5 Best Carb Sources For A Flat Belly

Best Diet For Flat Belly

Best Diet For Flat Belly

Why We Need Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates are essential for life. The brain and nervous system require a continual supply of glucose. When dietary carbohydrate supply is low, lean mass will be used for energy.

The American Dietetic Association established a minimum daily requirement of 130 grams of carbohydrates. Of course, size, activity level and other micronutrients intake will affect this daily requirement. Let’s look at a runner. If a marathon runner only ate 130 grams of carbs a day they would use their already low muscle mass for energy, becoming weak and sick.

130 grams for someone like me, petite, may keep them from obtaining a six-pack. Using the right amount of carbohydrates, at the right time and using specific carbohydrates are what will make you your absolute leanest. The best part is that the leanness is sustainable and if you add a couple of unwanted pounds on a bad weekend or vacation it will only take a few tweaks to get you back to bikini ready!

I believe most people, myself included, use foods for comfort instead of for energy. I love to eat and I often make food a social event. Many of us food lovers abuse the use of carbohydrates using them as a stimulant, rather than to fuel our brian and nervous system. When is the last time you felt sluggish and thought of a carb-loaded snack to boost your energy levels?

Truth be told, fat is a major contributor to sotiety and does an outstanding job at keeping you from hitting that mid-afternoon wall…more on fat tomorrow.

Your Glycemic Index

Glycemic Index is a measure of the effect of food on blood-sugar levels. If a food is high on the GI scale, it means that food will cause your blood sugars to rise quickly after ingesting the meal. With a spike in blood sugar, insulin is signaled and storage is inevitable.

Fruits and non-starchy vegetables will not be discussed today as these are vital for optimal health and wellness. Instead, we will discuss starchy complex carbohydrates that play a key role in energy and recovery. Use these foods for those two purposes around your workouts and you will have a very successful training and nutrition program.

My Top 5 Carbohydrate Choices For Stripping Fat

Quinoa

This grain-like crop is my absolute favorite food! Quinoa is appreciated for its nutritional value as a complete protein, dietary fiber, phosphorus, magnesium and iron. Quinoa is also GLUTEN-FREE and can be used in so many recipes.
Magnesium – this mineral helps relax blood vessels, decreasing incidence of migraines and also helps prevent cardiovascular diseases.
Iron- Iron is an essential mineral that is required for human life. Not having enough iron can lead to anemia. The most common symptoms of anemia are weakness and fatigue — one reason people who are iron deficient get tired easily is because their cells don’t get enough oxygen. Pregnant women, young women during their reproductive years and children tend to be at the highest risk of iron deficiency. Iron deficiency anemia in children is associated with poor neurodevelopment.

FUN FACT: this crop is actually a relative of  leafy green vegetables and has recently been reported to be better for you than vegetables.

Sweet Potatoes

Besides simple starches, sweet potatoes are rich in complex carbohydrates, dietary fiber, beta carotene (a vitamin A equivalent nutrient), vitamin C and vitamin B6. Pink, yellow and green varieties are high in carotene. Sweet potatoes have anti-oxidative and anti-inflammatory qualities and have the ability to actually improve blood sugar levels.

FUN FACT: The softer, orange variety is often called a yam in parts of North America. The sweet potato is botanically very distinct from the other vegetable called a yam, which is native to Africa and Asia . In North America, both titles are displayed for the orange vegetable (Wikipedia Foundation, Inc)

Brown Rice

This whole grain is far superior to white rice as it still contains the germ and bran layer that contains fiber, magnesium, vitamin B1 and B3, and also iron. One cup of brown rice will provide you with 88% of your daily value of magnesium.

Oats

Oatmeal is rich in fiber, selenium, tryptophan, phosphorus, vitamin B1, magnesium and also contain protein. Oatmeal can lower blood cholesterol because of its soluble fiber content. Oatmeal is rich in soluble and non-soluble fiber.
Insoluble Fiber- absorbs water for easier passage through the intestines and allows for easier passage of stool.
Soluble Fiber- breaks down as it passes through the digestive tract, forming a gel that traps substances responsible for increasing cholesterol.

FUN FACT: Instant oatmeal is pre-cooked and dried, usually with sweetener and flavouring added.

Legumes

Legumes have significant amounts of fiber and are also high in protein, complex carbohydrates, folate and iron. Beans have been proven to fight cancer, benefit people with diabetes and help to lower cholesterol.

FUN FACT: Legumes contain relatively low quantities of the essential amino acid methionine. To compensate, some vegetarian cultures serve legumes along with grains, which are low in the essential amino acid lysine, which legumes contain (Wikipedia Foundation, Inc).

 







Comments

  1. Waulene says:

    Flavia,

    Are these meal plans based on combining mostly (or only) protein and carbs for morning or workout times, and mostly (or only) protein and fat for later in the day?

    Thank you,

    W-

  2. Anna Smith says:

    Hey Flavia, thanks for the great articles! I purchased the meal plans and am really enjoying them. I was already pretty much doing them, thanks to Yours and VInce’s advice. One question, I notice Vince recommends much more carbs than you do, is this because men need more than women? If you would rather reply to me via e-mail just tell me and I will e-mail you my question. Thanks!

    • Flavia says:

      It totally depends on your goals. If you are looking to burn fat, eating less carbs is recommended. Vince is almost always talking about building muscle and that’s why he recommends a lot of carbs. He attracts mostly skinny guys that want to pack on muscle. I want to ensure that women build muscle while losing fat at the same time :) Great question.

  3. Elizabeth says:

    I’m considering your meal plans. I see that you offer them at different calorie levels. Are those based on 1200 calories (for example) per meal or day?

  4. Yanette says:

    Do your meals mainly consist of rediculous things that can’t be found in most groceries like sword fish or shakes with protein powder that only you sell or some chain store that is rediciously expensive?

  5. lola says:

    Hi Flavia, I am starting on your DEADLINE diet. I feel the guide is missing important info though, which is why i’ve been double checking your blog. But I still don’t have the answers…..
    In the Deadline Diet a person’s daily intake of carbs, protein and fat are extremely PRECISE. But one SINGLE item of food is NOT precisely one food group or another, right?
    For instance say I eat a cup of QUINOA, this would contain: 22.27 grams of Protein, 9.86 grams of Fat and 117.13 grams of Carbs.
    So TWO questions please Flavia…
    a) When you say eat 205 g Carbs (example only), I presume you DO NOT mean 205g of quinoa. Therefore you are suggesting we investigate every single food on the internet and calculate the protein/carb/fat ratios for each one? (Seems like a lot of work for a professional working woman)
    b) You have quinoa listed as a TOP carb choice. When I eat it, do I add or ignore the protein content to my daily Protein limit?
    Your feedback would be greatly appreciated.
    Hopefully this will help imrove your written explanation of the diet too :)
    Many thanks!!

    • Flavia says:

      Hey Lola. Keep things simple. There are charts for each macronutrient. Use each the macronutrient it suggests and don’t count the other components in them. Be aware that quinoa is in the carb family and use it for the amount of carbs you need. Try to get the calories around what is recommended but an extra 50-100 when you are working out hard wont matter. Don’t take too much time or else you won’t succeed. EXAMPLE: 4oz of meat usually has 22-25 g of protein –> 1/2 cup of rice is usually 20 grams –> 1oz nuts usually has 12-16 g of fat. Start looking at portions and their grams, then add up the calories and you should see it be around the amount you need.

      Hope that helps. Key to understand what you should be eating and what the amount starts to look like.

      • lola says:

        I like ‘keep it simple’. Love it in fact! Thank you!
        One final thing….Which document has the macronutrient chart please?
        Best
        :) Lola

  6. Mandy says:

    Hey Flavia,
    Let me first say thank you thank you thank you for creating a program that I LOVE!!! I have been following it for the last 2 weeks and my results are simply amazing. It has never been so fun and rewarding to work out!…

    I do have a question for you.. I noticed on the macronutrients list under carbs/beans that there are many beans that you didn’t list.. examples great northern beans, red kidney beans, exc.. So my questions is are the others you didn’t list okay to eat? I really love kidney beans so I’m hoping so!!

    Thanks again for all your advice!!

    :D Mandy

  7. Kassandra says:

    Sweet potatoes are good. Regular potatoes seem to be on the “to be avoided list.” Where does pumpkin fit in?

    • Flavia says:

      Pumpkin is great! It is a great fat source, not carb source. Regular potatoes are not horrible, just have them sparringly and after a workout is best.

      • Kassandra says:

        That’s interesting. I never would have picked pumpkin as a fat source. I love pumpkin but have been avoiding it as it doesn’t seem to appear on any lists. Now that I know, I will use appropriately. Thanks for the information :)

  8. Elizabeth says:

    Hey Flavia,
    I just came across your website yesterday and I am SO glad I did. I have been working out like a maniac 5 days a week since January and had reduced my caloric intake to 1400 a day to try to drop some fat weight. After reading up on some of your nutrition tips and talking to the head trainer at my gym I am making a change! I have a deadline of April 23rd – so here’s hoping I can improve on my own. I am trying out a bunch of your workouts too (did single leg deadlifts with the smith machine today, after my regular deadlifts.. holy moly those are hard!). If I get some success with these things I will definitely be purchasing your programs and meal plans. Thanks for posting so many tips!

    Also, when I saw you went to Mac I had that much more respect for you! :)
    (I’m at Mac now for my masters in occupational therapy).

    • Flavia says:

      Nice! I did go to Mac, are you working out in that gym or are you somewhere else in the city? Thanks for reaching out Elizabeth.

      • Elizabeth says:

        Hey Flavia,
        I work out at phoenix fitness in Ancaster. The gym at Mac drives me crazy! I can’t stand being the only woman on the floor with a bunch of meatheads working out in packs who all have poor form and are going to kill their backs. So I got a membership at Phoenix and I LOVE it!

  9. Rhonda says:

    I purchased your meal plans and in a couple of days you have veg juice and that there is a recipe. I couldn’t find the recipe. Also, is there a substitute for the recipe, i really don’t like veg juice.

    thanks….love your workouts. I just started last Monday and started with two circuits. My legs were so sore the next day, i could barely walk or use the bathroom without having to literally fall onto the commode. :)

    • Flavia says:

      Hey Rhonda, the recipes are called Detox/Green Drinks. If you still don’t have them go back into the members site and download them again. Everything that you have purchased will forever be on the site of you to grab over and over :)

      • Rhonda says:

        Thanks….it was kinda late for me when typing the post. I meant to say in a couple of places in the meal plans it called for veg juice and that I did the entire circuit but only did two sets each for Day 1.

  10. Teresa says:

    It would be helpful to have a link for the best healthy and low GI carbs. If you can supply a link to a list that would be great. Reason I ask is…aren’t sweet potatoes carbs and not veggie? One of your recipe meals called for P-V-F, but sweet potatoes were included so I’m confused. I love veggies so I’m thinking zucchini, green beans, spinach, kale, etc. I don’t want to consume the wrong foods at the wrong time so please advise.
    Also, is your husband going to do a similar program for men? My husband would love it!!!
    Loving your program and all the detail you put into it-thank you!

  11. Mallory says:

    Hi Flavia,
    I am on week three of Curvaliicious, and its great! I have been following the nutrition guide, but its giving me a bit of constipation. Before the program, I ate very healthily but ate a lot more whole grains and a bit less protein. Any suggestions for how to cure this while staying on your nutrition plan?

    Thanks!
    Mallory

    • Anna G says:

      Hi Mallory, I experienced some constipation when I first starting eating more protein as well. I wasn’t eating as much veggies as I should have been but now I eat 1 – 2 cups of veggies with every meal and I always go regularly. Make sure you are drinking plenty of water as well.

    • Flavia says:

      I agree with Anna, veggies!!! and a lot of water too. 2 servings of veggies and 3 L of water (at least) will cure that right away….also so coffee always does the trick when I am travelling.

  12. yesi says:

    hello flavia,

    i just wanted to ask how do i know how much a serving is, how many grams makes a serving of a foot item and how do i measure this stuff? do i need to buy a small scale to weigh food items?, i know it may b a dumb questionand sorry for asking, i just want to make sure i get the nutrition part right, oh and i wanted to ask what you think of the jay robb egg whites protein shake? well if u have tried it, thats what i purchased but i noticed u reccomend another protein shake??, hope to hear fom u soon and i love all the info u post for all of us :)

    • Flavia says:

      You would have to do your own portions for your own weight. I have them all calculated for the meal plans that are associated with a program. It depends on what you are trying to acheive, fat loss or muscle building or both. It also matter how much you work out. IF you are working out 3-6 times a week, Multiply your body weight by 11-15 depending on how much you are doing and what the outcome is – to figure out your calories intake for the day.

      The less you workout, the less lower your calories. For protein, you want it to be around 30% of your calories. 1 gram of Protein = 4 calories

  13. yesi says:

    hi me again another quick question as far as the ground beef and eggs in the morning ae they cooked seperately or is the aw egg mixed into the ground beef prior to cooking?

    thank you for you time, i greatly appreciate it

  14. yesi says:

    hi falvia<
    can i eat hummus as a carb for the curve meals? or r they potein?

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