Though fiber is technically not an essential nutrient, it should be consumed regularly as though it is. Adding fiber to your diet on a daily basis can have a huge positive impact on your overall health. Sometimes people stray away from high fiber foods because they are also high in carbohydrates. Well...I’m here to give you some good news. Complex carbohydrates and fibrous foods are your friends!
Insoluble vs. Soluble Fiber
There are two types of fiber, soluble and insoluble. Soluble fiber absorbs liquid and acts similar to a sponge. Insoluble fiber, on the other hand, is the structural portion of food and does not break down with water. A good portion of fiber that we consume is insoluble, though both types are beneficial to our health.
The Numerous Health Benefits
According to Medical News Today, “ Most people in the United States do not get enough fiber from their diets. According to some estimates, only 5% of the population meet the adequate intake recommendations. This means that most people in the U.S. could get health benefits from increasing their daily fiber intake.” I go over a handful of the health benefits in my newest YouTube video (below) but the list goes on! Below is a more comprehensive list according to Medical News Today and WebMD.
Protects against heart disease
Aids in gut health
Reduces risk of diabetes
Helps with weight management
Lowers cholesterol levels
Assists in regulating blood sugar levels
Helps you go #2 by preventing constipation
A Fiber Rich Diet
If you are following a plant-based lifestyle, chances are high that you are already consuming adequate amounts of fiber. Fiber is not found in meat or dairy, only plants. Yet another benefit of choosing to fuel your body with a predominantly plant diet. If you are worried that you are not intaking enough fiber, I encourage you to spend extra time shopping in the produce and/or bean aisle at your grocery store. Below is a chart provided by Medical News Today that breaks down the amounts of fiber in some common foods.
If you are looking to incorporate more fiber packed home cooked meals into your life, check out the MM Community, which is my plant-based subscription cookbook series.
If you ever have a question or would like meal recommendations, feel free to reach out to me via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.