Honestly. There is not enough space on this page to cover everything that you need to know about dietary fiber.
It is likely, by the end of it, you will have an incentive to go out there and carry out your own research, however!
What is Dietary Fiber?
Dietary fiber is a component of the food that you are eating. One of the unique things about fiber is that the body is unable to break it down. It can’t digest it at all. This means that it passes right through your system. Don’t worry. This is quite useful!
There are two types of dietary fiber:
- Soluble fiber: this dissolves in water. It is used to lower blood cholesterol and overall blood glucose levels.
- Insoluble fiber: this just passes right out your system. It increases the bulk of your stool and makes it a bit ‘softer’. This smooths the passage out of your body. This can help to relieve symptoms of constipation or various other issues related to passing stools.
The Benefits of Fiber In Your Diet
There are so many different benefits to dietary fiber it is tough to know where to begin. Here are some of the most important:
- Normalizes the movement in your bowls. As we mentioned before, this helps when you are passing stools. If you have a decent amount of dietary fiber in your system, then you may not suffer from constipation. This will not only make you feel a little less uncomfortable, but it can also help to reduce the chances of suffering from hemorrhoids. More about hemorrhoid prevention here.
- Dietary fiber can help to lower your cholesterol levels. This, obviously, will help to reduce your chances of heart disease and other conditions which have been tied to high cholesterol.
- There is some evidence that dietary fiber can help to reduce high blood pressure, although the jury is still out on that one. We have no doubt that a lot of research is being carried out. Don’t worry!
- The dietary fiber can help to reduce blood sugar levels. It does this by slowing down the rate at which the body absorbs this sugar. There is a chance that it may help to reduce the chances of somebody suffering from Type 2 diabetes. If you have type 2 diabetes, then dietary fiber may help to control the symptoms a bit easier.
- High fiber foods are incredibly filling. If you are trying to lose weight, then they are going to be perfect. This is because with a high fiber diet, you need to eat less in order to fill ‘full’. They also tend to have far fewer calories than many other foods.
How much fiber should you be consuming per day? Well, for a man you should be aiming for about 38 grams. For a woman, you should aim for 25 grams. You can easily get this amount into your diet through the consumption of fruits, beans, whole-grain foods, nuts and seeds.