Q: I’ve been reading about this new Flat Belly Diet and it sounds too good to be true. What do you think?
A: The Flat Belly Diet is the hot new diet, and pretty much it details the basic premise for losing weight: Eat healthy whole foods in moderation. Do you need to buy another book to tell you that?
The gimmick of this diet (all diets have one) is the promise that eating a diet higher in mono-unsaturated fats will help you lose weight specifically in the abdominal region. This a very bold claim and unfortunately there is no evidence to back it up.
When body fat is lost it tends to disappear from all over the body. There has been one small study that showed that all things being equal, people who watched their calories and incorporated more fiber into their diet, did tend to reduce their waist size by more than people who consumed the same calories but less fiber.
Dr. Brent Ridge is the health expert for Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia. You can call and ask him a question live every Tuesday at 2 p.m. Eastern on Sirius Satellite Radio, Channel 112 (1.866.675.6675). You can also follow along as he learns to grow his own food and raise goats on his farm in upstate New York by visiting www.beekman1802.com.
Got a health question for Dr. Brent? E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.