Bikini season is creeping up on us and that belly won't disappear on it's own. Follow these quick tips and you'll get your flat abdomen in no time.
#1: Heat up your Veggies
Raffinose, a sugar found in beans, cabbage, brussels sprouts, broccoli, asparagus, other vegetables, and whole grains. Eaten raw, these foods cause more bloating than when they are cooked, so better to heat them up before ingesting.
#2: Avoid Starches
Starches like potatoes, corn, rice, bread, noodles and any products made from flour. These foods are broken down in the large intestine and tend to produce more gas.
#3: Cut Back on Sodium
The more sodium in your diet, the more bloating in your belly. The American Heart Association estimates that you can cut your sodium intake by 30 percent simply by putting your saltshaker out of reach. Worried that your food will taste bland? Garnish with herbs, spices, and citrus juices instead.
#4: Get Some Sleep
Sleepless nights mean stressful days, which can lead to emotional-eating binges. What's more, researchers from the University of Chicago Medical Center tracked 12 healthy males and found that those who got only four hours of rest at night had a 23 percent increase in appetite. So strive for at least seven hours of sleep a night.
#5: Use an Exercise Ball
Utilize a Swiss ball to get more out of your crunches. With your back on the ball, keep feet flat on the floor, knees bent. Place your hands behind your head. Contract your abs, lifting your shoulder blades and upper back off the ball. DO: Two sets of 20 repetitions, two to three times a week.
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Reprinted with permission of Hearst Communications, Inc.