Now that the New Year is upon us, many people have begun to think about changing their lives for the better. One of the most common resolutions is to lose weight, but before you invest in a gym membership, it turns out that there’s a simpler way to shed some pounds!

If you are looking to obtain a flat stomach in 2018, the answer might not lie in strict dieting and exercising, but in cutting out certain foods and replacing them with healthier alternatives. After all, it’s the consumption of more calories than you can burn which leads to weight gain.

These are the nine food which you should avoid if you want a flat belly this year…

1. Sweets and Soda

Nutritionally, these foods have absolutely no value. All they contain are empty calories that are making your waistline bigger. Sugar may be addictive, but the temporary withdrawal symptoms are definitely worth it in the long run. You can always indulge on cheat day. Harvard nutritionist Walter Willett said that sweets and soda should be eliminated first if you want to reduce your belly fat.

2. Fast Food

A fast food meal from any popular restaurant chain like McDonald’s or Wendy’s is likely to contain over 2,000 calories, which is more than your recommended daily intake. The nutritional value of this food is also low, so it’s best avoided.

3. Alcohol

Just like sweets and soda, alcohol it has almost no nutritional value. It’s also got a high calory content – they don’t call it a “beer belly” for nothing! What’s more is that one drink often leads to another, which equates to a lot of empty calories.