I recall reading a book many, many years ago at my grandma’s house about eating more fiber to lose weight. I think this was back in the 60’s! Since that time, I have read so many different accounts in magazines, research articles and books of the importance of fiber in the diet. And, you and I are probably not getting enough. In chiropractic school it was taught to us and I have encouraged many of my chiropractic patients to increase their consumption of this important nutrient. So, what is fiber and what are some of the health benefits of fiber?
There are two basic kinds of fiber – soluble and insoluble – and you need to have both! Soluble fiber (dried beans, oats, barley and some fruits and vegetables) dissolves in water absorbing fluid in your digestive system. It also absorbs fats and cholesterol. Insoluble fiber (wheat bran, whole grain products and vegetables) acts as the body’s “scrubber” moving through your digestive system removing substances from your colon that can be described as “crap”. This kind of fiber also speeds up the time it takes to eliminate the wastes from your bowels. It also has other health benefits, including reducing the risk of:
In order to consume the proper amount of fiber in the diet an adult should consume at least 25 to 35 grams per day. When your diet is becomes properly balanced with fiber, you must drink plenty of fluids each day too. This will help reduce the risk of abdominal discomfort and intestinal blockage.
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