Home Health Why do we have to consume more foods rich in fiber?

Why do we have to consume more foods rich in fiber?

The nutritionists insist a lot on the importance of taking more foods rich in fiber, especially fruits and vegetables, because they are essential to take care of health and to lose weight (or maintain it).

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Why do we have to consume more foods rich in fiber?
Why do we have to consume more foods rich in fiber?

I know that doctors are very insistent in recommending that the consumption of fiber-rich foods be increased in the diet. Basically it is for two reasons, because it translates into better health and because it also helps to lose weight and remove hunger.

HOW IT HELPS US

Eating foods rich in fiber is beneficial for several reasons:

  • It takes away our hunger for longer.
  • It keeps the blood sugar level more stable, avoiding peak blood glucose levels that can lead to hunger attacks.
  • It decreases the levels of fats in the blood, which protects cardiovascular health.
  • Regularizes intestinal transit avoiding constipation.
  • It counteracts the acidity of the intestine, protecting us from colon cancer.

WHAT IS DIETARY FIBER?

When we talk about fiber, we refer to a group of substances of vegetable origin that are regularly present in our diet, in fruits, vegetables, cereals, legumes and nuts. Products of animal origin lack fiber. In general, we could say that they are a non-digestible portion of certain products. And we distinguish two types of fiber, the soluble and the insoluble.

WHAT IS SOLUBLE FIBER

They are the pectins, gums and mucilages found in the pulp of fruits or the leaves of vegetables. This fiber stimulates salivation and delays gastric emptying. When hydrated with water forms gels and viscous substances that increase the fecal bolus and make it easier to evacuate.

On the other hand, it also ferments and can cause annoying gases, so you have to take it with restraint and gradually increase the amount if you are taking little.

WHAT FOODS ARE RICH IN SOLUBLE FIBER

Legumes (beans, lentils, chickpeas, etc.), potatoes, carrots, broccoli, oats, apples, bananas and nuts, among others.

WHAT IS INSOLUBLE FIBER

It is formed by the celluloses, lignins and hemicelluloses of food. Its function is to absorb water along the digestive tract and facilitate intestinal movements.

WHICH FOODS ARE RICH IN INSOLUBLE FIBER

Wheat bran, whole wheat bread, whole grains, the skin of some fruits and tomatoes, cauliflower and celery, among other foods.

HOW MUCH FIBER DO WE NEED?

We need to consume about 30 g of fiber per day between both types, with a ratio of 3 to 1 between insoluble and soluble, that is, three times more insoluble fiber than soluble fiber.

WHERE DO WE GET IT FROM

Most foods of plant origin contain a mixture of both types, although the insoluble is usually more abundant. The foods richest in total fiber -without distinguishing one type from another- are whole grains, legumes and nuts.

AN EASY WAY TO KNOW WHICH FOODS HAVE MORE FIBER

To give you an idea, on average, fruits have 1.5 g of fiber per 100 g of product; the vegetables, between 2 and 3 g of fiber per 100 g of product; and dried pulses, about 4 g of fiber per 100 g of product.

But if you want to know how to include more fiber-rich foods in your diet without having to use the calculator, do not miss Why is it good to eat fiber? What is it for?

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