Health Tips

From tips on how to lose weight effectively to ways to combat boredom eating, this collection of informative articles covers a wide range of health topics that matter to real people, like you.

The 5 Foods You Should Eat for a Flat Belly

A flat belly exists beyond the presence of fat. Foods that cause abdominal bloating and distress may have you feeling groggy and unconfident. Burn belly fat and beat belly bloat with these five foods for a flat belly.


In general, belly fat occurs when too much fat is stored in the abdominal area following poor diet and inadequate exercise. Furthermore, a flat belly exists beyond the presence of fat. Foods that cause abdominal bloating and distress may have you feeling groggy and unconfident. Burn belly fat and beat belly bloat with these five foods for a flat belly.

Foods to Avoid


Stripping gluten-containing foods out of the diet is necessary for individuals with Celiac disease or a gluten sensitivity. In the presence of gluten, individuals with these conditions experience bloat and discomfort. Chronic intake can contribute to malabsorption and nutritional deficiencies. It is important to note avoiding gluten is unnecessary, and maybe even harmful, in the absence of Celiac disease and sensitivity.


Dairy products should be avoided in those with lactose intolerance. Lactase, the enzyme that breaks down lactose (the natural sugar found in milk and other dairy products), is absent in some individuals. The deficiency causes dairy products to become indigestible following its intake and cascades unpleasant symptoms in the belly. Like described with gluten, avoiding dairy products is often unwarranted if undiagnosed with lactose intolerance.

Cruciferous Vegetables

These veggies certainly do not need to be totally avoided. Instead, their consumption should be moderated. Too much can result in unpleasant gas and bloat. However, some individuals may feel their effects more than others so stay in tune with how your body reacts. Some cruciferous vegetables include cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, and brussels sprouts.


Our bodies actually need salt. However, the general U.S. population eats too much of it. Salt overload may result in bloat, as sodium makes the body retain water. To reduce its intake, choose fresh over prepackaged, stray away from the salt shaker, and pay attention to nutrient and ingredient labels.

Trans Fat

The body actually does not fat, just those "healthy" fats and in moderation. However, trans fat should be limited to less than one percent of total daily calories or completely avoided. Trans fat can be identified on a nutrition label or found as associated words like "hydrogenation" and "hydrogenated oils." In 2018, trans fat is declared to be out of the food system. Until then, trans fats can be found in a wide-variety of foods such as pastries, chips, and margarine.

"Sugar-Free" Foods

Individuals react differently to these sort of foods. The presence of sugar alcohols may result in gas and diarrhea. Furthermore, "sugar-free" foods often contain more fat to compensate for the sugar subtraction.

5 Flat Belly Foods


The consumption of specifically fatty fish provides ample amounts of protein and omega-3 fatty acids. Foods high in protein keeps the body fuller for longer at a generally low calorie cost. The omega-3 fatty acids may actually have fat burning benefits. Other notable omega-3 sources are walnuts, flaxseed, and vegetable oils.


As once said "An apple a day, keeps the doctor away." Furthermore, an apple a day may keep the belly bulge away. Apples are rich in nutrients and fiber all while being low in calories. Be sure to eat the apple peel, as it is high in insoluble fiber.


Oats and oatmeal is an excellent fiber source. A diet high in fiber contributes to good gut health by facilitating bowel movement. Regular bowel patterns help reduce unpleasant gastrointestinal symptoms such as bloat and constipation, leaving the belly feeling flatter.


Potassium-rich foods can help counteract water retention from excess sodium. Potassium has a mild diuretic effect that may reduce and ease bloating. Potatoes, carrots, white beans, and apricots are additional food sources rich in potassium.


Yogurt is an excellent source of probiotics, healthful bacteria that can balance harmful bacteria in the gut. Research has shown that probiotics relieve constipation and bloat by improving intestinal motility.

Written By Sarah Asay, RDN. Published on April 28, 2016. Updated on May 19, 2016.


Follow @bistroMD

Start Your Diet Today!

Reality Check - Your Free Diet Analysis

Simply answer a few questions so we can figure out your weight loss goals and provide solutions for a lighter, healthier you. Our weight loss meal plans are designed to help real people achieve real and lasting success.

as seen on...   
Dr Phil
Lifetime Network
The Biggest Loser
The Doctors