People are focusing on a healthy lifestyle and mindful eating more than ever. But despite our best efforts, a major study has revealed that most of us may still not be getting enough fiber.
According to data from the American Heart Association, most people in the US simply aren’t eating enough fiber. The recommended fiber intake for adults is 30g per day, but the average intake in the US currently stands at just 15g. That’s half the recommended amount!
From keeping the gut healthy to regulating blood sugar, the importance of fiber is indisputable. With that said, there’s only one question to ask: are you getting enough fiber?
Why is fiber important?
Research shows that shifting from a low-fiber diet (less than 15g) to a high-fiber diet (aim for 30g) could be a serious game-changer. In fact, a high-fiber diet has the potential to reduce the risk of heart disease, bowel cancer and type-2 diabetes.
A high-fiber diet can also help you to maintain a healthy weight. This is because fiber is extremely filling, yet very low in calories. Fiber takes longer to digest than refined and processed food and swells in your stomach when it absorbs liquid, leaving you feeling more satisfied and fuller for longer.
At Purition, we agree that fiber is important for optimal health. Our products contain soluble and insoluble fiber from whole seeds and nuts, apple pectin and psyllium husk. Low carb and high in fiber, two servings a day of Purition will provide you with around 12-16g of fiber, depending on which flavor you choose. That’s equivalent to roughly 6 slices of wholewheat bread!
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What is fiber?
Okay, so you know that fiber is important — but what actually is it? Dietary fiber is a non-digestible complex carbohydrate. It’s found in a range of plant foods including fruits, vegetables, beans and legumes.
Fiber can be divided into two main categories: soluble and insoluble:
- Soluble fiber dissolves in water when it enters the stomach and transforms into a gel-like substance. Helps to stabilize blood sugar levels and lowers cholesterol. Found in oats, nuts, carrots, beans, apples, blueberries and more.
- Insoluble fiber doesn’t dissolve in water when it enters the stomach. Helps to promote bowel health and regularity and prevents constipation. Found in nuts, seeds, beans, fruit skins, wheat bran, green beans, cauliflower and more.
Both types of fiber will help you to feel satisfied for longer after a meal and lower the risk of numerous chronic conditions and diseases. Ultimately, fiber in all its forms is essential for good health — and you must get enough of it.
Signs that you’re not getting enough fiber
Not sure if you’re getting enough fiber in your day-to-day diet?
One of the most common symptoms of a fiber deficiency is stomach problems, such as constipation and irregular bowel movements. When it comes to digestion, fiber is your best friend — it attracts water to stools; keeping them soft and allowing them to pass easily. On the other hand, if your diet lacks fiber, stools can become hard and slow-moving, leading to constipation.
If you’re not getting much fiber in your diet, you might also struggle to feel full and satisfied, even after a meal. High-fiber meals take your body longer to digest and provide volume for little-to-no calories, making you feel fuller without dramatically increasing your calorie intake.
If either of these situations sound familiar to you, you might benefit from boosting the amount of fiber in your diet.
How to get more fiber in your diet
The importance of fiber is clear, but what’s the best way to pack in more of this good stuff?
First things first, it’s important to ease in slowly. A sudden increase in fiber can play havoc with your digestive system and bring on less-than-ideal symptoms like bloating and gas. While temporary, these symptoms can be minimized by taking things slow and increasing your fiber intake over the course of several weeks.
To get more fiber in your diet, you simply need to start consuming more high-fiber foods. Natural whole plant foods like fruit, veggies, nuts, seeds, beans and pulses are typically very high in fiber. As a general rule, the more processed and refined a food is, the less fiber it will contain.
Make a start by:
- Making sure you’re eating plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables every day — ideally, add a generous portion to every meal
- Replacing processed, sugary snacks with a handful of nuts or seeds
- Sprinkling seeds on top of salads or adding them to smoothies
- Adding half a tin of legumes — such as chickpeas, kidney beans, peas and lentils — to your lunch or evening meal
- Keeping the skins on fruits and vegetables (such as potatoes, carrots and apples) rather than peeling them
Another easy and convenient way to increase your fiber intake is to swap out your usual breakfast or lunch (or both!) for a glass of Purition. Our real food blends are made with 70% nuts and seeds,your choice of either vegetarian (whey) or vegan (pea, pumpkin, sunflower & hemp) protein and extra soluble and insoluble fiber for good measure.
Have one or two of our shakes over the course of the day and combine this with a nicely balanced homemade meal with lots of fresh vegetables. Before long, these small and manageable changes will see you reaping the benefits of a high-fiber diet!
If you’re new to Purition and would like to try it, a Discovery Box is a great place to start.
It’s quick, filling and easy to prepare. With a discovery box, you’ll get to try all the flavors shipped fast and free!
Try them all!
Not sure where to start? Get a Discovery Box!
You’ll get one serving of each flavor –12 total–so you can quickly find your favorites! And Discovery Boxes ship straight to your door fast and FREE!