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Fiber: Why You Need It & How to Get More of It

It’s okay to admit that fiber isn’t the most dazzling substance in the world. The fact that it’s associated with “staying regular” only adds to the not-so-romantic image of it.

Fiber.

Two syllables that some mistakenly associate with grandma and her prune juice. Some may wrinkle their nose at the idea that they actually need a good amount of fiber in their diet.

The truth is you need a fiber-rich diet today, and not forty years from now. Keep reading for some advice for how to get more fiber… without resorting to prune juice.

Why You Need A Fiber-Rich Diet

The first thing you should know about fiber is what it is — a substance that is produced by plants that the human body CANNOT digest.

You’re probably wondering why it would be logical to eat something that your body can’t actually digest. Fiber, through its nature, allows your blood to absorb sugar more slowly. This prevents sudden blood sugar spikes.

A big reason for eating more fiber is that it is a powerful weapon against certain diseases, such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). If you suffer from things like constant constipation or diarrhea then fiber-rich foods can ease symptoms. Fiber can also prevent digestive issues before they even start!

Another reason to love fiber? It’s GREAT for weight loss and weight control. Fiber-rich foods can help you feel fuller faster, which means that you eat fewer calories.

It’s important to note that the recommended amount is 25 grams for women and 38 grams for men. Unfortunately, most adults barely get 15 grams of fiber each day!

Now that you know why fiber is an essential part of a healthy diet, it’s important to answer the question of just which fiber-rich foods you should be eating.

Fiber-Rich Foods to Add to Your Diet

I mentioned prune juice, but the fact is that prunes themselves are pretty much the best source of fiber around.

A cup of pitted prunes is equal to about 13 grams of fiber. That represents anywhere from a third to half a person’s daily fiber needs!

Apples are another very popular source of fiber. A medium-sized apple contains 4 grams.

If you’re not keen on eating fruits and veggies alone to get your fiber fix, consider including them in a meal. For instance a cup of hot oatmeal (another great source of fiber) would be great topped with chopped apples and a sprinkle of cinnamon.

Mmm.

A delicious start to the day and a good portion of your daily fiber needs met in one meal? Sounds like a plan.

If eating high-fiber foods individually sounds a bit boring, look around for recipes. That way you can be sure to eat the right kind of meals throughout the day that will meet your fiber needs.

Are you convinced that fiber is more than just your grandma’s prune juice stash? I hope so, since fiber is important for every diet; you cannot afford to wait until you are a “certain age” to care about your intake.

Getting the daily amount of fiber is important for ongoing optimal health and can help you overcome issues such as high blood sugar and obesity.

Fiber is for everyone at any age… that means you!

Image: Rachel Hathaway

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