Image by: Daniella Segura
By MacKenzie Nelson-Greene
Ladies, let’s face it; belly fat is one of the most difficult things to get rid of when we exercise. While a lot of belly fat can be caused by stress, there are other factors that you may not be thinking of when it comes to the extra flab around your waist.
Did you know that a lot of belly fat and bloating can be caused by inflammation? Well, it’s true, and the good thing about it is the fact that there are ways of reducing that inflammation with a proper diet.
So, if you are denying your gluten sensitivity, or you just deal with inflammation on a daily or monthly basis, check out these five foods that can help you reduce inflammation and help you flatten your belly faster.
Basically any fatty fish that is high in Omega-3 oils can actually help you reduce your belly flab by alleviating your inflammation.
According to health.com, “To get the benefits, however, you need to eat fish several times a week, and it should be cooked in healthy ways.”
So, make fish a staple in your diet. Having steamed salmon and salad for lunch three times a week can help you out considerably if you suffer from inflamed intestines, or you have issues with gluten sensitivities.
If you aren’t a big fan of salmon, choose another fish that is high in Omega-3 oils. This will really help you reduce inflammation and feel better in no time!
#2) Spinach & Kale
Spinach, kale, and any dark, leafy greens can reduce inflammation in your abdomen. Health.com adds, “Studies have suggested that vitamin E may play a key role in protecting the body from pro-inflammatory molecules called cytokines—and one of the best sources of this vitamin is dark green veggies, such as spinach, kale, broccoli, and collard greens.”
So, if you are having your fish and salad three times a week, build your salad from the hearty greens and add some broccoli to it. This will help you reduce inflammation and prevent it!
They actually currently sell bags of salad mixes made of the super greens kale, spinach, and collard greens. These salads aren’t only tasty, they have the texture that you need to feel satisfied! Additionally, they are excellent with any kind of dressing from a vinaigrette to a creamy dressing, or you can have them without dressing and still feel satisfied!
If you’re a nut lover like I am, you are going to love this next suggestion! Most nuts, especially almonds, can really help you reduce the inflammation that leads to an enlarged waistline. As an added bonus, these nuts can actually help your digestive system.
According to health.com, “All nuts, though, are packed with antioxidants, which can help your body fight off and repair the damage caused by inflammation.”
If you’re not a fan of eating whole nuts, try adding almond meal to your next protein shake. This is a great way to get all of the nutrients from almonds without having to chew on them for hours.
Add some slivered almonds to your next salad to give it an extra layer of texture and taste! This is a great way to get all of the foods with anti-inflammatory properties you need in your diet!
If almonds aren’t your thing, find a nut that you enjoy. Peanuts and cashews are a great way to get the anti-inflammatory properties you need! The next time you’re at a party or watching TV, reach for nuts instead of chips! Your tummy will thank you for it later!
Maybe you think the thought of soy isn’t very appetizing. However, soy comes in so many forms, that you are bound to find one that you will enjoy. The best part? Soy contains powerful essential vitamins that can reduce inflammation.
“Avoid heavily-processed soy whenever possible, which may not include the same benefits and is usually paired with additives and preservatives.”
The next time you’re at the grocery store, head over to the frozen vegetable section, and scoop up a couple of bags of edamame. Heat the edamame, top with some olive oil and salt, and enjoy.
If whole soy beans aren’t your thing, start incorporating soy milk into your diet. This will help you bring in the powerful protein of soy into your diet as well as the anti-inflammatory properties that soy has.
#5) Olive Oil
Olive oil is a wonderful thing. We use it in many of our everyday recipes, and it is helpful for those of us dieting. Did you know it can help you reduce inflammation as well?
Yes, olive oil has healing powers! So, make your own vinaigrette with olive oil and a little bit of balsamic vinegar. Use this to top off that leafy green salad and salmon lunch you are going to have!
Not a fan of balsamic? That’s fine too! You can always top off your favorite dishes with a few drops of olive oil. I love putting a little bit of olive oil on my whole grain pasta before I eat it. The oil really brings out the flavors!
There are many foods with anti-inflammatory properties, and for those of us who experience swelling of the abdomen or cramping issues, these five foods can really help! Additionally, those who have minor sensitivities to gluten can benefit from eating these foods. Not only will they help you slim down your waistline faster, they will help you feel better throughout the day! What is your favorite food with anti-inflammatory properties? Please share with us in the comments below!