What to eat to lose belly fat? Lemon water, cayenne pepper, apple cider vinegar, chia seeds, and kombucha. These are the top 5 foods google said I should eat to lose belly fat. While this will lead to the most uncomfortable dump of your life, these won’t do anything for belly fat loss. Let’s cut through the BS and look at the real science behind the foods that can actually help you lose belly fat and with weight loss overall. There’s 5 of them worth talking about.

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Number 1: “low calorie density foods”. These contain a ton of weight and volume for relatively few calories. People who eat these foods consume fewer calories everyday but end up eating more actual food than those who don’t eat these foods. So what are the best low calorie density foods for belly fat loss? Basically, most fruits, vegetables, and low-fat foods classify as a low calorie density food. But that doesn’t mean you should completely restrict yourself from high calorie density foods. You just want to eat less of them and add more low to moderate calorie density foods into your diet. For example, during breakfast, instead of having high sugar granola, go for a whole grain cereal with fruit.

Number 2. Depending on the type of food you eat, your body will burn a certain amount of calories just to digest that food. This is what’s known as the thermic effect of food and is part of what makes our next food, lean proteins, so effective for belly fat loss. The importance of having enough protein when losing fat goes far beyond this. It’s the most important food to help you maintain or even build more muscle as you lose fat. This will not only help you look better once you get lean enough to lose your belly fat, but it also seems to correlate well with preventing fat regain after your diet is over. But, it’s important you prioritize lean proteins that deliver significantly more protein for fewer calories. Egg whites, shrimp, protein powder, low-fat greek yogurt, extra lean ground beef, chicken breast, turkey, tofu, and white fish are all great examples. You can still have the fattier protein sources in moderation, but by eating mostly leaner proteins, you’ll not only consume fewer calories, but you can also potentially swap those saved “fat” calories for something else.

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Food number 3: omega-6 PUFA. You need about 20-30% of your calories to come from fats to support your general health and hormones. But the specific types of fat you eat matter when it comes to belly fat. To potentially avoid building up the dangerous fat in the belly and organs, try to moderate the amount of daily fats you get from saturated sources such as bacon, cheese, butter, cream, and fatty meats like pork and beef. Instead, try to have more of your fats come from foods rich in omega-6 PUFA’s such as nuts, seeds, and seed oils, as well as omega-3 PUFA’s which have been shown to have other health benefits and can be found in sources such as salmon, tuna and flaxseed.

The 4th food on our list that’ll help you lose belly fat is a controversial one and was put to the test in a 2015 study, where researchers took 300 overweight individuals and had them start the same weight loss program. Only difference was one group was assigned to drink an additional 24oz of water everyday whereas the other group had to drink that same amount but with a non-nutritive sweetener. The sugar free group not only experienced significantly greater weight loss, but they were also better able to keep that weight off for good. Why? It's possible that in the water group, limiting access to sweet beverages may have promoted their desire to satisfy their cravings from other sources like candy and desserts.

Number 5. So far I’ve given you a lot of great food options to lose fat. But let’s be honest, some of the foods I mentioned won’t appeal to you. Sure zucchini is a low calorie dense food and yes egg whites are a great lean protein source, but if you don’t enjoy those foods then don’t force yourself to eat them. The key to making your diet stick is to eat your favorite foods. Personally, I love wraps, burritos, and shawarmas so I make one every day. But I’ll incorporate what I taught you earlier about what to eat to lose belly fat by using a low calorie wrap or tortilla, adding plenty of veggies, using a lean protein source, and adding fats or calorie dense condiments in moderation. So pick a handful of your favorite foods from each of the categories we went through, add a couple of your favorite treats to have every now and then, and that’s pretty much your diet. It’s as simple as that.

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28 thoughts on “How to EAT to Get Lean (5 Science-Backed Foods)”
  1. Thanks for the info. Well for me, recently from my own experience of drinking sweet tasting 0 calorie drinks has given me a preference of water over 0 sugar. I think maybe good for weight loss but not so good for the body or my body organs. But Thanks again Jeremy. Love your videos.

  2. 6:30 here it would be interesting to learn about their lipid composition. Loved this video, it synthesized lots of information I was trying to explain to my partner about how we need different nutritional strategies since our bodies have different tendencies and we have different endocrine conditions to consider that affect how our bodies manage fat.

  3. I’d love to see a video about sugar alternatives such as sucralose and stevia. I always see these being used in protein powders, yogurt, and drinks and am always second guessing if they’re truly better as an alternative.

    Not to mention there loads of misinformation out there saying all artificial sweeteners cause cancer or whatever.

    1. try allulose, it’s almost a perfect alternative for me, not nearly as bad as stevia

    2. my opinion of sucralose is low, likely because I consumed a ton of it in the past cause I hate plain water. Side effects included brain fog and some digestive issues. I had stopped for about 6 months then picked it up again without issue but severely limited intake of it during that time. There is some research suggesting sucralose helps the body store fat too, so I’d wager while it’s used in nearly every supplement on the market the reason people stay lean is the exercise. Your mileage may vary.

    3. There’s different levels for them. Added sugar is more or less the worst while natural low calorie sweeteners like pure stevia or pure monk fruit extract are the better sweeteners.

      Sugar alcohols are fine but don’t go overboard, erythritol generally is the best. But it is a high FODMAP sweetener so it can make you gassy or have an upset stomach.

      Allulose is comparable to erythritol, maybe a little better but still could give you gas/stomach pain.

      I’ve been using a bunch of different ones in my ninja creami and I’ve had the best results with pure monk fruit powder or stevia. NOT cut with erythritol because my gut does not like sugar alcohol. If you can eat it then you can go for the sugar alcohol or rare sugar like Allulose.

      Not a doctor but this has been my experience. If you really want to be super safe just go for monk fruit extract or stevia. But it’s worth seeing how you handle sugar alcohol and Allulose.

      Small amounts of aspartame, sucralose are okay just don’t go nuts. So Diet Coke is probably a no-go, but a packet of Splenda is no biggie.

  4. Thanks for another informative video!! I’ve eliminated all of those bad foods you mentioned from my diet and have dropped 20lbs in the past 8 months. I stopped drinking sugary drinks 4 years ago but I didn’t switch to the non-sugar alternatives. I don’t believe in switching sugar for factory-made chemicals. I prefer to just avoid them all.
    One mindset change I use in helping me avoid unhealthy foods is to say to myself, “That’s what fat people eat.”
    Since I no longer put myself in that group, I pass on it and consume something more healthy.

    1. I love that sentence! That’s what fat people ear , I am going to try it but not just to eating but to everything…thank you!

  5. There seems to be quite a bit of confusion and pushback in the comments about “seed oils” and “artificial sweeteners”. My goal with this channel is to inform you with the best available evidence while considering the strength of the evidence. So while there is some valid mechanistic speculation, the human evidence we have points toward PUFAs (including Omega-6 which are found in seed oils) being neutral to positive for most health outcomes particularly when replacing saturated fat (as noted in the two studies covered in the video).

    As for the concerns of negative health effects from sugar-free drinks, again the most high quality data we have says otherwise: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30602577/ . There are some unknowns with certain artificial sweeteners, but overall the most recent human research we have points to them being safe, and as mentioned in the video, helpful for weight loss purposes.

    Ultimately I respect each of your decisions as to what you decide to eat, and I get how confusing/overwhelming getting nutrition info from a bunch of different sources/influencers can be, but realize that research is always evolving and changing. I try my best to stay on top of the latest evidence, and sometimes this contradicts what I used to believe. So be open to changing your thoughts/beliefs based on new evidence, that’s the only way to grow and that’s what this channel is all about.

    Anyways, I hope you found the video useful. Here’s all the links to the studies mentioned in the video:

    RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN SATIETY AND CALORIE CONSUMPTION
    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/6303104/
    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/11518179/

    EFFECTS OF LOW-CALORIE DENSITY FOODS ON CALORIE AND FOOD INTAKE
    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16762948/

    THERMIC EFFECT OF FOOD
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC524030/

    HIGH PROTEIN VS LOW PROTEIN DIET
    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/8856395/
    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/11063440/

    PROTEIN INTAKE AND POST-DIET FAT REGAIN
    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26813524/

    CONSUMPTION OF PUFAS VS SATURATED FATS ON TYPE OF BELLY FAT
    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22492369/
    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24550191/

    THE EFFECTS OF NON-NUTRITIVE SWEETENER VS WATER ON WEIGHT LOSS
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4744961

    1. I use stevia for my drinks/tea since 6 years. 80% gets thrown out after consumption and isnt consumed. Its plant based and not synthetic.

    2. The pushback about artificial sweeteners is not about their effect on lowering the net caloric intake for those who would rather go for a sugary drink. This is logically sound, but the effects of artificial sweeteners on gut microbiome, and cardiometabolic health are not yet realized, and we only just started to study gut microbiome seriously in the last decade. Even scientists are prone to confirmation bias, which is why we have a peer review process. Most reviews on NNS suggest that the studies are incomplete and need more research to support any kind of claim. It is kind of surprising that there are still products marketed as healthy, even though the studies in favor and against it are non-conclusive. I would take NNSs with a huge bucket of salt.

    3. PUFA is metabolically toxic. Dr. Paul Saladino talks about this and cites many studies.

    4. Seed oils are some of the worst foods you can possibly eat. Omega 6 out of balance wtih Omega 3 is also not a good thing. From personal experience diet soda causes sugar craving especially on an empty stomach. Most people I see drinking diet soda on a regular basis are overweight. I have learned a lot from a lot of your videos but this one makes some pretty shocking statements.. I think you need some more research. The literature on seed oils is everywhere on how bad they are for you.

  6. I think it’s important to note the kind of saturated fat the studies were using, Palm oil. i’d be curious if the same result happens with coconut oil which is usually pretty excellent for people unless there’s like an allergy or something

  7. The first time I got down to single digit body fat, I drank sugar-free soda AND flavored water (Crystal Light packets) to help satisfy my sugar cravings. It totally worked for me!

  8. This is the most well explained video ive ever seen on how to get lean. in a clear, concise way. This guy explains it better than ive seen anyone else do it. This is EXACTLY how i think in my head when im cutting!! My exact thought process and everything. He literally lays out your diet for you and he even lists some good food swaps

  9. I think, eating sweet foods can lead to sugar cravings and can often lead to consuming more calories than necessary. This can be avoided by limiting the intake of added sugar and opting for natural sources of sugar, like fruits, which can provide the necessary nutrients and energy without leading to unnecessary cravings. I lost 35 pounds last year. I achieved this by drinking plenty of water throughout the day, avoiding sugary drinks, and being mindful of my overall calorie intake. I found that cutting out sugary drinks was one of the easiest ways to reduce my calorie intake without feeling deprived.

    1. This video confused me, I’ve been told butter is better than canola oil which is inflammatory. I do know a lot of body builders who use no sugar drinks when cutting

  10. His videos are so easy to understand, the visuals literally help me so much! Thank you Jeremy!

  11. This is exactly the information missing from most videos about consuming calories and dieting. I’ve often wondered “Yeah, but what does 200 calories on a plate actually look like?” Thank you for making this video – its very helpful!

  12. This really went against what I’ve learned about Keto where they emphasize the butters and bacon and such for weight loss. They seem to have their science and proof that it works best and is healthier as well. Now im really confused!

    1. Yeah, I’m not sure this guy knows what he is talking about. I get hungry drinking sodas with artificial sweeteners.

  13. J., I’ve found that drinking our favorite sugar free drink indeed keeps the craving of “sinful” treats at bay. So, you are absolutely right. Just a footnote for us women: cellulite increases. One has to choose. Thanx for the informative video.

  14. The sugar free drinks is SO TRUE. I started drinking Coca Cola Zero a few months back and I noticed I don’t crave sweets anymore. Combining this with regular exercice and eating some protein bars, and I can proudly say I am building more muscle instead of fat. Not quite losing the fat so much I dropped around 1-2kg but I gained muscle instead

  15. This is great advice that i wish i had known sooner. Calorie restriction + eating filling foods (makes it much easier to sit at a lower daily calorie count) was by far the most potent combination for me (270 back under 200 now). I learned this the hard way since you just can’t afford to spend your precious calories on empty sugary junk, doritos, or whatever, when heavily restricting.

    Not sure why this message isn’t pushed harder. People seem to think that eating healthy is just eating the right foods, when it is also eating the right amounts of them.

  16. Great video! I really appreciate the valuable information and the scientific approach you took in explaining how to eat to get lean. The five foods you discussed were not only delicious but also backed by solid research, which makes it easier for viewers like me to trust the advice provided.

    I particularly liked how you emphasized the importance of protein-rich foods such as lean meats, eggs, and legumes. It’s refreshing to see that you mentioned the role of protein in building and preserving lean muscle mass, as this is often overlooked in many diet-related videos. The fact that you backed it up with scientific evidence gives me even more confidence in incorporating these foods into my daily meals.

    Furthermore, your explanation of the benefits of incorporating leafy green vegetables into one’s diet was enlightening. I appreciated the way you highlighted their low calorie and high nutrient content, making them an excellent choice for those aiming to achieve a lean physique. The scientific studies you mentioned reinforced the importance of these vegetables for weight loss and overall health, which is incredibly motivating.

    The inclusion of healthy fats, such as avocados and nuts, was also a valuable piece of advice. Many people tend to fear fats when trying to lose weight, but your explanation of their role in satiety, hormone regulation, and overall well-being helped dispel any misconceptions. By providing scientific evidence supporting the benefits of these fats, you’ve given viewers like me the confidence to incorporate them into our diets without fear.

    Overall, I found this video to be informative, well-researched, and presented in a clear and engaging manner. Thank you for sharing this valuable knowledge with us. I look forward to implementing these science-backed food choices into my daily routine and achieving my fitness goals. Keep up the great work!

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