Introducing the 'DASH diet', which new studies say is the best diet to get rid of belly fat

Introducing the 'DASH diet', which new studies say is the best diet to get rid of belly fat

Glorious glutes and bulging biceps are both great, but one thing that most people struggle with when trying to lose weight is the white whale that is belly fat. There's a reason all those random adverts you get all over your favourite sites advertise about how to get rid of belly fat, and although this isn't one of those ads, we do believe here at Food Envy that we should do our utmost to ensure you've got the best possible chance of abs.

It's the least we can do, right? Belly fat can be the hardest type of fat to lose, and with it leading to a host of health issues such as type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, not to mention certain types of cancer, you've got plenty of non-aesthetic reasons to shed the chub.

Man measuring his gut Credit: Getty

So while there's no simple, quick-fix way to get rid of belly fat and plenty of sit-ups are definitely on the agenda, there are definitely some things you should be eating to get the six-pack of your dreams. That's where Kari D. Pilolla from California Polytechnic State University comes in - she's just published an article in ACSM's Health & Fitness Journal on this very same subject.

In said article, Pilolla notes that while we hear a lot about high-protein diets like the keto diet or intermittent fasting diets such as the famed 5:2 diet, she also points out that reducing the intake of trans and saturated fats in your diet is also pretty useful for getting rid of belly fat.

"Thus, a great start to preventing and reducing abdominal obesity is to follow a diet that encourages foods high in fibre such as vegetables, fruits, legumes, and whole grains and limits foods high in trans and saturated fats, such as fatty meats, baked goods, and highly processed foods. These recommendations are consistent with heart-healthy diets like the NIH-developed Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet."

This is where the 'DASH diet' comes in. Rather than having anything to do with speed, the DASH diet is simply a way of eating that's kind on your heart as well as your waistline. High in vegetables, fruits and grains, as well as fat-free or low-fat dairy products, fish, poultry, beans, nuts as well as heart healthy fats, the DASH has also been linked with a lower risk of depression.

A study of around 1,000 adults and their various diets for around six and a half years showed that those who were on the DASH diet had a lower risk for depression, with as much as a 11-percent decrease in depressive symptoms. While the researchers were quick to note that this was merely a correlation (rather than a clear cause-and-effect), it still makes for some pretty impressive reading.

So there you have it, folks. There's no quick fix to getting rid of the belly fat that you carry around, but with the DASH diet, you might be one step closer to the abs of your dreams.