Belly fat or more scientifically, central obesity, is the most dangerous for health. It wraps around our vital organs and plays havoc with our metabolism. It increases our risk of heart disease and diabetes, amongst others.
You may think that carrot sticks and salads are the only way to get rid of that tummy bulge. They will certainly help but even more so if you add a handful of nuts to your salad and douse it with olive oil. Eating foods high in healthy fats makes it easier to resist those ‘naughty’ foods – you know, the cakes, biscuits, choc bars, white bread jam sandwiches and fizzy drinks. Of course if you wanted to you could stuff these foods in as well and end up expanding your waistline even more. The idea is to add nuts and olive oil in so you can enjoy your moderately sized meals and not feel hungry until the next meal time.
So how much are we talking about? The studies used 30 grams or a small handful of plain, unsalted nuts a day and around a litre of olive oil a week.
Now before you rush out to buy a barrel of olive oil, remember that small changes are much better than drastic diets that you soon tire of. Lots of little changes soon add up to make a big difference.It works with writing novels (lots of small sessions of writing rather than the odd enormous effort) and it works with healthy eating and living.
To reduce belly fat, try these ideas.
* Sit less, move more (Harvard School of Public Health says that reducing sit time is just as important as increasing fit time.)
* Less screen time
* Add a few nuts to your lunch-box
* Sprinkle nuts on your salad or stir fry
* Make Swiss Muesli with chopped apple and almonds
* Try carrot salad – grated carrot mixed with chopped garlic, lemon juice and olive oil – A winner for people who don’t like carrot sticks!
* Roast vegetables – beetroot, carrot, zucchini in olive oil. Sprinkle with spices e.g. ras el hanout and toss with chickpeas (search Quinoa Roast Vege Salad recipe)
* Mix olive oil with either lemon juice or balsamic vinegar. Add some chopped garlic or a generous dollop of mustard and pour over salads or steamed green beans or asparagus.