Fiber is a type of indigestible carbs present in food and is also called roughage. It has a variety of health advantages, including weight loss and better digestive health. Those with a diet high in fiber are less likely to develop chronic diseases and death.
Types of Fiber
Insoluble fiber, soluble fiber, and prebiotic fiber are all essential to our health and well-being. Here’s why — and which foods have them. There are three forms of fiber, and we need some of each to thrive.
We may list down three types of fiber and each seem to play a unique role in our body. They are namely:
- Soluble fiber
- Insoluble fiber
- Prebiotic fiber
This type of fiber dissolves in water to form a gel-like material. It can help lower blood cholesterol and glucose levels. Soluble fiber is found in oats, peas, beans, apples, citrus fruits, carrots, barley and psyllium.
Soluble fibers include gums, pectins, psyllium, beta-glucans and others.
Insoluble fiber is found in foods such as wheat bran, vegetables, and whole grains. It adds bulk to the stool and appears to help food pass more quickly through the stomach and intestines.
Insoluble fibers include lignin and cellulose.
Prebiotic are fibers that aren’t digestible by your body but can help good bacteria grow in your gut. Since your body doesn’t digest these plant fibers, they travel to your lower digestive tract to be a food source for the healthy bacteria in your gut.
Prebiotic fiber include Bananas, onion and garlic.
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How much fibre do we require each day?
The recommended daily intake of fibre is approximately 38 grams for males and 35 grams for females. This provides the desirable health benefits to the body.
Benefits of Fiber
Soluble fiber is known to help lower the bad LDL cholesterol levels in the blood. Hence it becomes quiet useful in the cardiovascular health.
Fiber plays a major role in promoting skin health. It helps in the elimination of toxins via the gastro-intestinal tract instead of through the skin. Hence the skin becomes smooth and clear.
Those who consume a high fiber and low calorie diet are known to report weight loss. Therefore fiber may play a vital role in the obesity reduction programs.
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Gut Microbiome Health
Our gut is actually home to millions of bacteria that perform a number of healthy functions. Surprisingly, it has been discovered that these microbes feed on fiber and hence establishes a healthy colony.
Dietary fiber is known to play a useful role in the digestive process. This enables the stool to be well formed and be eliminated with ease. Hence its useful in the prevention of constipation. Since the fiber also absorbs water, it also may help in the case of diarrhea.
The role of fiber in the prevention of cardiac disease is supposed to come from its ability to lower both blood pressure and cholesterol. Fiber also makes you feel full. This helps you eat less and can result in weight loss.
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Plant-based foods are rich in antioxidants that are known to help neutralize the damaging effects of free radicals. The free radicals are suspected to help promote DNA damage in our cells leading to cancer genesis. Consumption of plant-based foods high in dietary fiber may reduce your cancer risk.
Blood Sugar Regulation
Fiber may help control our blood glucose. This is because our body is incapable of absorbing and decomposing fiber. It does not lead to high blood sugar as other carbohydrates can. That helps keep our blood glucose levels within our target range.
Blood Pressure Regulation
Consuming a high-fiber diet helps lower cholesterol, blood pressure, and blood sugar. The fiber helps prevent the constriction of the arteries due to clogging.
Fiber promotes health and longevity in many ways, because it improves good intestinal bacteria, helps control weight and prevents chronic disease.
A diet high in fiber can actually promote a healthy lifestyle and longevity. This is due to the impact it has on the health of most body systems, such as cardiovascular, digestive and immune health. As a result, there is less chance of developing chronic degenerative disorders.
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High Fiber Foods List
People need to obtain soluble and insoluble fiber from their food. Eating a diet rich in a variety of fiber means getting lots of fruits, veggies, nuts, legumes, etc. in their daily diet programs. Here are a few helpful sources that you can integrate into your diet:
- Brussel sprouts
- Brown rice
- Barley etc.
We can now see that the consumption of processed and refined foods are denying our body the vital fiber that we need for healthy living. That may be why we are facing a pandemic of proliferation of lifestyle diseases. All these diseases are therefore preventable and reversible as long as we observe the correct natural nutrition.
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