Today I’d like to introduce you to my list of top belly fat burning foods.
Firstly, I think it’s important to say that there is not one single ingredient, type of food, or drink that will magically make belly fat disappear all on its own.
So, if you come across anyone telling you otherwise, ignore them.
You can’t “spot fix” an area of your body with exercise, so you certainly can’t do it with food.
With that said, if you adopt a nutritious, well-balanced, and wholesome diet, you will lose weight, and this will naturally help you to reduce belly fat.
To be honest, losing weight or burning belly fat is more about feeling full and satisfied without feeling bloated.
So, focusing on eating foods high in protein, high in fibre, and high in healthy fats is essential.
Whereas, avoiding heavily processed foods, especially those high in sodium and sugar, is a must.
Finally, keeping well hydrated will not only aid digestion, but often dehydration is confused with hunger.
Without further ado, let’s get to the list of foods that help to burn belly fat.
Top Belly Fat Burning Foods
I’m actually going to reveal my “go-to” breakfast to you here with the first 4 foods on the list.
I know carbs get a bad rap, but in truth, not all carbs are “bad”.
Oats contain beta-glucans, which is a type of soluble fibre that you won’t often come across elsewhere.
It will boost the immune system, lower cholesterol, regulate blood sugar levels, and increase satiety.
So, in the battle against belly fat, oats are definitely the way to go.
2. Peanut Butter
Now I’m guessing that peanut butter wouldn’t be at the top of everyone’s list when it comes to losing weight and burning fat.
This is because peanut butter contains a high amount of fat.
However, a typical 2-tablespoon serving will have a total of 15.6g of fat, although only 3.3g of this is saturated fat.
The remaining 12.3g is the healthy kind of unsaturated fat.
So, eating peanut butter in moderation is fine.
Peanut butter also contains a high amount of protein and fibre, which means it will help to feel full and satisfied.
Just ensure you check the ingredients, which should only contain peanuts, salt, and a little oil.
The varieties that contain fructose corn syrup or additional additives are best avoided.
Bananas are often viewed as both good and bad in terms of weight loss.
For those who are following a low-carb diet, bananas are a definite no-no.
This is because they pack around 23g of carbs per medium-sized banana.
However, they are filled with potassium and magnesium, as well as prebiotics, which once again will keep you feeling full, and can actually offset bloating.
Blueberries are full of fibre, plus they are packed full of antioxidants.
They also happen to contain much less sugar than most other fruits.
So, you should find them extremely satisfying, and they’re an ideal healthy sweet treat for dessert, or simply as a quick snack.
Eggs are another food that have had as many negatives said about them as positives.
But in truth, they are low in calories, high in protein, and rich in various dietary nutrients.
I’ve also never been one to worry about the “high cholesterol” levels in egg yolks.
If you’re going to eat an egg, eat the whole thing.
An ideal breakfast if you love your omelettes, although just the simple hard-boiled egg (or two) makes for the perfect snack.
Whether your taste buds favour sweet or savoury, pumpkins can certainly help to fill the void.
Pumpkins are high in fibre and potassium, as well as being extremely low in calories.
They make the perfect side dish to a main meal or pumpkin puree could also serve as a great dessert.
A fantastic little dessert will include a few spoonfuls of plain Greek yoghurt, pumpkin puree, with a sprinkling of cinnamon.
7. Greek Yoghurt
Plain Greek yoghurt will contain a good dose of protein, but it’s the friendly bacteria, or probiotics, that make this a real winner.
Probiotics are known to reduce bloating, regulate the function of the gut, and boost the immune system.
8. Sweet Potatoes
Okay, if Keto or Paleo is your thing, look away now.
There will be quite a few more carbs on my list of top belly fat burning foods, but as I say, not all carbs are bad.
But, I understand that you low-carb eaters will be feeling very nervous at some of the foods I recommend.
Sweet potatoes are full of potassium and beta-carotene, as well as being low in calories.
They also happen to have a great deal of fibre, and are rich in minerals. Ideal properties to overcome bloating and keep you feeling full.
9. Grass-Fed Meat
Grass-fed meats are typically leaner than the grain-fed variety, and they have higher levels of good fats, such as omega-3.
Leucine is an amino acid found in grass-fed meat, which is used in the biosynthesis of proteins.
And it just so happens that red meat offers some of the best sources of leucine.
Additionally, the high protein content can help add lean muscle to your frame, which is the ideal way to counteract body fat.
The monounsaturated fats found in avocados are great for your heart and they’re also extremely filling.
In fact, avocados are often lauded as one of the best fruits (oh yes, an avocado is indeed a fruit) for those following a low-carb diet.
With that said, irrespective of diet, we can all benefit from eating them.
There have even been numerous studies which linked eating avocados to lower body mass index and waist circumference.
So, an awesome belly fat burning food you could say.
Sauerkraut will probably divide many people’s opinion, as it is a fermented food.
However, it is extremely low in calories and fat, and has much the same probiotic benefits as Greek Yoghurt.
Try adding sauerkraut to a sandwich or a salad to reap the various benefits.
Tuna is often viewed as a healthy food, whether it’s fresh or in a tin.
It’s packed full of protein and omega-3, which will ensure that it keeps you full and well away from snacking.
There are actually two types of omega-3 in tuna, namely DHA and EPA.
DHA has been scientifically proven to be 40-70% more effective than EPA at preventing enlarged fat cells and at suppressing fat genes.
Tuna happens to be fish with the highest content of DHA.
Yet another fatty fish that is extremely good for you.
Salmon contains polyunsaturated fatty acids and vitamin D.
Both of these are proven to aid in weight management, especially for individuals who are overweight.
The high protein content will also keep you fuller for longer, plus you get 25% of your daily vitamin B6 allowance, which is great for stress and your overall mood.
Kefir is similar to yoghurt in that it is a byproduct of dairy and is full of probiotics, which will help to regulate your gut, and stop you feeling bloated.
With that said, it’s far creamier, so may be the ideal ingredient to add to your smoothies.
Let’s not forget the high protein content, which is fantastic on many counts.
Raspberries are full of fibre and water, which helps to keep you feeling full.
As with most berries, they are full of polyphenols, so they can certainly aid in burning fat around your midsection.
Best of all, you can eat raspberries as a snack, add them to your morning oats or yoghurt, or simply blend them into a smoothie.
Lentils are high in protein content, and make an excellent base for soup.
You can even add them to salads.
Lentils have a way of making a meal feel far more substantial due to the resistant starch and fibre found in them.
You will typically feel more satisfied if you consume a meal with lentils added, which will keep the dreaded snacking between meals at bay.
Omega-3 isn’t just an amino acid found in fish, and the plant-based variety is just as good for you.
This is not only true of spinach, but all leafy greens.
The high potassium content can also ward off bloating, especially the type of bloating that is commonly associated with a high sodium intake.
18. Dinosaur Kale
It seemed as though there was a time that kale took over the world, and was viewed as one of the healthiest foods ever.
However, I just couldn’t get my head (or taste buds) around the bitter taste.
With that said, I then discovered dinosaur kale, also known as black or lacinato kale, which is far less bitter than the regular variety.
The high quantities of protein, fibre, and vitamin B will also help if you’re looking to reduce that waistline.
19. Black beans
Whether you’re aware of it or not, the gut contains both good and bad bacteria.
The bad bacteria will typically be flushed away with all other toxins through the lymphatic system, whereas the good bacteria is here to stay.
With that said, the good bacteria also needs food to live and thrive, and black beans are probably the best way to achieve this.
They are full of soluble fibre, and once the good bacteria gets to this it will produce butyrate.
Butyrate has been proven to increase the efficiency of calorie burning.
20. Pumpkin Seeds
I was never one for nuts and seeds until I found out that they would help to increase my protein intake.
Pumpkin seeds are probably at the top of the tree.
As well as containing a high amount of protein, pumpkin seeds pack in a great deal of fibre, potassium, and zinc.
These are fantastic nutrients to aid with muscle growth and recovery.
For me, I’m not someone who will nibble on seeds, so I prefer to sprinkle some on various meals, such as my morning oats.
You can add flaxseeds to my list of things I never thought I’d eat until I found out how good they were.
They contain plant-based omega-3 fatty acids, including ALA, and once again, they are high in fibre.
I’ve actually found a milled seed and nut mixture at my local supermarket, which includes both pumpkin seeds and flaxseeds, and this goes straight onto my oats.
22. Sunflower Seeds
Staying with seeds for the moment, sunflower seeds are probably one of the best ways to get your daily intake of magnesium.
There are even dieticians who claim that the “good” fats that are found in sunflower seeds can help women (what about us men?) reduce belly fat without making any other alterations to their diet.
23. Dark Chocolate
Well, I bet you weren’t expecting to find chocolate on a list of top belly fat burning foods were you?
Dark chocolate is actually acclaimed as a “superfood”, but should obviously only be eaten in moderation.
It is the flavonoids found in dark chocolate that provide anti-inflammatory, heart-health, and belly-shrinking benefits.
Dark chocolate should contain 70% or above cocoa to be considered healthy, and for those of you on a low-carb diet, aim for 85% or above.
24. Green Tea
Green tea contains a natural phenol and antioxidant known as Catechin.
The consumption of catechins can dramatically increase the metabolic rate, which is ideal for burning fat.
There have been various studies on the effects of catechins via drinking green tea.
And it has been proven time-and-time again that those who do partake in drinking green tea typically had a smaller waistline than those who don’t.
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25. Citrus Fruits
Admittedly, you may not immediately think of munching on a lemon or a lime in an attempt to shrink that midsection.
However, there is nothing wrong with adding a slice to liven up water, which is essential for you to drink if you’re looking to trim down.
With that said, there is always grapefruit and a wide variety of oranges as well.
Citrus fruits are full of antioxidants and can help to overcome bloating.
I may not personally be a fan, but asparagus literally has everything you can think of when it comes to torching fat off the belly and the body fat.
Extremely low in calories and high in protein.
And let’s not forget the other nutritional benefits, including calcium, copper, fibre, folate, iron, as well as vitamins A, C, E, K, and B6.
Another food that has soared in popularity in recent years, and with good reason too.
Quinoa is high in fibre and protein, and contains various nutrients such as potassium and zinc.
Quinoa also happens to have one of the highest concentrations of betaine, which is fantastic for increasing metabolic rate and inhibiting the production of fat.
28. Beetroot (Beets)
I’ve spoken before about how my hatred for beetroot as a child turned into love as an adult.
Plus this was all to do with taste rather than the health benefits.
With that said, beetroot is yet another source of betaine, which is not only fantastic for the metabolism and fat burning, but also helps with insulin resistance, inflammation, and is a mood-booster.
Believe it or not, there are even entire diet programs based around the use of turmeric.
Obviously these involve more than simply eating turmeric on its own, which I would not suggest you do.
Turmeric is probably one of the greatest anti-inflammatory foods you will ever come across.
Belly fat actually promotes inflammation, so try some of the following uses of turmeric to overcome this.
Cinnamon helps to regulate blood sugar levels by reducing the secretion of insulin.
Often used as a spiced-based sweetener, you can try sprinkling some on your oats, or even in your morning tea/coffee, or smoothie.
31. Cayenne Pepper
Cayenne pepper may burn your tongue, but it also happens to burn your belly fat at the same time.
In fact, “hot” spices and spicy food in general is known to increase the metabolism, which is ideal for anyone looking to trim down the abdominal area.
It is actually capsaicin which is the main source of heat, as well as the ingredient that speeds up the metabolic rate.
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I’m not sure if pickles are one of those “you either love them or hate them” types of food, but they are certainly an awesome way to burn body fat.
They are full of fibre and water, extremely low in calories, plus vinegar is actually known to speed up the rate at which the body burns carbs for energy by nearly 40%.
I’m definitely in the “love them” camp.
33. Aubergine (Eggplant)
I’m most certainly a lover of aubergine too.
Just like many of the foods I’ve mentioned today, aubergines are a great source of protein and fibre, plus they are extremely low in calories,
In fact, even an entire eggplant, typically weighing 550g, only contains around 136 calories.
Grilled or stir-fried with just a drizzle of olive oil and some seasoning, aubergines are certainly one of my favourite side dishes.
34. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil certainly created a buzz in the low-carb world, but yet it has had equally as many haters, who claim it is terrible as a health food.
With that said, there have been numerous studies which show that the medium-chain triglycerides found in coconut oil are immediately burned off as energy rather than being stored as fat.
There are even claims that the lauric acid found in coconut oil will specifically focus on burning belly fat.
35. Apple Cider Vinegar
If I’m being completely honest I’ve only really known of the existence of apple cider vinegar over the last decade or so.
However, it’s health benefits have been around for many more years, and it was actually used as an ancient folk remedy.
The main component of vinegar is acetic acid.
There have been various animal studies which show that acetic acid reduces storage of fat in the belly and increases fat burning in general.
There isn’t a great deal of research into the fat burning effects on humans, but we do that apple cider vinegar can reduce appetite, as well as lowering blood sugar and insulin levels.
36. Olive Oil
I would hazard a guess that most people would rate olive oil as healthy, but without really knowing why.
Olive oil will lower triglycerides (fatty acids combined with a form of glucose), raise our “good” cholesterol levels, and release the amino acid most commonly associated with feeling full and satisfied, GLP-1.
There are even studies which show that olive oil can boost the metabolic rate, thus increasing the body’s fat burning potential.
37. Chili Peppers
Much the same as cayenne pepper, it is the presence of capsaicin (this is the compound that makes peppers hot) in chili peppers that is known to increase the metabolic rate.
The higher your metabolism is running, the more calories and fat you’ll burn throughout the day.
There is also a theory that by adding heat to food we typically feel more satisfied, which means there is far less likelihood of overeating.
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Chicken, and other poultry such as turkey, is packed full of protein.
This will leave you feeling fuller for longer.
I know there is much said about various parts of the chicken and that most people looking to lose weight or burn belly fat should stick to eating the breast, and avoid everything else.
There is some truth in the fact that other parts of the chicken, i.e., thighs, wings, legs, etc. contain more fat, and I guess this is especially true of the skin.
However, it’s not a theory that I’ve ever subscribed to – as I always say, “Everything in moderation”.
Another fatty fish, but one that is probably even better in terms of your overall health than salmon.
Sardines contain the same types of fatty acids as tuna and salmon, and once again both the fresh and tinned variety are acceptable.
Sardines not only help to reduce weight gain, but they’re great for your cholesterol, and can even boost your mood.
Onions, and in fact any flowering plant from the allium family, such as garlic, shallots, leeks, chives, spring onions (scallions), etc. are known to add a great deal of flavour to food.
However, they also contain a vast amount of prebiotic fibre, so add them wherever you see fit.
I’m forever using onions in my omelettes, salads, sandwiches, and in just about everything else that I cook.
I do love adding tomatoes to a lot of my meals.
The red colour of tomatoes comes from lycopene, which is an extremely fantastic antioxidant.
Tomatoes are also full of water, which can help you stay hydrated and ward off potential fluid retention typically caused by excess salt in your diet.
Tomatoes also happen to have plenty of vitamin C and potassium, which is known to lower blood pressure.
42. Bell Peppers
All bell peppers are great for you.
However, red peppers are a fantastic source of vitamin C, which can actually reduce the levels of cortisol in the body
Just in case you weren’t aware, cortisol, often known as the stress hormone, encourages the belly to store fat whenever it is released.
So, it’s probably best that you try to remain calm when you’re battling with the bulge.
Who doesn’t love an apple?
Apples seem to be most people’s favoured fruit of choice, although I accept that many people probably can’t stand them.
However, by getting more apples into your diet you can increase your daily fat burning.
The peel of an apple contains ursolic acid, which is known to increase muscle mass and brown fat.
Before that scares you off, brown fat is the “good” kind of fat, which will help keep your midsection looking trim.
You knew it was coming, but considering the human body is mainly made up of water, it makes sense that we should drink it regularly and replenish our levels.
I’ve mentioned before that dehydration is often confused with hunger, so make sure that you’re drinking enough water on a daily basis.
Plus drinking water is known to increase your resting energy expenditure – in other words you burn more calories whenever you drink water.
So there you have some of the top belly fat burning foods.
I’m sure you’ll agree there’s a wide selection to choose from, and hopefully there’s something for everyone.
As I’ve mentioned, you can’t expect to eat certain foods and then watch your belly magically disappear.
However, the vast majority of these foods will be high in fibre, protein, as well as various essential vitamins and minerals.
They will help to keep you full and satisfied, which will stop you from snacking between meals, and in many cases even raise your metabolic rate.
Talking of the metabolism, I’ve recently reviewed a flexible eating program, which is aimed at helping you raise the metabolism, lose weight, and burn body fat.
Plus all of this can be achieved by going against pretty much everything you know about “traditional diets”.
Sounds good, right?
So please check out my Metabolic Reboot Review.
Hi, I’m Partha, the founder of My Bodyweight Exercises. I’m someone who’s been passionate about exercise and nutrition for more years than I care to remember. I’ve studied, researched, and honed my skills for a number of decades now. So, I’ve created this website to hopefully share my knowledge with you. Whether your goal is to lose weight, burn fat, get fitter, or build muscle and strength, I’ve got you covered.