Showing posts with label whole grains. Show all posts

Adequate Fiber is Essential to a Healthy Diet

Dietary fiber, originating in plant tissue, is indigestible. Although it has no calories and no nutritional value, fiber in the diet plays a tremendous role in preventing disease and maintaining good health.

dietary fiber

How Fiber Works in the Body

As fiber is consumed and passed through the body organs, it acts as a sponge, absorbing many times its own weight in liquid. This causes the feces to become soft and bulky and more easy to be expelled from the body. This quick passage through the intestines and out of the body is important, as constipation is a source of discomfort and the beginning of many illnesses.

The fiber also acts as a buffer against colon of the cancer as if reduces the contact that the toxin-filled feces has with the walls of the colon. Likewise, it is believed by some scientists that the increases liquid-content of high-fiber stool will be effective in diluting carcinogen-causing agents.

Types of Fiber and How They Function in the Body

There are two types of fiber.

Soluble fibers dissolve quickly and become sticky as they dissolve. They include pectin, which is found in fruits, legumes, nuts and some vegetables. Some soluble fiber can lower blood cholesterol levels which will, in turn, reduce the possibility of heart attacks and heart disease. The addition of soluble fibers in the diet should be coupled with the decreased intake of fat to be effective. Soluble fibers can also help control blood sugar levels in individuals suffering from diabetes.

Insoluble fibers are found in bran, vegetables and whole grains such as brown rice and whole-wheat bread. Insoluble fiber is important for moving bulk through the intestines quickly and also helps to control the pH level in the intestine. This action alleviates constipation by producing regular bowel movement.

Increase Fiber Intake Naturally

Although it is important to include an adequate amount of fiber in the diet, it is not recommended to take huge fiber supplements on a regular basis. Fiber pills are also not recommended as they lack the nutrients naturally found in high-fiber foods. Too much fiber can be the cause of bloating, digestive problems and intestinal gas. Excessive fiber can also lead to zinc, iron and mineral deficiencies.

Become knowledgeable of which foods are high fiber and begin to add them slowly to the diet. The skin of fruits and vegetables can be scrubbed and eaten to increase fiber intake. Vegetables should not be boiled, but rather eaten raw or lightly steamed. Eliminate products with white flour from the diet completely. Instead consume whole-grain cereals and breads and brown rice.

Fiber for Weight Loss and Weight Control

Eating fiber can be helpful when trying to lose weight. It provides a feeling of fullness that will help reduce hunger. Using fiber for diet or weight control can help with overall body tone because extra water is also being added to the diet. Be sure to include enough protein and fat with each meal to ensure a balanced diet.
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Eat to Boost Your Energy (Part 2)


Marmite (yeast extract) is a rich source of the B vitamins that are required to release energy from food. It's also high in salt, and this is why you must limit its consumption.. You can also get B vitamins from meat, fish, eggs, whole grains, beans and lentils.
Energy Boosters

Avocado: Fat is more calorie-dense than either carbohydrates or protein, which makes it the strongest energy source. The flip side is that too much fat can make you pile on the flab, and eating the wrong kinds of fat (saturated and trans fats) furs up your arteries. Avocados are rich in heart-healthy, artery-smoothing unsaturated fats, giving you the best of both worlds - energy, plus less risk of a heart attack.
Energy Boosters

Bananas are power snacks for many of us. Pre-wrapped by the nature and ready to unzip, they're packed with natural sugars and starches, providing a combination of instant and slow release energy. They're also a great source of potassium, which helps keep your blood pressure in check.
Energy Boosters

Kidney Beans: Like nuts, beans such as kidney beans contain that winning mixture of protein and carbohydrates that keeps you fuelled for longer. But pulses (beans and lentils) are higher in fiber, which slows down the release of energy even more, making beans a true ‘slow-burn' fuel. Cook up some lean mince with a tin of kidney beans, a tin of tomatoes, some chopped onion and as much chilli as possible, for a no-fuss chilli that will keep you going for hours
Energy Boosters

Coffee: Unlike the foods above, this isn't great nutritional advice - but it works. Caffeine aims the release of adrenaline. It revs you up, gives you a boost of energy, and makes you temporarily more alert. A strong coffee could be just what you need before an significant presentation. But be warned - the energy effect won't last, and when it wears off you'll probably feel more tired than ever.
Energy Boosters
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