Top 9 Foods That Cause Belly Fat You Should Know About

Updated: 10/18/2019

In the 21st century, the fat belly becomes a typical problem for people, especially those who work in offices or do sedentary jobs. The unhealthy diet with high – fat content as well as the long period of sitting can be the major factors for fat contribution. Family genes, stress, hormonal changes can also be the reason for the fat belly. Unlike other body issues, fat belly is very stubborn. Many people have to invest plenty of time and money to take up the gym daily to reduce their waist size. However, once they stop the workout, this fat still comes back again. As fat belly is not easy to fight off, it will be better if we can eliminate the factors leading to belly fat in the first place. There are a lot of foods that cause belly fat consumed every day, yet people are not aware of. If these foods are limited and moved out from the daily diet, belly fat will not have a chance to be built up. Thus, in this article, will help you find out about the top foods that cause belly fat so that you can make the best diet plan for yourself. 

The List of Top 9 Foods That May Cause Belly Fat 

1. Sugary Foods and Beverages

People are often not aware of how much sugar they take in every day. Contained not only in sweet foods such as cakes and candies, sugar also appears in healthier food choices, for example, frozen yogurt and muffins. Most of the popular beverages, for instance, sweet tea, soda, and flavored coffee drinks are also sugar-sweetened and able to create fat buildup in your tummy. Studies have recorded a significant connection between high sugar intake and the belly fat in the human body[1] [2] [3]. The added sugar is believed to contain high fructose content. Fructose, unlike glucose, is very bad for our body by leading to several health problems such as heart disease, fatty liver, high blood pressure, type II diabetes and obesity[4]. As regular sugar is high in fructose (50 %), consuming sugary foods and beverages will increase the risk of belly fat. A research in 2009 has shown that obese and overweight people who consumed fructose-sweetened beverages and took in 25 % of calories experienced a significant increase in belly fat as well as the insulin decrease[5]

2. Alcohol

Alcohol can offer both good and bad effects on our health. Moderate drinking wine, especially red wine, can help to lower the risk of strokes and heart attacks. However, consuming too much alcohol can lead to several problems such as liver diseases, inflammation, and also belly fat. It has been proven that alcohol intake can increase the risk of obesity in many individuals, as per a study by Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario Research Institute[6]. Another study carried out by Yonsei University in Seoul, Korean found that a person who had more than 3 drinks every day was 80% more likely to obtain belly fat than the one who drank less alcohol[7]. It is also an interesting fact that people who drink less than 1 drink daily would have the smallest mean abdominal height in comparison to those who did not[8]

3. Trans Fats

Trans fats contained in packed foods such as crackers, muffins or baking mixes are the worst fats for the human body. They are created from unsaturated fats by adding hydrogen so that these unsaturated fats can be more stable. Trans fats cause heart disease, insulin resistance, inflammation, and a variety of other diseases. A 2007 study by Wake Forest University School of Medicine had carried out an experience on the monkey. The result showed that those fed with trans fat gained significant weight together with an increase in intra-abdominal fat deposition[9]. More specifically, after 6 years of studying, monkeys took in 8% trans fat would have 33% more abdominal fat than those who fed the same amount of monounsaturated fat diet, although both groups took in enough calories. Thus, eliminate the foods that contain trans fats out of your daily diet if you don’t want to get a fat belly. 

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4. Fruit Juice

Fruit juice can cause belly fat due to the sugar level contained in these sugary beverages. Even those labelled as unsweetened types, they still contain a lot of sugar. It is measured that 250 ml of cola and apple juice both contain about 24 grams of sugar. Even the same amount of another fruit juice, grape juice, is loaded with 32 gram of sugar. It is true that fruit juice can provide minerals and vitamins; the fructose found in these beverages can result in insulin resistance as well as belly fat gain. 

Moreover, liquid calories cannot provide the similar effects on appetite as well as full feeling as the calories contained in solid foods, based on a study carried out by the Purdue University in 2009[10] 

5. Diet Soda

If sugary beverages like fruit juice is not a good choice for a flat belly, can we rely on diet soda? The answer is sadly “no”. Studies have found a correlation between diet soda consumption and the fat belly[11]. This drink is often considered as a perfect drink for the zero calories content. However, it is loaded with chemicals and artificial sweeteners, which can contribute to gain weight. The artificial sweeteners found in diet soda can trigger the body for a shot of glucose. Drinking diet soda frequently will be an unhealthy choice that prevents your effort to lose belly fat. Besides, as it is poor in nutrients and vitamins, diet soda cannot offer any benefits for your overall health. 

6. Potato Chip

There are plenty of reasons explaining why potato chip is one of the worst foods for our body, including the bell. First of all, they are soaked with saturated fat, which can cause abdominal fat gain. Secondly, potato chips are crusted with salt, resulting in mid-level bloat. This food is also poorer in calories in comparison to other snacks out there. However, the most critical reason that makes potato chips the worst choice for health is that these chips cannot provide satisfaction. You can consume a handful of chips without feeling full and satisfied. The oil used for potato chips frying is full of fat, contributing a lot to gain weight[12]

If it is too difficult for you to give up on potato chips, you still can have a small serve and combine your meal with fruits, whole grains, lean protein, and vegetables to rebalance the nutrient content. You can also switch to chips that are labelled with healthy types of oil (which contain trans fat and low saturated content). You can also try Beanitos as an alternative to potato chips. Made from brown rice, navy beans, spices and oils, Beanitos has the same texture and flavor of traditional nachos yet less saturated fat content. 

7. French Fries 

A study by Harvard has shown the relationship between some typical types of foods and weight gain. Based on the result achieved, French fries were related to the greatest weight gain as 3.35 pounds after 4 years[13]. Thus, if you get into trouble in controlling the weight, you should consider limiting the French fries. Homemade sweet potato fries will be a better choice for your health instead of French fries as it still tasty without resulting in fat contribution in your belly.  

8. Cheese 

Based on the data on Americans’ diets, cheese is the top source of fat, especially saturated fat. This food is notorious for its saturated fat content and calorie density. The non – fat hard cheese with a rubbery texture should be limited firstly. With the high caloric content, cheese can lead to excessive caloric intake if consumed in a large amount. It is not necessary for you to cut off all the cheese consumption as it is a generous source of calcium and able to elevate the flavor of foods. To prevent fat belly from eating cheese, you just need to reduce or look for the low – fat or low – calorie cheese, such as Feta cheese, Swiss, or mozzarella. Those high in saturated fat like cheddar or ricotta should be eliminated from your daily diet. There are also plenty of substitutes for cheese that you can try such as ice cream, pizza, cookies, sausage and bacon. 

9. Japanese Sushi 

Containing high contents of refined carbs, Japanese sushi roll is the last factor leading to the fat belly. The white rice appearing in a sushi roll also provide low – fiber carbohydrates, which can result in insulin spikes and provoke your system to store more fat in your abdomen than normal. The white rice can cause other troubles for our body by losing minerals, vitamins and fibre, which are crucial for a healthy digestive system. The oil-rich fish such as tuna, salmon, and mackerel are not recommended for pregnant and breastfeeding women due to the side effects on a baby's development. If you are a big fan of sushi, let's try the brown rice as an alternative. The whole grains with the high content of fiber are even effective for smaller waist circumferences, making it always the top choice for burning belly fat at home. 

Even when people are fully aware of foods that cause belly fat, it is not easy to give up on their favorite diet. Especially in the modern time, when fast foods such as fries or chips take over the food industry, it is more difficult to say no to the tasty foods. Whether you want or not, belly fat should be controlled. It is not only about body care issues but also about the overall health problems. A big belly can be an early sign of heart disease, stroke, diabetes, cancer and several diseases. Therefore, for your best benefit, limit these listed foods and replace them with a healthier diet if you are having troubles with fat belly. We hope that this article will be beneficial for you. If you have any more ideas about foods that cause belly fat, please share with us. For more information, please visit the main page Foods For Beauty.

All content provided are for informational & educational purposes. We recommend you consult a healthcare professional to determine which method is appropriate for you.

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