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Fiber is one of the most ignored components of food. While many praises are sung about the importance of having enough of it to prevent and ease constipation, fiber has many other benefits as well. It keeps various bodily processes functioning smoothly, and protects your organs from damage, improving your overall wellness levels.
Fiber is pretty much the only element of food that doesn’t get absorbed into the body. It is of two types: soluble fiber and insoluble fiber, both of which get treated differently in the digestion system, and have different roles to play. The soluble variety gets broken down into a paste-like substance in the stomach and helps slow down the digestion process, thereby increasing the absorption of nutrition from food, and lowering sugar and cholesterol levels. The insoluble kind of fiber stays unchanged from plate to waste, and plays the role of making it easier for the body’s wastes to move through the intestines.
The recommended daily amount of fiber is 38 grams for men and 25 grams for women, and this goes down with age. However, most of us don’t get enough fiber unless we’re in serious trouble with our digestive systems, and it’s only then that we seek it as a curative measure. But it is essential to not reach that stage since insufficient fiber can lead to health complications.
Some foods that will provide you with adequate fiber:
Loaded with proteins, iron and a host of other good nutrients, the different types of dals are an excellent source of fiber. Include a bowl of them in your daily meals. They can also be eaten post a workout session, and can be prepared in a variety of ways.
Discover the different types of pulses here.
Fond of carbs but looking to get fit? Choose the healthier variety of carbohydrates, i.e. whole grains that are unprocessed. It has all the goodness of rice in taste and nutrition, and is a healthier option.
Explore the benefits of whole grains here.
While an apple a day is said to keep a doctor away, a tall glass of orange juice a day will keep a whole list of diseases like diabetes, anemia and allergies away, while also giving you sufficient fiber.
Read more about the wonders of orange juice here.
Made with whole grains and usually accompanied by seeds and nuts, eating muesli for breakfast makes for a power-packed start to the day.
Click here to find different varieties of muesli.
Flax seeds not just provide you with the required daily allowance of fiber, but also help regulate your cholesterol levels, and boost your metabolism.
Click here to find out more about the benefits of flax seeds.
Here are some innovative ways to add more fiber to your diet:
However, as they say, it’s never right to get too much of a good thing. Always keep a watch on the amount of fiber you are consuming since going overboard with it can have a negative impact too: You may experience stomach disorders like bloating, diarrhea, gas, etc.
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