What is Fiber?
Dietary fiber (also called roughage) is the indigestible portion of food derived from plants. That means they are not absorbed by the blood stream. Fiber is listed under “total carbohydrates” on nutrition facts label. Fiber provides 0 calories. It passes through our digestive tract without providing nutrition or calories, and yet it is very healthy for us. Learn how to lose weight with high fiber diet.
Photo credit richard.scharfenberg
4 Ways How fiber helps you lose weight
The secret to weight loss is eating more fiber. People who increase fiber in their diet will lose weight more easily and quickly. Be sure to drink plenty of water with fiber to avoid any stomach issues
- Fiber makes us feel full sooner and stays in our stomach longer than other substances we eat.
- Fiber moves fat through our digestive system faster so that less of it is absorbed.
- Eating foods with plenty of fiber will help to stabilize our blood sugar. Lower blood sugar means less insulin and less body fat deposition.
- Fiber keeps you full longer and thus helps you lose weight.
Good sources of fiber
- Legumes (lentils, dry beans and peas)
- Brown rice
- Whole grains (wheat, oats, barley)
Poor sources of fiber
- dairy products
- White bread
- refined grains
- sugary breakfast cereals
- regular pasta
- regular pizza crusts
Tyes of Fiber.
There are two basic kinds of fiber: Soluble and Insoluble – You need both.
1. Soluble Fiber
is water soluble. It slows down the movement of food through our intestines.
Benefits of Soluble Fiber
– lower total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol (the Bad cholesterol) therefore reducing the risk of heart disease
– regulate blood sugar for people with diabetes
2. Insoluble Fiber
is not water soluble. This type of fiber absorbs water as it moves through our digestive system, easing constipation.
Benefits of Insoluble Fiber
– Keeps constipation at bay
– remove toxic waste through colon in less time
How much fiber to eat?
I am not a big fan of measuring how many grams of fiber we must consume on a daily basis. But you can ensure you are getting enough fiber by eating plenty salads, fruits, vegetables and well cooked beans and lentils.
The best way to include fiber in your diet is eating a big salad BEFORE your main course. My favourite veggies which go in my salad are salad greens, celery, tomatoes, cucumbers, radish, carrots, avocados, olives etc. If you want to make it complete meal add some eggs, chicken, tofu, chickpeas or beans to your salad.
Adding salads to your daily diet will automatically boost your fiber intake. I always add some low fat salad dressing to my salads for taste and flavor. Get creative with your salads and start to enjoy them.
Lack of fiber can make you fat. A typical American diet of pasta, pizza, burgers, French fries, cakes, cookies, cheese, meat etc is very low in fiber.
Increase your fiber intake by overhauling your diet and consume plenty of fruits, vegetables, beans with every single meal for faster weight loss.