Finally, the last food you want to make a staple of your ab diet are egg whites. As a quick and relatively cost effective form of protein, they are rapidly digested by the body so your muscle cells can get the amino acids they need.
Additionally, there are a vast number of ways to cook and prepare egg whites, further increasing your meal options while on the diet. As many dieters already know, when meal selection becomes scarce, that’s usually about the same time that dietary adherence also falls by the wayside. Anything that helps to avoid this issue is going to serve to keep you on track. The fact that egg whites don’t take long to prepare further increases the chance you’ll turn to them instead of a double cheeseburger from your local drive-thru.
Peanut butter is one of the foods that many dieters find themselves craving as they progress on their diet. And it can actually be a terrific choice when it comes to food selection in your quest for visible abs.
Two big advantages that peanut butter has to offer are that it is has a very high satiety effect and it is chock full of healthy fats. It will only take one or two tablespoons to give you hunger control that lasts for hours and help meet your good-fat requirements.
Since you likely won’t be spreading this over a bagel, consider mixing it into your oatmeal, using it to create a tasty Thai sauce recipe for your vegetable stir-fry or just eating it plain, as is.
Be sure when you purchase your peanut butter that you look for the natural variety, as they will contain fewer added sugars that can be particularly problematic when trying to lose fat around the waist.
Since you’re likely to be eating a lot of salads on your way to getting ripped abs, you need to try to make the most of these. Spinach is a nutritional powerhouse — it contains a high amount of carotenoids, such as beta-carotene and lutein, as well as quercetin, which is a phytochemical that presents antioxidant effects. In addition to that, you’ll also get folic acid, vitamin K, magnesium, manganese, and more protein from spinach than from many of the other vegetable options.
As a side note to your spinach intake: try to eat it cooked once in a while as the cooking process really serves to bring out the antioxidant effects it carries.
When it comes to the carbohydrates you do take in, you want to make the most of your allotted calories. While there are other sources that are slow digesting, free of sugar and will work for fat loss, oatmeal is going to provide you with more volume per calorie, thus helping you feel full.
At only 147 calories per cup of cooked oatmeal, it beats rice and baked potatoes, which come in at 216 and 180 calories, respectively.
To enhance the flavor of plain oatmeal, try adding in artificial sugar, cinnamon or even mixing in protein powder to really boost the taste and make it more of a complete meal.
One type of oil that many people rarely even think about eating is coconut oil, and it can actually be beneficial when added to your selection of ab foods.
The primary reason why coconut oil is a good ab food is due to its composure of medium chain triglycerides that are handled by the body differently than most other fats. They are able to be used as energy much quicker than the usual fats are, thus, if you are not eating very many carbohydrates for energy, this can help to prevent that energy slump you experience.
Don’t make the mistake of not factoring the calorie content though, it is a fat and will still supply your body with nine calories per gram. Be sure they are replacing other fats or carbohydrates in your diet, so that they’re not just added in with the ones currently there. Another interesting thing about coconut oil is that for the first week or so of consumption, it slightly bumps up the metabolism before the body adapts to it. So, even if you decide not to incorporate it into your plan long-term, using it for a week might just help give your diet that extra kick you need at this point.
If you’ve cut down your carb intake, and as you move toward the 5% to 8% body fat range, hunger will likely be an issue. Your body simply does not like being this lean and it’s going to fight you. Hunger is a good way of doing so.
Further to the point, on diets that are very low in calories (like diets full of ab foods), you are definitely going to be in a catabolic state (tissue breakdown). This can spell trouble for the muscle mass you’ve worked so hard to attain and it needs to be minimized.
The liver is the primary determinant (after total calorie intake) of whether you are in a catabolic or anabolic state. As such, the type of carbohydrates in fruit is treated slightly different than, say, the carbohydrates in rice or bread, and will send a much stronger signal to the liver to not be in a catabolic state.
You may still not be able to cross over into an anabolic state since that’s near impossible if you are eating under maintenance, but you can minimize the damage done to your tissues. Fruit will help you do this; shoot to eat one to two pieces a day.
Apples as ab food work great because they won’t raise blood sugar very much and will supply you with plenty of fiber, which helps with the hunger issue.
Low-sodium cottage cheese
Protein is an integral component to a fat-loss diet because it’s the single macronutrient that is going to promote muscle maintenance. You can cut both fat and carbohydrates down, but without enough protein your results will be less than optimal.
However, all proteins are not alike. When dieting to very low caloric digits, hunger is going to be calling your name. You want to minimize this by selecting ab foods that are going to digest the slowest and keep you satisfied the longest. Dieting on ab foods gets tough when 20 minutes after a meal, you’re ready for the next.
Cottage cheese is a terrific source of casein protein — one of the slowest digesting protein sources out there. When shopping for your cottage cheese, opt for a low-sodium variety. While salt is not necessarily always a bad thing, depending on your current health status and the rest of your diet, in the case of abs, we need to minimize water retention as best as possible.
At about 500 mg of sodium per half-cup of regular cottage cheese, water retention could prove to be an issue.