Health benefits of adding fiber to your diet

Add more fiber to your diet; you have probably heard this before from your healthcare provider, but do you know why it is important to add fiber to your diet and its health benefits? Dietary fiber is found in many fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, and it is considered to be the best for preventing constipation. However, fiber-rich meals can also help you maintain a healthy weight and reduce your risk of developing diabetes, heart disease, and some types of cancer.  

It’s simple to choose foods that are high in fiber. Let’s see what are the types of dietary fiber and benefits of high fiber-diet:  

What is dietary fiber?  

 Roughage or bulk, another name for dietary fiber, refers to the components of plant foods that your body cannot digest or absorb. Fiber isn’t processed by your body like other meal ingredients like lipids, proteins, or carbohydrates that it breaks down and absorbs. Instead, it passes relatively intact through your stomach, small intestine, and colon.  

Types of fiber  

 There are two types of fiber that are commonly found:  

Soluble fiber: This type of fiber simply gets into a gel-like form when it comes in contact with water. It dissolves in water and helps in maintaining cholesterol and glucose levels. It can be found in oats, beans, apples, carrots, and peas.  

Insoluble fiber: Those who experience constipation or irregular stools may find this sort of fiber helpful since it helps the passage of material through your digestive tract and increases stool mass. Insoluble fiber can be found in abundance in whole-wheat products including flour, wheat bran, nuts, beans, and vegetables like potatoes, cauliflower, and green beans  

Benefits of high fiber-diet   

Lower cholesterol levels: Low-density lipoprotein, or “bad,” cholesterol levels may be decreased by soluble fiber contained in beans, oats, flaxseed, and oat bran, which may help lower total blood cholesterol levels. High-fiber foods may also help your heart by lowering blood pressure and inflammation. 

Stabilize bowel movements: Dietary fiber softens and increases the weight and volume of your feces. Fiber absorbs water and gives stools volume, so if you have loose, watery stools, it might help to solidify them.  

Helps in maintaining bowel movement: A high-fiber diet can reduce the risk of developing tiny pouches in the colon and hemorrhoids. It is observed that a high-fiber diet is likely to reduce the occurrence of colorectal cancer. In the colon, some fiber is fermented.   

Help control blood sugar levels: Fiber, especially soluble fiber, can help control blood sugar levels in diabetics by slowing the absorption of sugar. A nutritious diet including insoluble fiber may help lower the risk of type 2 diabetes.  

Helps in achieving a healthy weight: You will probably eat less and feel fuller longer if you consume high-fiber foods instead of low-fiber ones because they are usually more satisfying. Additionally, high-fiber foods take longer to consume and are less “energy dense,” which means they contain fewer calories per unit of food.  

A high-fiber diet is good for health, but it only works best when you start drinking plenty of water so that it can make your stool soft and bulky. You should consult your healthcare provider before adding any supplement to your diet.   

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