Fiber is one of the most important nutrients you can have in your diet and is found in whole grains, legumes, fruits and vegetables. According to Everyday Health, men should get 30 to 38 grams of fiber a day while women should get 25 grams a day. Eating enough fiber can have a positive effect on your weight and overall health. Here are five good reasons to increase your fiber intake:
It Can Help With Weight Loss
If you are trying to lose weight, fiber is definitely something you should add to your diet right now. Foods that contain a lot of fiber tend to be more filling, so you will stay fuller longer and be less likely to overeat. For example, if you have oatmeal with nuts for breakfast, you should remain full until lunchtime. Talk to a weight loss clinic for more information on how fiber can help you lose weight.
It Can Prevent Constipation
Constipation can make you feel very bloated and cause you to hold onto extra pounds. Instead of relying on laxatives to relieve constipation, just increase the fiber in your diet. High-fiber foods will soften stools, making them much easier to pass.
It Can Help Control High Blood Sugar
Another great benefit of fiber is that it can control high blood sugar. If you have type 2 diabetes, increasing your fiber intake can delay the absorption of sugar, lowering your blood sugar levels.
It Can Improve Heart Health
If you eat plenty of fiber, you can improve the health of your heart. According to WebMD, fiber does this by lowering your blood pressure, reducing your cholesterol and helping you maintain a healthy weight. Increasing your fiber intake can help reduce your risk of heart disease.
It Can Provide You With More Energy
Fiber can also provide you with more energy throughout the day. If you have more energy, you will be motivated to exercise more frequently, which can improve your weight loss efforts. Instead of having a doughnut or bagel for breakfast, for example, eat some oatmeal or whole grain toast with peanut butter.
As you can see, adding more fiber to your diet can help you become healthier. However, you should increase your fiber intake slowly to avoid shocking your body. It is also very important to drink plenty of water as you increase your fiber intake. If you drink eight cups of water a day, you can absorb the fiber better and avoid issues, such as cramping and bloating.