Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Fabulous Fiber

Fiber Really Is Fabulous! Because humans can't digest fiber, it keeps you regular! Soluble fibers (found in oats, legumes and vegetables) have been shown to decrease cholesterol, protect against diabetes, colon cancer and gallstones. Insoluble fiber (in wheat, corn and vegetables) may delay glucose absoption, increase satiety, lower cholesterol, and protect against colon cancer. But no need to get picky-all fiber is good fiber, and most Americans are seriously lacking in the fiber department! The ADA recommends that adults have a dietary fiber intake of 20-35g per day, not exceeding 50g. Usually, this is about 14g/100calories consumed, so the average woman would aim for 28g, while your average male would be closer to 35g. It's much better to get your fiber from whole food sources, rather than mixing up a cup of Benefiber or Metamucil!

So let's bump up the fiber!
  • Increase whole grains, vegetables, fruit, and legumes in diet! Not only do they give you lots of fiber, but they're loaded with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
  • Make sure to increase your intake of fluids to at least 2 qts every day
Here are some great sources:
1/2 cup kidney beans 9g (1 cup is about the size of your fist, in cooked beans)
1/2 cup garbanzo beans 6g
1 medium sweet potato 5 g
1/2 cup of raspberries or blackberries 4g
1/4 cup of dates or prunes 4g
1 apple, banana or orange 4 g
1/2 cup cooked broccoli or parsnips 3g
8 brussel sprouts 4g
1 cup spinach 3.5g

Want to know the fiber content of a food I didn't list above? hop on over to or check out this stellar list!

Source: Mahan, L.K, and S Escott-Stump. Krause's Food and Nutrition Therapy. 12th edition


Live(and Eat) Abundantly said...

I love fiber!! Good post :)
I get so peeved by all the new like "fiber one" products and the like-- I love the original fiber one cereal, but like fiber one poptarts?? Its still a poptart-- and now I think they have splenda with fiber... come on!

One comment regarding the Kidney Bean amount... I had always been taught that the size of your fist (medium sized woman) was equal to one cup not half a cup...

Elizabeth Jarrard said...

Thank you for that correction Jamie!!! glad you have my back!

swankyrd said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog!
Great info on fiber!! One thing I found interesting a while back is that avocados have a lot of fiber. Yum!

preventionrd said...

Funny we posted such similar posts yesterday! Nutrition minds think alike! Thanks so much for stopping by my blog...I look forward to readind yours. Love the header, by the way! Good luck in completing the schooling for the best profession ever!! :)