What Is The Flat Belly Diet?
The Flat Belly Diet is based on a book by the diet's creators, former Prevention magazine editor Liz Vaccariello and Cynthia Sass, MPH, RD. It’s based on a theory that monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs) – the type of fats you get from plant sources such as nuts, seeds, olive oil, and avocados -- can reduce belly fat, promote fullness, and prevent overeating.
The diet is primarily geared toward women, but there is a men’s version that allows for more calories.
What Can You Eat on The Flat Belly Diet?
The Flat Belly Diet resembles a Mediterranean diet approach that focuses on:
- Whole grains
- Olive oil
There are two phases of the diet. The first four days of the diet are targeted at reducing bloating and eating about 1,200 calories each day. Dieters consume four 300-calorie meals with a strict food list. During this four-day period, dieters must avoid:
- Added salt
- Processed foods
- Foods that can cause gas such as beans, broccoli, and onions
- Carbs such as pasta, breads, bagels, and bananas
- The diet also requires consuming 2 liters of what the authors call “sassy water,” which is water mixed with ginger root, cucumber, lemon, and mint leaves
After the four-day bloat-reduction phase, dieters consume a Mediterranean-style diet for 4 weeks at about 1,600 calories per day. The book contains meal recipes.
During this phase, dieters should:
- Eat three meals plus one snack daily (400 calories each meal plus 400 for one snack, for a daily total of 1,600 calories)
- Consume monounsaturated fats (MUFAs) at every meal
- Never go more than 4 hours without eating
- Sodas, coffees, and other highly caffeinated, fizzy, or sugary drinks
- Artificial sugars
- Excess carbohydrates
- Deep-fried foods
Sample breakfast options:
- Whole wheat English muffin, toasted and topped with a poached egg, avocado oil, low fat Swiss cheese, and sliced tomato
- Whole wheat toast topped with almond butter, served with fresh kiwis and strawberries
Sample lunch options:
- Whole wheat turkey sandwich with black olives, red onion, tomato, and lettuce
- Tuna melt on whole grain bread, made with light tuna, sunflower seeds, and melted cheese
Sample dinner options:
- Salmon and snow peas, mixed with whole grain pasta
- Asian-style chicken stir-fry with broccoli and cashews, served over soba noodles
Sample snack and beverage options:
- Chocolate strawberry smoothie, made with low fat vanilla yogurt and milk, frozen strawberries, and chocolate chips
- Hummus and pine nuts with red bell pepper slices
- “Sassy water” or plain water
- Herbal teas
How Much Weight Can You Lose on The Flat Belly Diet?
The Flat Belly Diet authors claim that dieters can lose up to 15 pounds and reduce belly fat in 32 days of following their plan.
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors