What is Fiber?
Dietary fiber is part of plant foods that the body can’t digest or absorb. It’s found naturally in plant-based foods including whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and beans and legumes. Fiber isn’t broken down—it passes through your body relatively intact. There are two types of fiber, each with its own benefits:
Soluble (dissolves in water):
-Lowers blood sugar
-Sources include: Oatmeal, Peas, Beans, Apples, Oranges, Carrots, Barley
Insoluble (doesn’t dissolve in water):
-Promotes movement of food through the digestive system
-Increases stool bulk
-Sources include: Whole-wheat flour, Wheat bran, Vegetables, Nuts, Beans
Why do we need fiber?
Diets rich in fiber are associated with many health benefits. Fiber helps you stay at a healthy weight by keeping you feeling fuller longer, lowers cholesterol levels, helps control blood sugar levels by slowing down the digestion of food, and aids in digestion by keeping waste moving through your intestines.
How much Fiber Do I Need?
Fiber is an important pat of a balanced diet, yet 95% of Americans do not meet dietary fiber intake recommendations. The average target is about 25-35 grams of fiber per day, but varies depending on your age.
For more information on fiber, fill up on our fiber handouts!