Health One Family Medicine

Vitamin F – the Importance of Fiber in Your Diet

Do you eat 20 grams of fiber every day?

Probably not, right? The FDA requires you to eat 20-30 grams of fiber daily. Yet, most people don’t even eat half the recommended portion. This might be because most of the fibrous parts of the plant are thrown away. More importantly, processed food items don’t have any fiber in them.

So unfortunately, most Americans live a fiber-free life. If you are among this group of people then you are in trouble. This is because you are missing out on a very healthy item in your diet.

Fiber is something that has been proven to make your gut healthy and happy. Due to fiber, you can chomp down your food without worrying about it getting clogged up in your gastrointestinal tract. Sounds good, right?

What is fiber?

The fiber we are interested in is called dietary fiber. It is the roughage, bulky part of the plant that you often throw out. This is because it is indigestible. However, this indigestible food can actually do wonders for the digestion tract by improving the bowel movement of the rest of the food you eat.

Here is a list of delicious fiber that you might like:

  • Whole grain food (bran, oats, and quinoa)
  • Vegetables
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Beans and legumes

In short, all the browns and greens you tend to avoid on the dinner plate. Additionally, fruits like berries, apples, and citruses make up for the colorful fibrous component you can add to your diet plan.

Why is fiber important?

You are what you eat. Hence, if you eat well but the metabolism doesn’t help you digest it then you face many problems. Here is where the fiber comes in to save the day. It’s rough, bulky edges help clear the way for other delicious and scrumptious food particles to pass through.

Other benefits of fiber include:

Reduces chances of diabetes

Fiber inhibits the breakdown of carbohydrates in the body. This means that your body gets less amount of sugar to absorb. As a result, you have regulated blood sugar levels that can keep diabetes in check. Moreover, doctors say that this regulation prevents the risk of type-2 diabetes in healthy people.

Decreases chances of a heart attack

High blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes and clogged vessels are all major contributors to a massive heart attack. Not only that, they also enhance your chances of having chronic heart diseases. However, fiber prevents this by controlling cholesterol levels, maintaining blood sugar and improving digestion.

Bid adieu to constipation

Horrid eating habits lead to constipation. This is not good for your body as it needs to extract the solid waste before it contaminates your system. Since fiber normalizes your bowel movements and makes them smoother you are less likely to suffer the curse of constipation.

This is why we call fiber the infamous vitamin F. The savior of all our gut problems!