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Fiber: All Your Questions Answered

by Carly Neubert, BA, NC on September 21, 2022

When you read the word, “fiber,” did you think of those fiber bars smothered in chocolate? So did I. Fiber helps regulate our body’s sugar use. These fiber bars may be tempting, but there is certainly a better and healthier way to get your daily dose of fiber.

What is fiber?

Have you noticed that healthcare experts recommend that your plate of food be filled with every color of the rainbow? There’s a reason for that endorsement of fruits and vegetables. These types of foods are high in fiber. Fiber is not absorbed by your body and isn’t broken down by the digestive system. Since it remains undigested, it then moves to your colon, where it feeds essential friendly gut bacteria. Without fiber, the bacteria in your gut will not be balanced and healthy. Fiber also adds bulk to your digestive tract and stimulates the intestines. This is the main reason why fiber is necessary for a proper diet. Fiber’s benefits are not limited to your digestive system, however. Fiber can also help to reduce the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and constipation. 

Fiber is very valuable, so it is important to maintain adequate and consistent levels of fiber in your diet. The recommended daily intake of fiber (for adults) is 20-30 grams a day, yet most American adults only get 15 grams a day. Some health experts are more specific, recommending that men eat 38 grams of fiber per day, and women eat 25 grams

What are the types of fibers?

Since we have gone over what fiber is in general, let’s go through the different types of fibers. First, there is soluble fiber. The fact that this type of fiber is soluble means that it can be dissolved in water. On the other hand, insoluble fiber does not dissolve when in contact with water. Insoluble fiber mostly functions through bulking. The benefits include speeding up the passage of food and waste through the gut.

Fiber FAQ’s

Which food is rich in fiber?

There are many foods that are rich in fiber. One of the tastiest (and has the highest fiber content) is a pear. There are 5.5 grams of fiber in a medium-sized pear. Strawberries are another healthy fiber option. Not only do they have fiber, but they also have vitamin C and antioxidants. There are 3 grams of fiber in a cup of fresh strawberries. Avocado is another great option (and super yummy too). Loaded with healthy fats and B vitamins, avocados have 10 grams of fiber in one cup. Some other colorful fruits and veggies that are full of fiber are carrots (3.6 grams per cup of raw carrots), beets (3.8 per cup), broccoli (2.4 grams per cup), and brussels sprouts (3.3 grams per cup). 

What does fiber do to your body?

As I mentioned above, fiber has many benefits that can affect change in your whole boy. From constipation relief to slowing down sugar absorption, fiber boasts some important benefits for all. 

Is fiber good for weight loss?

This is one of the most highly-Googled questions regarding fiber. Like I have mentioned in previous blogs, there is no magic pill or solution for losing weight. There need to be lifestyle changes as well as dietary alterations. If you’re looking to incorporate fiber into your weight loss journey, soluble fiber is the way to go. Soluble fiber is a natural appetite suppressant, so it can help you reduce your calorie intake. Soluble fiber can be found in oranges, apricots, legumes, and grains. 

How can I increase fiber in my diet?

You can increase fiber in your diet by eating some of the aforementioned foods, or you can incorporate a fiber supplement into your everyday routine. Fiber supplements come in all shapes and sizes. From powders to capsules, there is an option for you. Some of the best-selling fiber products on HealthyHabitsLiving.com are:

    Are eggs high in fiber?

    Eggs are actually low in fiber. A hardboiled egg has 0 grams of fiber. If you love your scrambled egg breakfasts, try pairing it with a source of fiber like sliced avocado. 

    What snacks are high in fiber?

    Snacking could definitely be considered an American pastime. Snacks can definitely be unhealthy and sugary, but there are some that are high in fiber! If you’re feeling a bit hangry and need some quick snack options, try these out:

    • Almonds
    • Popcorn
    • Sliced avocado
    • Granola
    • Trail mix
    • Peanut butter
    • Don’t forget water!

    Can you eat too much fiber?

    Yes, absolutely! This usually occurs when someone consumes more than 70 grams of fiber a day. The symptoms of consuming too much fiber include bloating, gas, and constipation. By increasing your fluid intake, you can avoid these painful symptoms. This is actually quite rare, however. If you think about it, only 5% of Americans even meet their daily recommended level of fiber intake. 

    Do you need to drink water with fiber?

    Yes! This is key to avoiding constipation and nausea. 

    Does fiber make you gain weight?

    Fiber is not usually associated with a significant weight gain. Weight fluctuates hour by hour, day by day, depending on your physical activity and water consumption. If you are experiencing significant weight gain after taking fiber supplements, this may signify a larger issue that needs to be addressed by a healthcare professional. 

    Does fiber make you fart?

    Adding in a large amount of fiber into your diet rapidly can cause gas in some cases. This is due to the bacteria in your intestines processing foods that are not being digested by your gastrointestinal system as they pass through the colon. How can you treat this? Drink more water and add fiber-rich food gradually into your diet.

    Concluding Thoughts

    Fiber is so important to your digestion and overall health. If you’ve learned anything from this blog, I hope it is that adding fiber can be as easy as making your snacks a little healthier and looking into a fiber supplement. Questions about how to incorporate fiber into your lifestyle? Schedule a consult with me, Carly Neubert BA, NC.