The Importance of A High Fiber Diet

fiber rich food

Do you get enough fiber in your diet?

Fiber is only obtained through plant foods like fruits and vegetables. High fiber diets have a tendency to make people feel more full after eating, which could lead to less overall consumption altogether. Research also shows that the higher fiber concentration may be linked to lower blood sugar levels.

The Benefits of More Fiber in Your Diet

Increased fiber in a diet is linked with lower risks for heart disease, colon cancer, and is also associated with better weight control. Plus, it makes people feel fuller and less prone to overeating.

Fiber cannot be digested by the human body, but it does slow down the absorption of carbohydrates and other nutrients. This obviously contributes to a lower likelihood of blood glucose spikes, thus reducing the risk for Type 2 diabetes, or helping diabetics to manage their condition. It is therefore important to consume good carbs that come from plant food.

Carbs that contain fiber are absorbed more slowly by our bodies. This means that they don’t result in dramatic spikes in blood glucose levels, and therefore have lower glycemic indexes. Examples of such carbohydrates are the ones that come from fruits, vegetables, beans and whole grains.

Bad carbs on the other hand, are associated with being processed and refined, and include white rice and white bread. Diabetics are generally advised to reduce their consumption of these.

It is therefore unfortunate that high fiber is not typically a part of most people's diets. Instead, it is more normal to have refined, or white carbs. Most people are accustomed from a very young age to have products made from white flour, or to eat white bread and buns, as well as white bread.

The word white denotes that the food in question is processed or refined. While grain based, the food doesn't contain much fiber.

That's why you probably will have to put in some effort and planning in order to obtain the right amount of fiber in your diet. Make sure to eat plenty of vegetables of fruits at least five servings per day. Avoid refined, white grains, and instead opt for whole grains in your bread, pasta, rolls and buns. And finally, make sure to have beans and/or bean products every day as well.

These precautions are doubly important because of the ubiquity of bad carbs. Wherever you go, you're going to find added sugars in addition to white grain products. These added sugars are what are known as caloric sweeteners. They refer to the syrups and sugars added to processed foods like baked products and sweet beverages.

While high in calories, they don't have much nutritional value otherwise. You probably don't even know just how much added sugar is a part of most people's diets.

Plus, people tend to consume starchy carbs from potatoes. The sugars, starches and white grains all provide quick energy to the body, which isn't much use unless you're playing some form of sport or participating in a physical activity.

Author
Health One Family Medicine

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