Can you imagine the Beatles without George Harrison? Fleetwood Mac without the Mac? Stirring a underrated element into a winning mix can take things from great to genius. As it is with pop culture, so it is with making a Zero Belly meal. By now, naturally you have your Best Spices for Weight Loss and your Fats That Make You Skinny. You may not have thought of adding these underrated superfoods to your pantry, and you should — not only will they elevate any number of recipes, they’ll help you slim down quick. Here they are, compliments of the new Zero Belly Cookbook!
This dark, thick honey produced in New Zealand may be a wonder drug in addition to a superfood. Researchers have found it to have antibacterial properties and may even kill antibiotic-resistant strep and MRSA! How? Dark honey has higher levels of antioxidants than light, and manuka seems to have an extra punch. What this means for a flat belly: antioxidants repair tissue damage and soothe inflammation throughout the body, which can result in a leaner you
If you’ve deprived yourself of soy sauce because you can’t stomach the gluten, try this substitute, which is also made from soybeans but is gluten free. Sayonara bloating, hello flat belly. It has a richer, less salty taste than traditional soy sauce. Go for a low-sodium or lite version, which can cut the sodium content by half.
You know wasabi as that paste that’s a pleasurably painful chaser for sushi, but it originates as a root vegetable that has cancer-fighting and heart-strengthening properties. According to a study published in the International Journal of Food Microbiology, wasabi has been effective in fighting the bacteria H. pylori, a bad gut bug that’s been linked to the formation of ulcers. Kizami wasabi is a sauce made of the chopped root, and adding it to Asian-inflected dishes will help balance your good gut bugs, banishing bloat.
Kizami Wasabi Mix
1 cup scallion whites, minced
1 oz fresh ginger, minced
1 cup kizami wasabi
1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
3 oz extra virgin olive oil
Heat olive oil in a pan. Add scallions and ginger. Sweat for 3-5 minutes until the scallions are softened but not translucent. Add kizami wasabi and rice vinegar. Stir to incorporate and cool immediately
Kale is the Jennifer Lawrence of superfoods, acclaimed and enjoyed by millions. Trouble is, it risks becoming the Jennifer Lawrence of superfoods, at risk of numbing overexposure. If you find the prospect of another kale salad as exciting as a plain chicken breast, opt for lacinato kale, a.k.a. black or dinosaur kale. Its dark, curly leaves are sweeter-tasting and more tender than the regular variety, but it has the same nutritional properties, packed with fiber to boost satiety and nutrients that can turn off your belly-fat genes.
It’s the Spanish term for pumpkin seed, and if you consider them just jack o’lantern innards, you’re in for a treat. One ounce of seeds has eight grams of protein — more than an egg or almonds — and is rich in flat-belly nutrients like fiber, zinc and potassium, which are key to muscle building and recovery. Sprinkle them in salads or over oats.
Sofrito is a base sauce used in Spanish, Portuguese, and Latin American cooking. Preparations may vary, but it typically consists of aromatic ingredients cut into small pieces and sauteed in oil. In the Zero Belly Cookbook, our version uses ginger, hot chili pepper and extra virgin olive oil — ingredients proven to target belly fat — as a delicious addition to omelets, fish, meat dishes and more.
Zero Belly Sofrito
Yield: 1 cup
Cook time: 8 minutes
1 serrano chili
1⁄3 cup roughly chopped shallots (about 2 large or 3 small)
1⁄3 cup fresh, roughly chopped ginger
1⁄2 cup extra virgin olive oil
• Take the stems off of the serranos and cut in half. Take the seeds out and slice thin. Place the chilis, shallots and ginger in a food processor and chop until finely minced.
• Heat the oil in a sauce pot on medium heat and add the shallots, ginger and chillies.
• Reduce the heat to low and cook until the shallots and aromatics are very soft, about 8 minutes.
• Take off the heat and cool.
• Store in a BPA-free glass jar in the fridge or up to one week.