Every journey requires the right set of tools to be successful. In the case of stellar six pack abs, that rendezvous starts and ends with one simple thing – the food you stuff down your esophagus day-in and day-out.
In the past we’ve provided an extensive spectrum of killer ab exercises, intense workout plans, and other fitness-focused strategies to shrink your belly and carve out the inner crevices and undulations of your abs to-be. That’s all incredibly important, but the reality of summoning a svelte midsection is that the exercises you do will never matter if your diet isn’t in place to begin with.
Unless you’re a metabolic savant, diet governs all else — no questions asked.
In prep for summer I’ll be highlighting a number of nutritional and dietary tactics to help incinerate the blubber plastering your abs from plain sight — step #1, your Six Pack Abs Shopping List. It’s IMPOSSIBLE to eat lean without the right tools at your disposal. Overhaul your kitchen with this abs-inspired shopping list — broken down into fat, protein, carbs, and drinks/condiments/spices — and use it as a blueprint to stock your fridge and populate your pantry. A few things to note:
- For the sake of my sanity and to keep this from becoming ridiculously unmanageable, I’ve tried to keep this list as simple and straightforward as possible, covering mainly foods that you’d find in typical, everyday supermarkets.
- I’ve kept it as brand agnostic as possible, mainly listing food items in generic terms (e.g. oatmeal, as opposed to recommending Quaker Oats). For certain items I’ve included brand names, if I feel extremely strong about a specific product or if the category is highly variable (e.g. cereal).
- Inevitably this will NOT include every single food, brand, or product on earth. This may or may not be on purpose – certain foods, like 2% milk or wheat bread – were purposefully excluded because they don’t fall into the “Six Pack Picks” or “Belly Busters” category. They’re somewhere in the grey area of products that won’t derail your diet, but that I don’t recommend eating on an everyday basis.
- Some foods overlap. Salmon & nuts are healthy fats, but they’re also fantastic protein sources.
If you have a question about a specific product or brand that’s NOT on the list, please drop a question in the comments and I’ll absolutely weigh in on where it falls.
Otherwise, give it a read, print out a copy, clip it up on your fridge, and start revamping your kitchen ASAP (print it out on page 4).
The Six Pack Abs Shopping List – Fats
Six Pack Picks
- Natural peanut butter (e.g. Naturally More, Earth Balance)
- Almond butter (e.g. Justin’s)
- Coconut peanut butter (e.g. Earth Balance)
- Powdered peanut butter (e.g. PB2)
- Almonds (low sodium)
- Sunflower seeds (low sodium)
- Mixed nuts (low sodium)
- Flax seeds
- Flax oil
- Chia seeds
- Olive Oil/EVOO
- Virgin coconut oil
- Grass fed butter (e.g. Kerrygold)
- Natural soft cheese (goat, brie, feta)
- Almond milk
- Flax milk
- Coconut milk
- Unsweetened coconut
- Nut bars (e.g. Larabars, KIND)
- Fish Oil & Omega-3’s (e.g. Optimum Nutrition, NOW, MRM)
- JIF, Skippy, & other artificial peanut butter
- Nutella (sadly)
- Canola oil
- Corn oil
- Soybean oil
- Half & half
- Coffee creamer
- Sour cream
- Cream cheese
- Processed cheese (e.g. squeezy cheese)
- Sweetened coconut
- High sodium nuts