The Flat Belly Diet ReviewThe Flat Belly Diet is a weight loss plan that claims you can lose up to 15 pounds in 32 days. All you have to do is follow the program outlined in the book, “Flat Belly Diet!”, co-authored by Liz Vaccariello – who was SVP/Editor-in-Chief of Prevention at the time the book was published – and nutritionist, Cynthia Sass, MPH, MA, RD, CSSD.

Developed by Sass for Prevention, the Flat Belly Diet is an eating plan for weight loss, specifically focusing on reducing belly fat. It encourages dieters to include monounsaturated fats (“good” fats) in every meal. These include fats such as nuts, olive oil, and other plant-based foods. Four meals should be consumed daily with each meal having no more than 400 calories (1,600 calories per day).

The first part of the plan concentrates on targeting bloating. During a 4-day period, dieters are not to add any salt to what they eat and must stay away from processed foods, certain carbohydrates (ex. bananas, pasta, etc.), and foods like onion, beans and broccoli that promote gas. They must also drink 2 liters of “sassy water”, which is water that is mixed with cucumber, mint leaves, lemon. and ginger root. After the first 4 days, dieters are to move on to a Mediterranean-style diet for the next 4 weeks, eating meals prescribed in the book.

Does it work? No diet has ever been proven to target fat loss in a specific part of the body. Fat reduction occurs all over the body, with the most noticeable difference being first seen in areas where fat was the greatest (typically the belly area). Therefore, while the Flat Belly Diet may help you lose weight around your middle, so can many other weight loss plans. Furthermore, consuming monounsaturated fats does not target belly fat.

The average dieter who follows the Flat Belly Diet and loses 15 pounds in a month is losing more water weight than actual fat. Water weight that is lost will be regained. This is not to say that you cannot lose fat by following this diet plan, only that it will take much longer than a month to see significant fat loss.

No exercise is required, but a “flat belly workout” can be followed to support the diet. To follow the Flat Belly Diet, dieters simply require the book or they can do it online. Although the book is a one-time purchase, the online version requires a monthly subscription, which can be quite costly. Furthermore, some of the foods that are recommended for this diet may not be available at a local grocery store or may be pricey.

This diet is vegetarian friendly, but is not recommended for those who have a hard time following a strict diet plan. This is not a low-fat diet. Portion sizes need to be controlled to avoid consuming too many calories.

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