Your Health & Fiber
By: Veronica Grengs, BS, BA
I hope this graph motivates you to analyze your diet and see how much fiber you are getting. The typical American diet severely lacks in fiber with the large amount of processed foods and small amount of whole foods we consume. Fiber plays a vital role in gut health as it serves as food for the bacteria in our gut. Many studies have and are continuing to show correlations with gut health and just about every disease from CVD to cancer and even mental illness.
There are two different types of fiber to be are of as they function differently in our bodies. Soluble fiber dissolves in water and is responsible for slowing down digestion. Food rich in soluble fiber include; oat bran, barley, nuts, seeds, legumes, fruits, and vegetables. The second type of fiber is insoluble fiber. Insoluble fiber absorbs water and speeds the passage of food through the stomach and intestine making it great for constipation. Great sources of insoluble fiber include; wheat bran, veggies and whole grains.
While shopping, it is important to read the food labels and ask yourself what is considered a good source of fiber? Grab the cereal or loaf of bread with at least 20% of DRI (daily recommended intake) which is about 5g of fiber.
Ready to start incorporating more fiber to your everyday diet? Great! Make sure however, you go slowly. A quick increase in fiber can lead to gas, bloating and stomach cramps.
Happy gut health!