Health benefits of dietary fiber and importance of consuming fiber rich foods is a popularly researched and discussed health topic. Curious to know why? Let’s have a look!
Before we jump to the list of fiber rich foods, it is important to understand what is fiber and why is it important to have fiber in your diet?
What is Dietary Fiber?
Technically speaking, dietary fiber is the indigestible part of plant-based food. It is also called roughage or bulk. It is called the undigestible portion as, unlike other carbs, fiber cannot be broken into the digestible sugar molecules. Dietary fiber is of two types – Soluble and Insoluble, and both types have their own set of dietary fiber benefits.
Why is it important to have fiber in your diet?
The Inclusion of fiber in your diet is extremely important. Fiber intake can help you lead a healthy life in many ways. There are various health benefits of fiber, for both soluble and insoluble, that will motivate you to include high fiber foods in your diet.
What is the difference between soluble and insoluble fiber rich foods?
From a broader perspective, almost all fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds have both soluble and as well as insoluble fiber in them. The difference is that the seeds and peel part of foods fall under the insoluble fiber category, whereas the soft inside part has the soluble fiber in it. Also, soluble fiber rich foods absorb water whereas the insoluble fiber rich foods do not.
Fiber rich foods you can include in your diet:
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Oatmeal is a very good source of fiber. You can easily include oatmeal in your diet as a breakfast option. You can add some fiber rich fruits to it for added taste and health benefits
Apples & Plum Fruit –
These wonder fruits are well-known for their amazing health benefits. Apples and Plum are a rich source of fiber and you don’t need to think much about how to include these fiber rich foods in your diet. There are very easy to eat as they are or make them a part of a yummy fruit salad or even your favorite smoothie or oatmeal dish.
Blueberries and Raspberries –
They are no less than the yummy candies of nature full of nutritional value and health benefits. You can quite conveniently include these fruits rich in fiber in your daily diet. One of the best ways is a healthy dessert option. They also taste amazing when added to your breakfast bowl of muesli or oatmeal.
Nuts and Seeds –
Nuts and seeds also fall in the category high fiber foods. There are seeds you can eat and they are a rich source of fiber. These high fiber foods include peanuts, flax seeds, chia seeds etc. You can sprinkle them on your smoothie or add them to your favorite salad.
Vegetable such as Peas, Spinach and Broccoli –
Vegetables are also high fiber foods that have numerous health benefits. Steam them, boil them or cook your own healthy way to include these high fiber foods in your diet. Salads and whole-wheat pastas can be a good option. Brussels Sprouts also fall in this family of high fiber foods.
Other High Fiber Foods –
Other foods high in fiber include barley, bran, corn, grains, other vegetables like carrots, beans, and other fruits like oranges, avocado, grapes etc.
Dietary Fiber Benefits:
Important health benefits of consuming foods rich in dietary fiber include –
- Helps reduce the overall cholesterol level
- Can help keep diabetes conditions in control by not contributing to the sugar level spikes that cause type 2 diabetes
- Promotes weight loss and helps in weight management Consuming fiber rich foods make you feel full and thus you may refrain from consuming higher calories. Fiber has just 2 calories per gram of intake as against proteins and cards which contribute 4 calories per gram each. Thus it’s a good way to feel full with low calories intake, which may ultimately contribute to weight loss in the long run.
- Helps guard against constipation and helps in digestion process
- Helps healthy bowel movements.
You must remember that knowing the health benefits of something doesn’t mean that you can cure your health issues on your own. Therefore, in the case of any specific diet needs, it is important to consult a nutritionist or health expert that can resolve your fiber rich diet or dietary fiber supplements related queries.