Nutrition

The Top fiber rich foods for good health

The importance of fiber rich foods for good health 

What is fiber?

Dietary fiber is parts of plant food that body can not digest. Indigestible carbohydrates , lignin, a resistant starch  portion of food from plants. Fibers provide less energy than other nutrients. Because it can not absorb completely in the body.

Our body can not digest or absorb fibers in the small intestine. Fiber also is known as roughage or bulk. We get fiber only from plant foods. Meat, fishes, and dairy products are deficient in fiber. It passes intact from our body. Fiber-rich food is the important part of balanced diet. Most of the people do not  eat fiber rich food in the proper amount. At least  everyone adds 30 gm of fiber in their daily diet.

fiber rich food


Mechanism of action

Dietary fiber acts through three mechanism-  bulking, viscosity, fermentation.
Bulking fibers
They absorb water and increase the bulk of stool.
Soluble  (psyllium)and insoluble fiber ( cellulose and hemicelluloses)
Viscous fibers
Thicken the food contents in the digestive system and reduces blood sugar. Binds to bile acids in the small intestine reduce the cholesterol level.
Guar gum, beta glucan, pectins
Fermentable fibers
Consumed by intestinal bacteria and increase bulk, form short-chain fatty acids as a byproduct.

Fiber is two types

Soluble fiber                                                                                                    Lowers the cholesterol and blood sugar level. It dissolves in water  and ferments in the digestive system.  Softens the stool so easy to pass.
Rich sources of soluble fiber
Fruits as apple and banana contain  1.1 gm fiber per .5 cup
Vegetables as carrots and potatoes  
Oats, barley, and rye
Golden linseeds                   
Insoluble fiber
These do not dissolve in the water. Helps other food  to pass through the digestive system easily.
To form bulk helps to relieve constipation and maintain pH of the intestine.
Rich sources of insoluble fiber
Bran
Cereals
Wholemeal  bread
Nuts and seeds
Oatmeal and beans contain both soluble and insoluble fiber.
Plums and prune have insoluble fiber in thick skin and soluble fiber in the juicy pulp.
Dietary fibers
Dietary fiber found in fruit, vegetables, and whole grains.

Fiber   keeps our bowel movements regular. Relieve constipation, weight under control. Keep away from diabetes and heart disease. Lowers our cholesterol level, prevent from colon cancer, kidney stones.


Daily requirements

25 gm fiber for women
35 – 40 gm fiber for men
3 parts insoluble fiber and 1 part soluble fiber
Sources
Cooked dry beans (legumes)  .5 cup contains 8 gm of fiber
Dark green leafy vegetables .5 cup contains 6.4 gm fiber
Whole grains
28 gm contains 2.4 gm per serving

 Fiber rich food supplements

These are marketed  as nutritional supplements in gastrointestinal disorders, reducing body weight and lowers the cholesterol.
Soluble fiber supplements used in irritable bowel syndrome .Due to prebiotic soluble fiber inulin and oligosaccharides give relief  bowel diseases. Insoluble fiber resistant corn starch reduce symptoms in ulcerative colitis.
                     

 Fiber-rich food  function for good health

Bowl function
Fiber rich food forms the bulk and softens the stool. It maintains the bowel  healthy and prevents constipation. Increase rate of toxic substances from the gut.
Improve digestion
Heart health
Fiber rich food lowers the bad cholesterol level in the blood. Helps in bile excretion. So body absorbs less cholesterol.
Blood sugar check
Soluble fiber reduces the glucose release from digested  food. So prevent a rise in blood sugar level. Helps in diabetes control.
Weight loss
Eating high fiber rich food  keep us full for a longer time. So we eat less during weight loss program.
Oats, oats bran, psyllium husk and flaxseeds are rich in soluble and insoluble fibers. Our aim is to eat 5 serving of fruit and vegetables per day . So we take 25-  30 gm of fiber in our diet.                                                                                                            Adding fiber rich food to our diet is very much beneficial to our health. If we take high fiber diet it protects from heart disease by lowering cholesterol level.                                         Insoluble fibers prevent from constipation, colitis, colon cancer.  Diabetic people if eat fiber rich diet then need less insulin than others.                            
Fruits, vegetables, and whole grains are full of nutrients. So they maintain our overall health.
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