Adding monounsaturated fat to meals to decrease waist size is a concept explored by Liz Vaccariello and Cynthia Sass, editor-in-chief and nutrition director at Prevention Magazine. Their book “Flat Belly Diet” examines how integrating certain foods into your diet can streamline your waist. According to the book, the trick to fighting belly fat is to add monounsaturated fat, also known as MUFA, to each meal. These plant-based fats target belly fat and promote fullness.
This green fruit contains MUFA in addition to 20 essential nutrients. Avocados are cholesterol-free and contain fiber, potassium, folate, vitamin K, vitamin E, vitamin C, vitamin B6, magnesium and lutein. There are three grams of MUFA in one serving of avocado. Fight belly fat by adding avocado to soups and salads. Spice up your diet by stirring together one mashed avocado, lime juice and salt and pepper. Use this mixture instead of mayo on sandwiches or veggie burgers. The recommended serving size is 1/5 of a medium-sized avocado.
Olives are a good source of belly-fat fighting MUFA. In addition to MUFA, olives contain vitamin E, amino acids and fiber. Add olives to a salad or use them as a side dish. The recommended serving is three olives. Cook with olive oil to integrate it into your diet. Make olive oil-based salad dressing. Mix together olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper and lemon juice. In addition to fighting belly fat, olives reduce inflammation and protect against free radicals. One serving of olive oil equals two tbsp.
Nuts and Seeds
“Flat Belly Diet” lists almonds, peanuts, pistachios, walnuts, hazelnuts, pecans and pine nuts as good sources of MUFA. Sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds are other options. One serving of seeds or nuts is equal to two tbsp. Throw seeds or nuts into a smoothie or on top of a salad. Spread peanut butter on a piece of whole-grain bread. Chop nuts and add them to rice or pudding. Sprinkle nuts onto cereal or oatmeal.
Dark chocolate contains antioxidants, flavonoids and MUFA. One serving of dark chocolate is equal to 1/4 cup. For a healthy dose of dark chocolate, simply eat it plain. You can also melt it and dip strawberries, pineapple or apples for an added benefit. Eat a handful of semisweet or dark chocolate chips mixed with almonds and walnuts for a healthy belly-fat fighting snack.