High Fiber Foods You Will Actually Enjoy
Fiber is a naturally occurring carbohydrate that your body is not able to fully digests, so it passes through your intestines keeping your colon healthy and your stools soft and easy to pass. This cleansing carbohydrate is contained in fruits, vegetables, grains and beans. Below is a closer look at the important role fiber plays in your diet and how simple changes such as eating a high fiber cereal for breakfast each day will help you get the amount you need on a daily basis.
How much fiber should you consume each day?
The average person only gets around 15 grams each day which is quite low considering that the recommended amount for women is around 25 grams per day and 38 grams per day for men. Although this may not seem like the big of a difference, not having the adequate amount of fiber in your daily diet can lead to digestive problems, constipation, and increase your risk of high cholesterol, diabetes, hemorrhoids, bloating, and gas.
What are some signs that you are not getting enough fiber?
There are many signs that are a good indicator that you are not getting the fiber you need on a daily basis. When your body does not have enough of this cleansing carbohydrate, you will have the sensation of being hungry as your bodies way of naturally telling you it is deficient. When this instinctual response for craving more fiber is misinterpreted as hunger, you tend to snack on high calorie foods which can lead to weight gain. Other signs that you need to adjust your diet are constipation because your bowels cannot easily pass waste and lethargy. And your body is spending more energy on digestion instead of giving you the boost you need to successfully make it through your day.
How much fiber does a high fiber cereal contain?
Most cereals have some amount of fiber, but not all are considered to be high fiber. To identify a high fiber cereal make sure it is made from whole grains and check the label on the box to see how many grams it has per serving. A high fiber cereal is considered any cereal that has 25 to 50 percent of your daily fiber. Whole grain cereals often have a reputation of being bland and dry, but with a growing awareness of the importance of fiber, there are now many cereals that are high in fiber and have a sweet, crunchy, and desirable taste. Look for increased fiber content in brands like Kashi, Barbara’s Bakery, and Archer Farms.
Are fiber supplements better than the fiber found in food?
Naturally occurring sources are best because they tend to be less abrasive on your body. When you consume fiber in a supplement form, you are often getting chemically processed and manufactured sources. If you have a hard time getting your daily amount of grams from plants, beans, and grains, it is helpful to incorporate a supplement into your diet. However, you should strive to get most of your fiber from naturally occurring food sources or from natural supplements found in health food stores.
What are some other good sources of fiber?
Any fruit, vegetable, bean, or whole grain that you eat has fiber. However, if you prefer to remove the skin from your fruits and vegetables, like apples or potatoes, you are missing out on fiber content. Here are some high fiber foods you can add to your breakfast, lunch, snacks, and dinner to increase your fiber content.
- Raspberries at 8 grams per cup.
- Strawberries at 3 grams per cup.
- Peas at 14 grams per cup.
- Acorn squash at 9 grams per cup.
- Almonds at 4 grams per cup.
- Black beans at 15 grams per cup.
While it may sound like a lot of work to monitor your daily fiber intake, it actually only takes finding a few foods you enjoy and will eat regularly to get the correct amount your body needs. Once you increase the amount you are eating each day, you will feel less bloated and gassy, have more energy, feel fuller longer, and significantly reduce your risk of diet related disease.