How to get a flat stomach
By PW Nutritionist Stephanie Evans
Is bloating getting you down? Maybe yesterday’s takeaway left you feeling sluggish, or you feel your gut isn’t working as it should be. Perhaps you are just confused by all those models on social media with flat stomachs and want to know their secret? Well, our five top tips can help ease the bloat, help you get a flat tummy AND make you feel more confident next time you look in the mirror!
Often, when we think about getting a flat stomach, we assume we have to do 100 crunches a day and non-stop ab exercises. However, this is very rarely the case as the well-known saying goes “abs are 80% made in the kitchen and 20% in the gym.” What you eat can massively impact how bloated your stomach looks on a daily basis. Try to avoid foods which are processed and high in salt. Too much sodium can lead to water retention in the stomach and leave you with that ‘puffy’ feeling. Also, if you find yourself suffering with excessive wind try to cut back on beans, cauliflower and cabbage which are commonly linked to those suffering with IBS (irritable bowel syndrome). If gas and constipation are a common occurrence, we recommend getting tested for intolerances to common allergens such as lactose (found in dairy) and gluten!
Eat plenty of fibre
We recommend consuming foods high in fibre if you are struggling with constipation and bloating regularly. Foods such as oats, legumes and whole grains are some of the best sources alongside fresh fruit and vegetables. A great high fibre breakfast would be our Slender Porridge with banana and berries. When increasing fibre in your diet it is important to do this slowly and ensure to drink enough water throughout the day (6-8 glasses). If you are still unsure on what to eat, then check out our blog post providing you with a 7 day meal plan to reduce the bloat!
Avoid fizzy and sugary drinks
Limit your intake of fizzy drinks (including low calorie ones) as high levels of sweeteners have been linked to bloating. Excess sugar from fruit juice and alcohol should also be limited as it makes you harder to create a calorie deficit. Did you know a night out drinking can easily rack up over half of your daily calories? Instead drink plenty of water which you can flavour with a slice of lemon or cucumber. Herbal teas containing peppermint and ginger in the evening can also help to ease the bloat. Our Slender Tea consists of a blend of nettle, dandelion and peppermint which all ease bloating and cramps!
If you find yourself at the desk all day, or maybe on the couch at the weekend be mindful to go for a brisk walk or jog. Aim for 30 minutes of aerobic activity a day, which will not only help keep your weight down but also ensure your digestion is working smoothly. Ab exercises won’t spot reduce your belly fat but strengthening your core muscles can help tighten your waistline as well as improve your posture – this can do wonders for giving yourself a more ‘slimming’ appearance! For inspiration try these 5 plank variations to sculpt your abs!
It’s easy for us to be stressed on a daily basis without even noticing! Try not to get worked up on work, weight or little problems which can leave you feeling tense and unable to sleep at night. Both sleep and stress have been linked to an increased appetite and weight gain - predominantly around the stomach. Take time out in the evening to relax after a day at work. Take a bath, read a book and wind down to ensure you get a good night’s sleep of between 7-9hr each evening.