1 – Brown Rice
What’s in it: Whole grains
The belly-fat connection: People who reported eating three or more servings of whole grains per day had 10 percent less visceral adipose tissue (aka belly fat) than those whose diets included very few whole grains. (The study was published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition and counted one piece of whole grain bread or 1/2 cup of oatmeal as a serving of whole grains.) The catch? Whole grain intake didn’t make any difference in belly fat if people were also eating four or more servings of refined grains per day (think anything made with white flour, and one piece of whole bread or 1/2 cup of white rice is one serving.) Those who got the most belly-fat-reducing benefit from their whole grains ate less than one daily serving of the refined stuff. Which means you can’t chase your cup of brown rice with three pieces of white-bread toast.
More ideas of what to eat: Look for products that say “100 percent whole wheat” or “100 percent whole grain” on the packaging, not “multigrain” or simply “whole wheat,” as those often contain some refined sources.