Hello there beautiful people, I hope you’re all doing well 🥰
If you’ve been here for a while, you know I often talk about the importance of consuming high fiber foods. Today, I thought I’d share more about why that is and easy swaps we can make to maintain a more fibre rich diet.
First things first: What is Fibre?
Dietary fibre is the undigested parts of plant-based foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans and legumes.
Dietary fibre can fall under one of two categories: soluble and insoluble fibre.
Soluble Fibre, which is found is foods like fruits and oats, dissolves in water and forms a sticky gel in our gut. This helps keep stool soft and therefore easy to pass. Insoluble fibre is also very important for our gut health – the beneficial bacteria in our gut digests this fibre which keeps our microbiome (gut bacteria) healthy which is incredibly important for our overall health. In fact, 70% of our immune system lives in our gut, so keeping its inhabitants healthy and happy is of significant importance for overall health.
Insoluble Fibre, on the other hand, comes from foods such as nuts and whole grains. Insoluble fibre, as the name suggests, does not dissolve and remains undigested in the gut. It is very important because it adds bulk to stool making it heavier and easier to pass.
Why is Fibre so important?
Fibre is very important for gut health; however that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
Consuming a high fibre diet, according to the NHS, is associated with decreased risk of heart disease (the worlds’ biggest killer), stroke, type 2 diabetes and colon cancer.
Also, keep in mind that high fibre foods, such as fruit, veg, whole grains, nuts and legumes also contain a vast array of important nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, flavonoids and polyphenols which significantly contribute to good health.
How to add more Fibre to your diet
As explained above, fibre can fall under one of two categories – soluble and insoluble. Many plant foods contain a mix of both in varying quantities. Therefore, it is not vital to remember which foods contain which type of fibre. What is important is to add many different plant foods to your overall diet.
Fibre rich foods and Easy Swaps
Use whole wheat pasta vs. white pasta. *I especially like the Good Earth whole wheat pasta as it’s 100% whole wheat so it’s jam packed with fibre and tastes really nice.
Use brown rice vs. white rice
Opt for whole grain, whole wheat, seeded bread vs. white bread
Leave the skin on your fruit and veg when you can- no need to waste time peeling potatoes, just give them a good scrub and enjoy skin and all!
Consume fibre (and protein) rich foods such as beans, lentils, nuts and seeds
Make sure you get your 5-a-day. Experts and now stating that we need closer to 10 portions of fruit and veg daily, not just 5, so make sure you consume a sufficient amount of fruit and vegetables.
Final Note: when purchasing ready made foods / snacks, please note that for a product to state that it is a ‘source of fibre’, the product must contain at least 3g of fibre per 100g or at least 1.5g of fibre per 100kcal. Whereas, for a product to state that it is ‘high in fibre’, the product must contain at least 6g of fibre per 100g or 3g of fibre per 100kcal.
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Until my next post, be well xXx