Fiber is an essential part of any healthy diet. This nutrient helps keep our digestive system regular and lowers our risk of diabetes and heart disease. It also helps us feel fuller for longer and may help to lose weight. But actually getting enough fiber into our daily diet can be difficult.
- Women should try to eat at least 21 to 25 grams of fiber a day, while men should aim for 30 to 38 grams per day, according to the American Heart Association.
Studies have shown that nearly all Americans fail to eat enough fiber. Instead of eating vegetables, nuts, fruits and seeds, more than half of the calories Americans eat come from ultra-processed foods, which are less filling and raise our blood sugars higher than minimally processed foods.
So how do we fix this? Let's learn about fiber, fiber rich foods and how to eat a high fiber diet. Plus, I'll share with you how to EASILY get 10 grams of fiber at breakfast with a delicious meal.
Fiber is simply a type of carbohydrate found in plant-based foods that the body can't digest.
Because fiber isn't digested, it doesn't give us calories. Fiber rich foods may also contain other types of carbs, such as starch or sugar. While we don't get calories from the fiber in these foods, we do get calories from their sugars and starches.
How does it work?
Fiber is essential in keeping the digestive tract working smoothly. Since we do not digest it, the fiber in food passes into the intestine and absorbs water. The undigested fiber creates "bulk" so the muscles in the intestine can push waste out of the body. (UMass Amherst research)
But there's not just one type of fiber, it comes in two varieties and both are beneficial to health. The difference between soluble and insoluble fiber is explained below in an article by Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.
- Soluble fiber, which dissolves in water, can help lower glucose levels as well as help lower blood cholesterol. Foods with soluble fiber include oatmeal, nuts, beans, lentils, apples and blueberries.
- Insoluble fiber, which does not dissolve in water, can help food move through your digestive system, promoting regularity and helping prevent constipation. Foods with insoluble fibers include wheat, whole wheat bread, whole grain couscous, brown rice, legumes, carrots, cucumbers and tomatoes.
Fiber rich foods you should be eating
So how do you ensure you’re getting enough fiber? Well, it starts by knowing which foods are high in fiber and eating more of those foods. Some common foods people ask are: how much fiber in a banana? How much fiber in oatmeal?
Here's a list of some fiber rich foods that will help you fly past the daily recommendation. Also a great guide for those on a high fiber diet!
|FRUITS||SERVING SIZE||TOTAL FIBER (grams)|
|Apple (w. skin)||1 medium||4.5|
|VEGETABLES||SERVING SIZE||TOTAL FIBER (grams)|
|Green Peas, boiled||1 cup||9.0|
|Broccoli, boiled||1 cup (chopped)||5.0|
|Brussel sprouts, boiled||1 cup||4.0|
|Potato, w. skin, baked||1 medium||4.0|
|Kale, cooked||1 cup||5.0|
|GRAINS||SERVING SIZE||TOTAL FIBER (grams)|
Pinole Chia Oatmeal
Spaghetti, whole-wheat, cooked
|Quinoa, cooked||1 cup||5.0|
|Brown Rice||1 cup||3.5|
|LEGUMES, NUTS, SEEDS||SERVING SIZE||TOTAL FIBER (grams)|
Split peas, boiled
|Black beans, canned||1 cup||10.0|
|Chia Seeds||1 ounce||10.0|
So many options, right?
Yes, so many good ones but our favorite way to get our fiber in is with Pinole Chia Oatmeal in the morning. Each of our 3 flavors, Banana Cinnamon, Peanut Butter & Cacao and the Original, contain a whopping 10 grams of fiber.
That means you get a good portion of the daily recommended amount of fiber you should be eating, plus you'll feel fuller for longer and you'll get your digestive system moving. Great for a high fiber diet! Go here to purchase today, we're also on Amazon! Credit to Ericka Sanchez at Nibbles and Feast for this amazing shot!
How to Eat More Fiber Rich Foods
- Eat a bowl of salad each day Add yummy leafy greens, raw vegetables such as broccoli, cucumber or sweet corn. Top your salad with nuts and seeds, such as sunflower kernels and almonds. And don't forget your fruit! Add chopped fruit such as apples, strawberries or pears!
- Make smoothies. Pack your smoothies with tasty vegetables to increase the fiber content. Some vegetables that go well in smoothies are zucchini, cauliflower, cucumber, and leafy greens (kale, spinach).
- Eat legumes daily such as beans and lentils. Add them to salads, stews, and veggies patties.
- Eat high-fiber sides such as grains like quinoa and brown rice or grilled vegetables, such as brussels sprouts or broccoli.
- Eat Pinole Chia Oatmeal in the morning The Pinole Project's signature oatmeal blend is packed with 10 grams of fiber to keep you full and focused all morning. Bonus: great for digestion! Check out this delicious recipe of high-fiber superfood breakfast cookies!