Posts tagged with "ILana Muhlstein"

How to Reduce Belly Fat

Top 5 tips by Registered Dietitian Ilana Muhlstein on how people can reduce belly fat for bathing suit season

  1. What are foods to eat to reduce belly fat?

Water filled veggies are great for helping you lose weight, and stay regular so you can relieve bloat. Some great examples are tomatoes, cucumbers and zucchinis that are rich in potassium, which can also help release water retention you may be carrying in your stomach.

  1. What are some foods to avoid?

Research has shown that cortisol, our stress hormone, can cause abdominal weight gain. Meaning that if you are stress eating, you will likely not just gain weight, but gain it in your lower stomach. Therefore, it is a good idea to ab-void stress eating in general and find better coping strategies for dealing with stress. Examples are calling a friend, taking a walk or long shower, doing yoga or another workout, meditating and/or journaling.
And the foods we reach for when stressed are typically higher in fat, refined carbohydrates, and sugar, which can be addictive and lead to excess weight gain. Therefore, it is a good idea to keep these trigger foods out of sight and out of mind, and not buy and bring them home, especially during stressful times.

  1. How to keep belly fat off for good?

Clear the counter tops of sliced bread, jars of cookies, bowls of candies, and boxes of cereal. And replace it with great things that can be helpful immediately if feeling hungry like a water cooler, boxes of cherry tomatoes (my daughter reaches into these daily for a quick snack), and a bowl of apples. You should also have things out that keep you thinking about your healthy lifestyle. Some examples are a tea or coffee station; some veggies that need cooking like spaghetti squash, turnips, and onions; and a Shakeology or smoothie station (if there is still room).

  1. What are your favorite core-flattening recipes?

I like to make a chocolate Shakeology shake with half a cup of water, half a cup of coconut water, ice, and a scoop each of the Shakeology Power Greens and Digestive Health Boosts. This recipe tastes like delicious chocolate ice cream, but is only 250 calories. It also has 20g of protein which helps stave off hunger and cravings, and 13g of fiber which helps keep you regular, (because constipation is definitely not “core flattering”).

  1. How do you limit sugar intake?

I always keep a little “mommy drawer” that contains mint gum in the kitchen. I find that if someone is craving chocolate, brushing his teeth with mint toothpaste could crush that craving. And chewing gum makes it really hard to also chew a mouthful of pasta or teriyaki beef stir fry.
Also the PB& J sandwich swapped for a PB&J Wonder Whip. In a bowl, add plain Greek yogurt, powdered peanut butter, and honey or stevia to taste. Whip it up very well, and top with sliced grapes or strawberries.

For additional professional opinions on this topic, we highly recommend visiting Dr. Michael Ruscio’s blog (and also downloading his latest book, Healthy Gut, Healthy You).

360, 360 Magazine, Vaughn Lowery, Ilana Muhlstein

Boost Your Metabolism to Speed Up Weight Loss

ILana Muhlstein, MS, RDN

Metabolism is essentially the rate in which we burn food for energy. Therefore, a slow metabolism doesn’t burn the calories from food as quickly and the excess of calories consumed will be quicker to store as fat. On the upside, someone with a slow metabolism will likely feel more full and energized from less calories and should therefor focus on filling and satisfying low calorie foods.

Cruciferous veggies like Brussels sprouts, broccoli, kale, cauliflower, bok choy, and cabbage are a great example. They are very high in fiber, which can help absorb excess fat and calories and promote elimination. These vegetables also contain iron and calcium, which and both minerals are essential for a healthy working metabolism.

Whey protein, found in protein shake powders like shakeology, are also great for boosting metabolism. Protein requires extra energy to breakdown, causing your body to burn excess calories and jolt your fat burning potential. The lean protein can also stimulate our satiety hormones and contribute to feeling full and satisfied which can prevent overeating. Whey protein also contains leucine, an amino acid, that can help build muscle, which can improve our metabolic rate, aka speed in which we burn calories.

Beans and legumes, like lentils, are amazing for boosting metabolism. They are very rich in plant based protein and iron, both essential for maintaining a healthy metabolism. Additionally, beans and legumes are rich sources of resistant starch. This starch is harder for the body to break down, meaning that it helps keep us fuller longer, can lower our blood sugar response, and encourage our body to burn more calories to break it down. The high fiber content can also help reduce fat storage in the body and improve elimination, which is very helpful for enhancing a positive metabolic system. 

 It has been studied and shown that your metabolism works about 2x stronger in the first half of the day, compared to the second half. You are eating food at the same time that you are engaged in your daily activities which is ideal for burning more calories. Even walking to and from the bathroom, or getting in and out of the car is more calorie-burning than sitting on a couch. In fact, using your brain and reading emails has been shown to burn more calories than watching TV. Therefore, the more you eat in the first half of the day, and the less you eat later at night, the better your metabolism will work.