If you are struggling with weight loss it is possible that this is due to the fact that you are not getting enough fiber in your diet. Opinions on how much fiber you should differ depending on who you ask etc.
However for the purpose of this article the National Cancer Institutes recommends that you get 20-35 grams of fiber in your diet and most Americans get somewhere between 10-15.
Benefits that fiber offers
Fiber has a lot of benefits to those seeking to lose weight and should be added to a diet slowly, the slow addition allows the body to adjust without the excess gas and bloatedness that can come from fiber.
It is also helpful to drink plenty of water because fiber draws water out of the intestines and if you are lacking water other health problems can result.
- Fiber has no calories and that is a plus for those that are counting calories on a weight loss plan! In addition to no calories water insoluble fiber (found in vegetables, whole grain products such as breads and cereals) add “bulk” to your diet. This bulk results in a more satisfying chewing experience.
- Water-soluble fiber (found in fruits, legumes, seeds, and oat products) allow you to feel fuller longer because they exit the stomach in a slower time period.
- Fibrous foods in general leave you feeling fuller sooner because they take longer to eat and you feel full sooner…translation you eat less!
Insoluble fiber can reduce your risk of colon Cancer and can relieve or prevent constipation, whereas soluble fiber can lower your risk of heart disease because the fiber absorbs fluid moving through your digestive tract.
The absorption of fluid causes the fiber to become almost gel like and it cleans the body by binding to cholesterol and other non-desirables in the body.
If you are having trouble with your weight loss consider looking into adding more fiber to your diet and keep in mind fiber from an apple is better than fiber from the apple juice. This has to do with processed foods vs. non-processed foods.
Where to find fiber?
- Never shop on an empty stomach, and that’s good advice regardless of shopping for fiber or not.
- Buy only what you need and buy fresh fruits and vegetables whenever possible.
- Buy produce twice a week and when you do so, choose smaller and younger looking products.
- Buy whole grain products and not the “enriched” refined products.
- Don’t refrigerate the produce, as nutrients can be lost through refrigeration.
- Read the labels when you are in the store.
Adding more fiber to your diet may help you shed the pounds and keep them off! Remember that you don’t have to deprive yourself to have a balanced life and diet.
Add some activities to your balancing act and success is only a matter of time!