Increasing Your Daily Fiber Without Discomfort
Increasing Your Daily Fiber Without Discomfort
We all know about the need to increase fiber in our daily diet, or we should with all the media buzz lately telling us how to eat healthier. The problem with adding fiber to our diet is that nutritional fiber supplements taste awful, and selecting foods with fiber typically is unappealing to most shoppers. It is also common for individuals who start adding fiber to experience abdominal upset and so they quit before realizing any benefits from the added fiber to their diet. So, what is the answer to adding fiber in a comfortable manner to our diet?
The most important way to increase your fiber without the uncomfortable affects it can wreck on your abdomen is to increase the fiber in your diet slowly, an emphasis on slowly. When you increase your fiber slowly you minimize the occurrence of gas and bloating. To do this you have to recognize what your fiber sources are.
To minimize the discomfort to your system, choose a wide variety of fiber sources such as a mix of soluble fiber and insoluble fiber. Beans, fruits, oats and peas are examples of soluble fiber and vegetables and whole grains are examples of insoluble fiber.
You should choose whole grain foods over the processed refined carbohydrates such as white bread. Foods that are whole grain retain the kernel's fiber-rich outer shell, which is known as the bran. It is important to eat whole grains because they supply vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that your body needs to be healthy. You can identify foods that are whole grain by looking for whole wheat, hard red winter wheat, barley, triticale, oats, barley, rye, brown rice, buckwheat, millet, oatmeal, and also bulgur.
Your body will love you if you begin each day with a fiber boost. Starting your day with the right kind of fuel for your body (food) is important. To do this, choose breakfast cereals with at least 3 grams of fiber per serving, or chose whole-wheat toast or a handful of fiber-rich berries. Remember to not overdo the fiber, it is better to spread the fiber choices out over your entire day, but starting with at least one serving of fiber first thing in the morning will get your day off to a very good start.
When it is time for a mid afternoon snack reach for something healthy for your body such as whole grain crackers, granola bars, homemade trail mix made with low-fat granola, a handful of mixed nuts, or dried figs and or apricots. Popcorn is another high-fiber snack and it is popular with the kids.
In order to get enough fiber throughout the day, add fresh fruit to every meal. You can add fruit to your cereal or yogurt at breakfast, eat a apple or pear at morning snack-time, slice apples or add blueberries to your salad at lunch, and make a cool refreshing fruit cup for dessert after dinner. It is easy to add fruit to snacks and meals if you think about it. Just remember to keep the skin on fruits to retain all that fiber goodness. Keep plenty of fresh fruits on hand so that family members will be able to grab them easily when they get hungry.
Include one serving each day of legumes, which are high in fiber. Legumes include beans, beans, and lentils. You can put legumes in casseroles, puree them to make a dip, use them in salads and soups at lunchtime.
American cuisine tends to have less fiber content than other ethnic cuisines, so every once in a while have a cultural dining experience in a restaurant or at home by bringing a taste of Mexican, Middle Eastern, or Mediterranean fare to your table.
While baking at home substitute whole grain flour in your recipes for cookies, bread or rolls to increase your fiber content. You can load baked goods with bananas, berries and raisins to make them tasty and healthy at the same time.
Another important tip when increasing fiber in your diet is to increase your water intake too. Fiber absorbs water in your system and if you forget to increase your water intake while increasing your fiber, the result will be constipation. No one likes to be constipated.
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