Fill Up With Fiber

November 4, 2012 by  
Filed under Weight Loss Foods, Weight Loss Tips

Fiber is a dieter’s best friend.  In addition to supporting weight loss, it helps you feel full longer, lowers blood cholesterol levels, regulates your blood sugar and keeps your colon healthy.  Recent studies have shown that dieters who increase the amount of fiber in their diets lose more weight than those who don’t.

Getting enough fiber every day also prevents constipation while cutting your risk of developing serious illnesses like cardiovascular disease and cancer, but how much is enough?  Nutritionists recommend about 25 to 40 grams per day.  Most people get only half that amount or less.

If you know your diet is lacking fiber, you can take daily supplements to help you get to the recommended amount.  Delicious fiber bars that are popular and easy to find at most grocery stores offer another option.  However, it’s best to increase your fiber by eating lots of fresh and healthy whole foods. Most natural high-fiber foods are also lower in calories, which is a great benefit for dieters.

Increase your fiber intake gradually to allow your body to adjust.  Eating too much fiber too quickly can lead to severe bloating and gas pains. It’s also a good idea to drink more water when you eat more fiber. Increasing your water consumption will guarantee that the fiber will pass through your digestive system quickly and easily.

Here are 10 easy ways to help you start fitting more fiber in your diet:

1. Enjoy whole fresh or dried fruit that includes the peels daily.
2. Choose whole-grain breads, cereals and rice.
3. Eat a salad with every meal.
4. Combine fiber-rich foods. For example, top your oatmeal with fruit to double the amount of fiber.
5. Add dried beans to your menu on a regular basis. Beans, peas and legumes are inexpensive foods and great sources of both fiber and protein.
6. Eat a handful of nuts every day; almonds are an excellent choice, but you should keep in mind that they do contain a lot of calories. Don’t go overboard with them.
7. Go crazy with fresh vegetables. Eat as many as you want!
8. Choose popcorn over potato chips or pretzels for your snack.
9. Sprinkle yogurt and low-fat ice cream with ground flax seed.
10. Add frozen vegetables to pasta sauce.

Adding fiber to your diet is a lot easier than you think!

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