1. SOFT DRINKS -Soft drinks are a major contributor to belly fat, thanks to their high content of empty calories and processed sugar like fructose.
The body struggles to burn fructose and other additives, especially around the waist, meaning high consumption will lead to significant belly fat over time.
Diet drinks should be avoided too, because they also contain high volumes of artificial sweeteners. Drink three litres of water a day to help shift belly fat instead.
2. MARGARINE – Margarine/ butter is filled with trans-fat and is found in unlikely products like crackers and microwave popcorn, so be sure to read ingredients carefully before tucking in.
3. PROCESSED BAKED TREATS -Baked treats like doughnuts, sweetened croissants and muffins are all bad news for belly fat.
Sugar increases inflammation which is the root cause of many autoimmune diseases like lupus and rheumatoid arthritis, as well heightening the risk of heart disease and stroke.
4. DAIRY PRODUCTS -While a certain amount of dairy is beneficial for general health, if you are experiencing bloating directly after eating it could be a sign of lactose intolerance, reducing your intake of cheese, yoghurt, milk and ice cream to trial the result.
A wide variety of dairy-free alternatives are available like almond milk, oat milk and cashew cheese.
5. FRIED CHICKEN – Fast food like fried chicken may be tasty while you’re eating it, but it quickly leaves you bloated and sluggish.
Deep fried food also contains scant minerals or vitamins, so opt for a healthy, home cooked meal packed with protein and green vegetables instead.
6. POTATO CHIPS – Snacks high in hydrogenated oils and trans-fat are known to increase cholesterol and the risk of heart disease, and also contribute to weight gain around the stomach.
Shun all forms of chips, even baked and low fat options, as most still contain a high number of calories which adds to belly fat.
7. WHITE FLOUR AND RICE – If you’re really serious about shifting belly fat, you’ll need to dramatically reduce your intake of white bread, flour, rice and pasta.
White carbs have already gone through numerous stages of refinement and processing, so stick to brown alternatives instead.
8. CEREALS -While cereal is a handy snack in moderation, most people unintentionally double the serving size. If you really want to keep cereal as part of your morning meal, weighing it out in a measuring cup and choosing a dairy-free milk to go with it.
9. REFINED SUGARS AND SWEETENERS -Finally, it almost goes without saying that refined sugar is one of the first things you need to ditch in order to shed belly fat.
Processed sugar increases insulin levels which promote the storage of fat, as well as weakening the immune system.