Unsweeten your sips
Over a six-year period, people who drank sugar-sweetened beverages daily gained 27 percent more ab fat than nondrinkers, a study in the journal Circulation found. Sodas, sweetened juices, coffee drinks, and smoothies are all culprits. If water won’t cut it, be choosy. Nix soda altogether. Instead of syrups and whipped cream, dress up your coffee with unsweetened almond or coconut milk, says Robin Foroutan, R.D.N., the national spokeswoman for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. “When you grab a juice, vegetable juice—but not beet or carrot—is better than fruit juice for limiting sugar.” And don’t forget about tea: “Several studies have shown that a compound in green tea increases metabolism,” Foroutan says. Research in the Journal of Nutrition also found that compounds in green, black, and oolong tea led to ab-fat loss in mice.
Go veggie for dinner
Having your biggest meal of the day at lunch and going smaller for dinner—try a broth-based soup and a big side of veggies—is helpful for weight loss, Foroutan says. A study in Diabetic Medicine found that type 2 diabetics who ate a vegetarian diet (combined with moderate aerobic exercise three times per week) lost more dangerous visceral belly fat and body weight than those who ate a conventional lower-carb