Dietary fiber is a plant-based nutrient that is also called a roughage or bulk. It cannot be broken down into digestible sugar molecules. So when you consume high fiber food, it passes through the intestinal tract intact, but on its way, fiber does lot of important work for the digestive tract. Fiber is one of the most important part of a balanced diet, fibre helps to prevent many health problems like obesity, diabetes, cancers and also very useful in maintaining the proper functioning of the digestive tract.
Fiber is classified into two categories that include:-
- Soluble – soluble fiber melts into the liquids and turns into a gel-like substance.It slows down the passage of food through the gut so the body can absorb nutrients effectively. Foods like oats, cucumbers, and blueberries, beans, lentils, peas, citrus fruits, apples and barley are excellent sources of soluble fiber.
- Insoluble – Insoluble fiber does not melt into the liquids in our body and mostly retains its shape and bulks up food as it passes through our bodies and speeds up the passage of food through the digestive system. It is very beneficial for people who have slow digestion or struggle with constipation. Insoluble fiber is found in foods such as leafy green vegetables, whole grains, wheat bran, brown rice, green beans, tomatoes, cauliflower, cucumbers and potatoes, are very rich sources of insoluble fiber.
Benefits of eating high fiber rich foods
- Helps lose weight –According to the research if you’re looking to lose weight and improve your health, eating more fibre may help you get there. There are millions of bacteria known as the gut flora. That thrives in our gut, especially in the large intestine. These bacteria need to eat well to stay healthy, fiber (mostly soluble) is the food for these bacteria, that helps in digestion of fibre and convert it into energy, herby promoting the smooth functioning of the digestive system, when the digestive system is healthy it automatically regulates metabolism that is helpful in burning the fat.
- Promotes immune system – People who consume high fiber foods regularly build their immune system in the most natural way that stays for life. There are specific fermentable fibers that have been considered to contribute a very healthy immune function. High fiber foods promote good bacteria in the digestive system, which in turn helps in building a strong immune system.
- Improves cholesterol levels – Eating high-fiber food has shown to control serum lipids, total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C), high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C), and triglycerides. Studies have also found that people eating high fiber diet has also reduced rates of coronary heart disease.
- Smooth bowel movements – The best health benefit one can get by eating high fiber diet is having regular and smooth bowel movements which are necessary for elimination waste products in the form of stools.
- Protects against cancer – Studies have found that certain foods that contain high fiber can protect against colon cancer.
Sources of high fiber food
- Flax seeds- Flax is a rich source of fibre and powerful seeds that contain omega-3 fats, which help reduce fat.
- Avocados- Avocados are the rich source of fibre and fat this fruit is rich in potassium, monounsaturated fats and vitamin K, a nutrient that is good for overall health, is sure to keep you satiated until supper.
- Wheat Bran- Wheat bran is the outer hull of wheat grains, a highly nutritious food that is the richest source with bloat-banishing fibre, low in calories, and high in muscle-building protein.
- Oatmeal- Oatmeal is a rich source of fibre, highly beneficial for losing weight, Include this in your daily diet by adding to any preparations or you can simply make a porridge out of this super fibrous food