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The importance of eating fiber with each meal

6th May 2022

The importance of eating fiber with each meal

While you probably know that you should consume plenty of fiber-rich foods, you may not

realise why fiber is so important.

Taking the time to understand fiber, how it affects your health, and how to prepare your kitchen for success will help you

prepare fiber-rich meals effortlessly.

There are so many ways in which fiber benefits your health, particularly your digestive health. Be sure to include plenty of

fiber-rich foods on your plate when you prepare your meals. Besides supporting digestion and preventing blood sugar

spikes, it will help you feel satisfied and full.

Find out why fiber is essential and how you can make sure you get plenty of it with every meal in this article!

WHY WE SHOULD CONSUME FIBER DAILY

In a nutshell, dietary fiber is a plant-based carbohydrate that cannot be broken down into sugar molecules. Plant-based

foods are rich in dietary fiber. It works like a brush to gently brush your intestines as fiber slows digestive absorption.

Several health benefits are attributed to the broom-like function and the delay of absorption. Come on, let's talk about

them!

Helps to maintain stable blood sugar levels

As a result of fiber consumption, digestion is slowed. As a result, blood sugar levels can be stabilised as a slower rate of

sugar absorption can be achieved. Sugar can spike our blood sugar if absorbed too rapidly, and then drop when absorbed

too slowly.

Vegetables, fruits, and whole grains, as well as whole grains rich in fiber, prevent these spikes in blood sugar. In addition

to making you feel less than your best, blood sugar spikes can lead to other health complications, so it's always better to

avoid them.

Maintains Your Satisfaction

In addition to slowing down digestion, fiber also plays a role in signalling to your body when you're full. When we eat

foods that are low in fiber, our bodies process them very quickly and absorb them almost immediately. In the long run, this

may lead to an insatiable appetite and lack of satiety.

Food items, on the other hand, are processed and absorbed much slower if fiber is present. As a result, you can feel full

and energised for longer. Incorporating fiber into our meals can help slow down the absorption of nutrients and keep us

full longer.

Removes waste from the body

We mentioned a broomlike motion before.

Fiber, particularly insoluble fiber, acts like a broom to remove waste build-up from your intestines and colon, thereby

reducing your colon cancer risk.

Motility of the gastrointestinal tract is also affected by fiber. The purpose is to keep your intestines moving. Constipation

can be avoided by maintaining regular bowel movements.

Promotes gut health

Since the majority of our immune system is in our gut, nourishing probiotics along with prebiotic-rich foods is vital for gut

health.

Prebiotics can be found in fiber. The prebiotics, which are the essential constituents of our gut microbiome, act as food for

the probiotics. Healthy digestion and a healthy microbiome are dependent upon the balance between the two.

Maintains the health of your heart

The benefits of fiber extend to heart health as well. The digestion of food requires the release of bile acids which are

primarily composed of cholesterol.

The liver creates bile acids from cholesterol in the bloodstream, helping to lower LDL cholesterol levels. Keeping your

LDL cholesterol levels under control is important because it's the cholesterol more closely associated with increased risks

of cardiovascular disease.

A FIBER-RICH MEAL INCLUDES Plenty of foods that are rich in fiber

In order to create balanced meals using our Foundational Five system, you should ensure that your plate includes plenty

of fiber-rich foods at each meal. Your meals will be well-rounded if you follow this whole-food framework.

However, it's important to understand the different types of fiber that can be found in foods as well as their source.

Therefore, you will be able to reap those health benefits we just discussed if you are mindful and intentional about your

choices.

It's important to note that some people benefit from high fiber intakes, while others (due to certain conditions) may require

a bit less. It is important to decide how much fiber you need each day based on your individual health needs. You may

benefit from speaking with a Registered Dietitian if this is something you are concerned about.

We will now discuss the different types of fiber and the sources of each type.

Fibrous Solubilities

Let's start with soluble fibers. These fibers dissolve in water. Fermentation occurs as it passes through your intestinal

tract, and it is typically hydrophilic, meaning it loves water. In the GI tract, this fiber absorbs water and becomes gel-like.

Have you ever made chia seed pudding? Soluble fiber is present in chia seeds.

A diet rich in soluble fiber reduces cholesterol, regulates blood sugar levels, and improves digestion and immunity.

Great sources of soluble fiber include:

● beans

● most vegetables

● avocado

● sweet potato

● dried figs

● flax seed

● chia seeds

● pears

● apricots

● psyllium husk

Fiber that is insoluble

Insoluble fiber is next on the list. Instead of dissolving in water, this fiber does not. In other words, it does not change form

during digestion. Therefore, it does not absorb water like soluble fiber and cannot form a gel. On the contrary, it remains

unchanged.

Fibres that are insoluble contribute to bowel movements (because they bulk up stools), help the colon eliminate waste,

and keep the pH of the intestines balanced.

Insoluble fiber is often found in whole foods containing soluble fiber.

Among the best sources of insoluble fiber are:

● bran cereals

● beans

● lentils

● most whole grains

● vegetables like okra and corn

CAN SUPPLEMENTS BE USED?

You are probably thinking now, "Well, I saw a commercial about adding fiber to my water so I can increase my intake and

reap the health benefits." First things first, if you can consume fiber through food, this is the best way to begin.

In addition to promoting a healthy relationship with food, consuming whole foods rather than supplements also

encourages healthy eating, encourages cooking healthy, and challenges you to use what you have learned.

After you've exhausted the benefits of whole foods, fiber supplements should be the last resort. You should always

consult with a doctor or Registered Dietitian before deciding whether to take a supplement.

HOW TO BE SUCCESSFUL

So, now that you know the benefits and types of these foods, now it's time to cook!

Ensure you have some great fibre-rich foods in your pantry and fridge that you like. Start by going through those lists we

just discussed. If you know which ones you like already, then perhaps select one or two you've never tried and may enjoy.

Keep them on your shopping list for future purchases! As a result, you'll be able to use them for every meal going forward.

You should also consider the Foundational Five whenever possible when preparing your meals (protein + starchy and

sugary carbs + non-starchy carbs + fat + flavour factor) to ensure you have a balanced plate. In this way, you can

determine what foods are excellent sources of fiber, as well as what you may be lacking.

Practice makes perfect, and you'll be able to recall what fibre-rich foods can be added to different types of meals with

ease!

HOW CAN YOU EAT A WELL-BALANCED MEAL WITH EASE?

There's much more to think about than just eating a fibre-rich diet when it comes to creating a well-balanced lifestyle!

Learning to nourish yourself in a way that works uniquely for you allows you to feel empowered and confident when

making food choices. No more second-guessing your food choices or feeling overwhelmed by all the nutrition information

out there. You can navigate your health and wellness with ease and balance.

To get started, take our free quiz to find out which balanced eating archetype you are and what your unique type needs to

maintain balance with the way you nourish yourself. That way, you can be free from food and diet obsession, maintain a

balanced weight, and cultivate a positive relationship with food and your body.

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