move: The Samba Tomato. Read more ... » is no alcohol at all, but if you really like a drink now and then, just have one at a time (and no more than a few a week), and stay away from higher-calorie beers and sugary mixed drinks
If you add these rules to your fitness plan, you’re sure to see faster improvements in your midsection. Of course, there’s an added bonus to eating this way: it’ll keep you healthier, too. That may not be as big an inducement as great abs, but we’re throwing it in for free.