Ah fiber, we hear so much chatter about it on a daily basis, yet many of us fail to get enough in our diets. One of the FIRST things I tell my nutrition clients in their quest to be healthier is to eat more fiber. Especially since the main source is PLANTS! We all need to add more plants to our diets.
Unfortunately, a lot of us have not been informed about what fiber does, or why you should be getting more. Is this you? NO worries! I am going to change that today!
A Few Benefits of Adding More Fiber To Your Diet
- Helps Control Cholesterol Levels – fiber comes in two types, soluble and insoluble fiber. Soluble fiber is able to bind to bile acids, which are then excreted. When bile acid levels are lowered, cholesterol is used up to replace the diminished supply of this essential digestive substance. This is a wonderful benefit for those who struggle with high bad cholesterol levels. Many are able to come off the not-so-good-for-you cholesterol meds when they make dietary changes and add good gut health supplements to their daily regimen.
- Helps Control Blood Sugar Levels – a diet high in fiber slows down the rate at which sugar enters the blood stream. The result is a more sustained entry of glucose into the body, along with accompanying insulin regulation. Getting more fiber is extremely important for my friends with diabetes or who have had any type of weight loss surgery.
- Helps Maintain Regularity – if you experience occasional constipation, (hello bariatric friends) you are most likely deficient in fiber intake as well as unbalanced in the gut. Fiber is able to retain water, making stool easier to pass. Fiber helps to move the waste and ick and bacteria killed off by things like Pro Bio 5 OUT of the digestive tract. It is such a crucial piece of the gut health puzzle. For those who take any type of iron supplement- fiber and magnesium like that in Bio Cleanse are VERY helpful in keeping the body regular.
- May Help With Weight Loss – fiber helps with weight loss thanks to one simple fact; it keeps you fuller for a longer time! As long as glucose is slowly trickling into your blood, along with fiber absorbing fluids and bulking up, you are likely to eat less.
Ready to add some ridiculously simple fiber sources to your diet?
Here are some of the best sources of low carb fiber you can add today to get your body functioning better.
There are almost no carbs in flaxseeds because they contain so much fiber, and both soluble and insoluble varieties, with 1/3 being soluble.
Flax may just be the best low carb fiber sources, with 1 tablespoon yielding only 2 grams of carbs and 1.9 of which is fiber.
You can use whole or ground, whichever you prefer. I love adding them to salads, soups, shakes, and also to things like stir fry and other veggie dishes. When Ben makes his meatloaf, either beef, pork, or turkey, we always add a few spoonful’s of ground flax seed.
A highly nutrient dense fruit, the avocado’s health benefits are plentiful. While it has 9 grams of carbs, 7 of those are fiber, which nets only 2 impact carbs and ideal for a low carb lifestyle.
Additionally, the avocado contains 2 grams of protein and 15 grams of healthy fats, both of which are essential for a healthy low carb body.
Key Nutrients In Just A 3.5 Ounce Serving Include:
- 26% RDA of vitamin K
- 20% RDA of folate
- 17% RDA of vitamin C
- 14% RDA of potassium
- 14% RDA of vitamin B5
- 13% RDA of vitamin B6
- 10% RDA of vitamin E
Avocados also have more potassium than bananas, a nutrient that helps to assist with many vital internal body processes. A 3.5-ounce serving contains 14% of the RDA of potassium. This is a great swap for that banana after a workout for those trying to watch the carbs!
Several studies found that potassium intake helps to reduce blood pressure and lower risks for heart attack and strokes.
If that’s not enough, avocado also contains manganese, copper, magnesium, zinc, iron, vitamins B2 and B3, phosphorous and vitamin A.
Broccoli is amazing not just for its fiber level but also for its ridiculously low caloric density.
½ a cup of broccoli has only 31 calories, 2 grams of fiber, and 4 grams of carbs, bulking up stomach contents without a large carb or caloric load.
It also supplies a lot of vitamin A, vitamin C, and vitamin B-6.
Spinach and Chard
1 cup of chopped spinach has 1 carb and 1 gram fiber, so now carbs at all, and the same goes for chard! YUM!
½ a cup of cut cooked asparagus has 4 grams of carbs and 2 grams fiber.
1 cup of chopped celery has 3 grams of carbs and 2 grams of fiber.
1 cup of sliced mushrooms has 2 gram of carbs and 1 gram of fiber.
As you can clearly see, there are a LOT of low carb, nutrient-dense choices for adding fiber to your daily routine! Experiment and try new things and you just might be amazed at what you actually enjoy!