- Fiber is the part in plant foods that humans can’t digest. Even though fiber isn’t absorbed, it does all sorts of great stuff for our bodies.
- Fiber slows down the absorption of other nutrients eaten at the same meal, including carbohydrates.
- This slowing down may help prevent peaks and valleys in your blood sugar levels, reducing your risk for type 2 diabetes.
- Certain types of fiber found in oats, beans, and some fruits can also help lower blood cholesterol.
- As an added plus, fiber helps people feel full.
- In general, the more refined, or “whiter,” the grain-based food, the lower the fiber.Adults need at least 20 to 30 grams of fiber per day for good health. But most Americans get only about 15 grams a day.
Some tips for increasing fiber intake:
· Eat whole fruits instead of drinking fruit juices.
· Brown rice and whole grain products instead of white rice, bread, and pasta.
· Choose whole grain cereals for breakfast instead of sugary white ones.
· Snack on raw vegetables instead of chips, crackers, or chocolate bars.
· Substitute legumes for meat two to three times per week in chili and soups.