Developed by Liz Vaccariello and Cynthia Sass, editors of popular heath and lifestyle magazine ‘Prevention’, the 1600-calorie Flat Belly Diet has been moulded around the classic Mediterranean style diet. This 32-day diet plan guarantees that a devout follower will lose up to 15 pounds, several inches of belly fat and feel rejuvenated at the same time. It boasts of visible results (5 pounds and 7 inches lighter) within a measly 96 hours of committing to the diet. In addition, the tagline of this programme proclaims, “A flat belly is about food & attitude … not a single crunch required!”
Commencing with a unique ‘bloat-busting 4-day jump-start’ the Flat Belly Diet helps you to achieve the aforementioned goals by consuming the right kind of foods, which include, wholesome, unrefined foods, fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, beans, seeds, lean protein, and very little red meat (once a month). During the jump-start period, dieters drink 2 litres of daily “sassy water,” a blend of spices, herbs, citrus, and cucumber and christened after Cynthia Saas. This is the most rigorous period of the diet.
Nutritionists claim that the secret key to this diet’s success is the substitution of Saturated Fat with Monounsaturated Fatty Acids (MUFAs). MUFAs can be sourced in some oils like olive oil, some chocolate like semi-sweet chocolate, nuts and seeds, olives and avocados. This regular ingestion of MUFAs is also accredited with helping the dieter feel more full and satisfied after each meal.
Another cornerstone of the Flat Belly Diet is 4 meal plans in a day, each comprising of 400 calories. This differs from the regular practice of 3 meals. Moreover, the diet happily allows foods like chocolate and peanut butter, so as to benefit from the MUFAs present in these foods, which are mercilessly shunned by most diet programmes.
Dieters don’t count and calculate calories. Instead, they can pick and choose from a list of 28 compatible mix-and-match breakfasts, lunches, dinners and snack packs. Flat Belly Diet comes with food lists and accompanying portion sizes and calories allow flexibility and room for personal tastes in creating snack packs and can be used according to your need and schedule. Recipes are available with nutrient analysis of calories, protein, carbohydrates, total fat, saturated fat, cholesterol, sodium and fibre so that you can understand exactly what and how much you are eating.
Although the marketing campaign dismisses the need to exercise to view desired results, the diet itself encourages exercise and provides for a 28-day work out plan, which has been found to be effective. Experts also advise dieters to carry forward this regime once the diet duration is up.
Experts believe that losing 15 pounds in 32 days is most likely the result of losing water weight and not fat. Professionals doubt the effectiveness of MUFAs in burning belly fat citing lack of scientific proof, but are quick to credit the Flat Belly Diet as being a nutritious, healthy and balanced plan that focuses on improving overall health.
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