Trying to lose weight by adopting a low fat diet? Well, you may be committing the biggest mistake of your 'weight loss regime', says an Oz fitness expert.
Celebrity trainer James Duigan, whose clients include model Elle Macpherson, said, "I see so many people trying their best and it''s just not working because they don't understand that it's not fat that makes you fat, it's sugar and it's carbohydrates."
"You need a healthy balanced diet with fish and chicken and meat and vegetables and berries and nuts and things like that. [Low-fat diets] just don't work - it's not sustainable. You need to look at how you can keep yourself happy and healthy throughout your life," Stuff.co.nz quoted him as saying.
Duigan, whose second book Clean & Lean: Flat Tummy Fast! is out, has suggested some small steps one can follow for a flattened stomach.
Don't overcook your food as you'll kill off or reduce the nutrient content. Try to make sure around 50 percent of the food on your plate is raw. If you can stomach it, eat all your vegetables raw.
Don't buy cheap meat - organic meat is more expensive, but it also contains less toxic junk such as antibiotics. If you can afford only one organic thing make sure it's meat.
Don't eat foods that weaken your abdominal wall, as this will make it slack and lead to a protruding stomach. Foods that can weaken your abdominal wall often contain gluten.
Avoid sugar, in all its forms, as it fattens your mid-section.
Make sure you eat enough fibre. A lack of fibre will lead to inflammation in the bowel. Eat plenty of vegetables (ideally raw) and drink at least two litres of still, room temperature water every day.
Duigan has suggested having the occasional 'cheat' meal, so you can eat a piece of cake or a brownie and actually help your weight loss.
"Feed your soul because you can't live your whole life in denial. And it helps the fat-burning process, it can boost your metabolism and get you leaner the next day. The key is to keep it to one meal," he said.
Another factor for a healthy lifestyle is reducing stress, he added.