Fiber is a type of carbohydrate of vegetable origin (fruits, vegetables, seeds, legumes) that is not digested by digestive enzymes (it is not absorbed) and passes through the entire digestive tract; once it reaches the large intestine, the fiber feeds the beneficial bacteria that live there, helping to improve the state of health of the system.
We have all heard of the importance of consuming foods rich in fiber; almost always we associate these foods with a good intestinal transit, but surely your body has manifested repeatedly the following signs:
- You go low in energy when you eat a lot of simple, loaded carbohydrates that instantly fill you with energy, but after a while you feel a sense of extreme tiredness. Fiber helps slow down digestion, which means that sugar is released into our bloodstream little by little, stopping the creation spikes and lows of energy like those triggered by simple carbohydrates.
- You’re still hungry after eating a lot of not-so-nutritious foods. Soluble fiber as it dissolves in water, forms a sticky consistency when coming into contact with the body’s fluids which helps slow down the digestive process making you feel fuller.
- You don’t lose weight even if you keep trying any diet. Fiber creates a feeling of fullness, because it requires more chewing and more time for the stomach to digest it in such a way that it is essential when you are in a process of weight loss. When you are full, you will eat fewer calories.
- Your bowel is lazy and you suffer from constipation all the time. Insoluble fiber is one that our body needs to prevent constipation since it adds size to the content of your gastrointestinal tract. This helps maintain movement in our intestines, facilitating the expulsion of stool.
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- You are beginning to suffer from general and chronic health problems, your medical tests are not very positive: high cholesterol, high blood sugar, they are all related to a poor diet in nutrients. Fiber from whole grains, such as oats, brown rice or barley, can reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke, obesity and diabetes type 2.
What foods should I consume?
As we mentioned earlier there are two types of fiber; it is important that you include both in your daily diet (25 gr daily):
- Eat whole foods such as chia seeds, flaxseed, brown rice and oatmeal.
- Do not skip breakfast! It’s the perfect time to eat more fiber and regulate your normal glucose levels, so you prevent diabetes. Add chia and flaxseed and go! It may interest you: The reasons why breakfast is important.
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3. Include in your diet 4 servings of vegetables and whole fruits with peel such as apples, pears, tangerines and plums; remember that the fiber resides mainly in the pulps and in the shell. They are 25 gr daily that cannot be missing from your plate.
4. Other sources of fiber are legumes such as beans, lentils and chickpeas and vegetables such as chard and spinach.