Fiber, in a nutshell, is basically the part of plant foods your body can't digest or absorb properly. Dietary fiber is generally broken down into two classifications. Soluble and insoluble.
Soluble fiber is able to dissolve in water, where it forms a gel-like substance in your digestive tract. Soluble fiber is helpful in slowing down the digestion of sugars, which is very useful to people with blood sugar issues as well as people trying to lose weight. Soluble fiber also has shown the ability to lower total blood cholesterol levels by helping to lower "bad" cholesterol in your blood. Foods with high levels of soluble fiber include berries, flax seeds, and apples.
Insoluble fiber is the fiber that most people associate with being "regular." Whereas soluble fiber ferments in your small intestine, insoluble fiber ferments much slower and is responsible for moving ingested foods along in your digestive system to help for easier bowel movements and overall regularity. The slowness in digestion of insoluble fiber is especially important in disease prevention, since it allows the entire colon to be cleansed, not just the upper part of the digestive tract. Foods high in insoluble fiber include vegetables, oat bran, and various nuts.
FIBER AND WEIGHT LOSS
Fiber aids in slower digestion of sugars, which as mentioned before, helps control blood sugar. Keeping blood sugar under control is a huge factor when trying to lose weight. A high fiber meal not only tends to be larger but often has fewer calories. Dietary fiber also helps you feel full both quicker and for longer periods of time than a meal that contains little to no fiber. Those of you who have tried to lose weight can attest that hunger can derail your progress quicker than anything. The proper amount of fiber in your diet can drastically reduce overall hunger, help you achieve better overall health, and help with weight management. Having a fiber source in every meal of the day can really help you get on the right track.
So how much fiber do you need? Women should shoot for 25 grams a day, with a mix of both soluble and insoluble fiber. Men should look to take in somewhere around 35-40 grams. While this may sound like a lot, if you're eating healthy, non-processed food (which I hope you are), this number is a lot easier to attain. If you are having issues getting to your desired number, a product such as Renew Life Organic Triple Fiber may be a good product to include in your regimen. I hope everyone is having an amazing day. If you haven't already, get some fiber in your meals today, and go work out!