The Best Kept Secret to Losing Belly Fat? Eat Bananas!
There is no special diet or exercise that specifically targets belly fat. But the good news is that belly fat is the first kind of fat you tend to lose when you lose weight," says Michael Jensen, MD, a Mayo Clinic endocrinology specialist and obesity researcher. That’s because belly fat resides deep within your waistline and is more metabolically active that fat closer to the surface of your skin. OK, so what’s the big secret to losing belly fat?
Have a room temperature banana each morning for breakfast. Then, have a sensible lunch, dinner, and snacks, as long as you don’t eat after 8 p.m. Also, stay away from ice cream, dairy products, alcohol, or dessert after dinner. And only drink room-temperature water.
Oh, you can have one sweet snack mid-afternoon. So why bananas?
Scientists believe that bananas contain certain enzymes that help speed up digestion, and elimination, causing rapid weight loss. Another theory is that bananas are a type of resistant starch, which resists digestion, promotes fullness, and increases fat burning (potatoes are also a resistant stach). Also,, as a resistant starch, bananas may block the conversion of some carbs to fat.
Along with bananas as a possible way to lose that belly fat is eating whole grains. Researchers showed that participants who ate all whole grains (in addition to five servings of fruits and vegetables, three servings of low-fat dairy, and two servings of lean meat, fish, or poultry) lost more weight from the abdominal area than another group that ate the same diet, but with all refined grains.
"Eating a diet rich in whole grains while reducing refined carbohydrates changes the glucose and insulin response and makes it easier to mobilize fat stores," says study researcher Penny Kris-Etherton, PhD, RD, a distinguished professor of nutritional sciences at Penn State University. Whole grains also slow down the absorption of high glycemic carbs.
So there you have it. Bananas and multigrain breads. Not an awful way to lose weight. And of course, add moderate exercise to the mix and you might find your scale a more pleasant sight in the morning.