Flat abs. Everybody wants them. From celebs to the girl next door. When you think of the term abs, up pops Jennifer Anniston's washboard flat ones, Jessica Biel's, toned, yet feminine ones, Uma Thurman's rippling ones ... Phrases like six-pack abs, washboard flat abs, ripped abs ... bounce off your mental imagery. Tight abs, you think with green-eyed cynicism, belong on magazine covers, on athletic fields, on genetic aberrations, on those desperately lipectomized souls, and on people who treat a bowl of macrobiotic assortment of shredded leaves and grated veggies as ambrosia.
And just as you look down at that unconditioned, droopy belly of yours, with a sigh of resignation, there comes along another diet plan, promising you those washboard flat abs you've been secretly hankering for - The Abs Diet for Women - devised by David Zinczenko, the Editor of Men's Health, which is a follow-up of The Abs Diet.
According to Mr. Zinczenko, belly fat has the potential to kill you. Most of us have a tendency for storing fat in our bellies, and that is the region where the health problems of excessive weight usually start. While some people store the fat under the belt line, others have it above it. At any rate, abdominal fat doesn't simply hang around there on the belly, doing nothing. Functioning like a distinct organ, it releases harmful substances in the body. Abdominal fat is responsible for many of the health problems that strike us because it lies in the vicinity of vital organs like the liver and the heart, putting pressure on them.
The abs diet for Women is a weight loss plan that lasts for six weeks, specifically geared for women. It not only promises to help women to lose pounds, but also to flatten the abdominals, along with firming up the body. The primary component of the diet is the principles of eating, making particularly sure that the person following it has meals often enough so that her metabolism is kept revved up and ensuring that the correct, fat burning diet powerfoods are eaten, so that the dieter feels satiated all day. Deviating from its predecessor, This diet provides guidelines for counting calories, grappling with hormonal problems which hamper weight loss, and following a vegetarian diet.
So, what are the rules of the diet? To eat six small meals a day, which are evenly spaced, and to base the meals on the groups of food that are given below, which form an acronym spelling ABS DIET POWER:
A = Almonds and other nuts
B = Beans
S = Spinach and other green vegetables
D = Dairy, low-fat
I = Instant oatmeal
E = Eggs
T = Turkey and other lean meats
P = Peanut butter, all-natural
O = Olive oil
W = Whole grains
E = Extra protein, whey
R = Raspberries and other berries
According to the diet plan, by centering the meals around these Powerfoods, the body will be fueled with the required nutrients - good carbs, protein, fiber, good fat - paying particular attention to protein, because this is what builds that lean muscle which will help in burning fat faster.
This theory of the consumption of fiber-rich food and muscle-building protein at frequent intervals which is supposed to burn belly fat and rev up the metabolism is based on innumerable scientific studies cited by the author which show that more food plus more muscle is equal to less flab.
According to some medical experts, it is a sound diet overall. It could even motivate some women to make healthy lifestyle changes, since the women's abs diet also incorporates an exercise regimen which has to be followed along with the diet. Not only is the diet a balanced plan incorporating wholesome and healthy food, but also, the intake of calories, which is about 1,400-1,600 cals per day, is quite reasonable.
However, experts also caution against believing the claim made by the diet plan of getting flat abs within six weeks. Even if the diet is adhered to stringently, flat abs can never be guaranteed, because it is dependent on many other factors such as a person's body shape, activity level, as well as genetics. Although eating more meals when on a diet may sound like a great idea, some people find the idea of eating six meals a day too daunting a task. And another factor that the abs diet for Women does not seem to address directly is one of the well-known diet breakers many women dieters succumb to, the craving for sweets.
However, if you think the abs diet seems to resonate with you, and feel that eating more meals in order to weigh less makes sense, perhaps this plan may work for you. As in all diet plans, it's always a good idea to consult medical opinion before starting on one.