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A few small changes really can slim your midsection, but not because foods can "burn" belly fat. "I hate to bust the bubble on this one, but flat belly foods aren’t exactly a thing - especially when it comes to the idea that you can 'spot train' certain areas of your body through the foods you eat," says Jaclyn London, M.S., R.D., C.D.N, Nutrition Director at the Good Housekeeping Institute.

That said, some easy tweaks can reduce bloating and set you up for healthier habits both now and in the long term, without resorting to crazy (and dangerous) dieting techniques.

"Consider adding sources of potassium, calcium, and magnesium to your diet, and cutting back on sneaky sources of sodium," London says. "The easiest place to start: Make your daily snacks veggie- and fruit-based, like an apple with nut butter; crudites with hummus and tzatziki, berries with yogurt, or swap a sweet potato or leftover roasted squash for bread in a sandwich. This naturally ups the mineral content and provides extra fiber for fewer grams of sodium overall."

For short-term debloating, she advises going easy on the cruciferous veggies (like kale and broccoli), legumes, and leafy greens. Even though they're extremely a nutritious choice most of the time, these fiber-rich foods can lead to some gas pain depending on how hydrated you are and how much fiber you usually eat. But if your goal is to lose weight overall, eating more real, wholesome foods and getting active is always a smart way to go. In the meantime, try these easy, science-backed changes for a flatter belly: