Wednesday, October 10, 2007

10 Tips to Get your Daily Fiber

There are many great benefits of getting fiber in your daily diet. Most individuals need at least 30-35 grams of fiber in their diet a day. This is often a daunting task; but a few items on this top 10 list can help you get there faster. Eating this much fiber will keep you feeling fuller longer, increase your energy level, keep you regular and reduce your cholesterol levels and will even help you shed a few pounds.

1. Scan for Bran: Look for "bran," "whole grain," and "whole wheat" on product packages and ingredient labels. These ingredients can help boost fiber intake.

2. Grab the Whole Food: Munch on a whole piece of fruit, in place of drinking a glass of juice. You'll get the nutrients and the fiber too.

3. Savor the Skins: Eat fruit and vegetables with the skin on. Eating the skin helps to bump up the fiber, plus it provides texture and a bonus of other nutrients.

4. Screen for Beans: Replace your typical side dishes with high-fiber dried peas and beans, such as kidney, pinto, lentils or black-eyed peas. These fiver legumes make it easier to meet daily fiver goals.

5. Go Nuts: Jazz up salads, vegetables, snacks and deserts with almonds, sunflower seeds or soy nuts. Nuts and seeds add fiber and fun-to-chew crunch to foods.

6. Be Berry Wild: Choose raspberries, blackberries and boysenberries to add variety to you cereals. These berries have twice the fiber of many other fruit selections.

7. Bring on the Brown: Use brown rice instead of white. Switch to whole-wheat pasta, whole-wheat flout, whole-wheat breads and whole-grain rackers instead of regular white versions.

8. Skip the Chips: Select snacks that are a good source of fiber. Instead of potato chips, go for low-fat popcorn, whole-grain pretzels or oven-crisped whole-wheat pita triangles.

9: Drink up: Water is a healthy beverage choice-especially as you up the fiber. Your body needs more water to help process the added fiber you eat.

10: Reach for the Bar: Fiber bars and flax seed added to your snacks or smoothies will get you to your daily goal. My favorite fiber bar contains 14 grams of fiber through raw sources like dates, nuts and other fruits.

Getting the fiber is key but slowly work up to the 30-35 grams needed to maintain proper health. Your body needs to adjust and adapt the the high level of fiber and always keep your body refreshed with liquids.
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