Part of a balanced diet means getting in your fibre. No food group gets left behind, after all. Commonly referred to as ‘roughage’ by many, fibre is a vital assistant to our digestive system and helps us digest all the nutrients we need from the food we eat.
We’ve all seen the (let’s face it) bland breakfast cereals and alternatives that offer to up your fibre levels during the most important meal of the day (or during a satisfying cereal late night snack), but did you know that there are other, somewhat tastier ways to improve your fibre consumption? The Lean Protein being one of them, by the way.
If you didn’t, you’re about to get to know. And you’re going to learn about all things fibre on the way, too.
What is fibre?
Fibre is a type of carbohydrate that is naturally sourced from foods like wholegrains, beans, nuts and more.
There are a host of different types of fibre, with each having varying affects on the body, influencing food consumption, energy harbouring and absorption of things like sugar that we gain from the foods and drinks we consume.
Why do we need fibre in our diets?
It’s recommended that adults consume around 30g of fibre a day, and to do this, you need to ensure that you’re eating a variety of foods such as wholemeal bread, brown pasta, fruit, vegetables, and beans… although this list is not extensive.
Healthy fibre consumption is associated with the lowering in the risk of heart disease, reducing the risk of strokes, minimising the potential for type 2 diabetes, aiding in weight loss, and even minimising the risk of bowel cancer.
The benefits of dietary fibre
Aside from the above benefits, dietary fibre has been linked to several health benefits, including:
- The assistance in the maintenance of healthy bones
- Helps to control a healthy blood sugar level
- Assists in weight management
- Helps to lower cholesterol levels
- Improves water and nutrient absorption
Which foods are high in fibre?
As we’ve mentioned above, there are several foods that are great sources of dietary fibre. To make it easier, though, we’ve narrowed down some of our favourites that we feel can be easily added into your everyday meals, shakes or snacks to make adding fibre into your diet as easy as possible.
Whether you opt for Granny Smiths, Pink Lady’s or event dried apple slices (more on this later, though), apples are a great source of fibre, as well as being of course one of your five-a-day.
A fantastic source of healthy fat, a great addition to every smoothie and always a winner on toast, our friend the avocado is also a great source of dietary fibre, to add to its list of benefits.
This versatile vegetable isn’t just good in a stir fry. Broccoli is a great source of dietary fibre and can be added to a multitude of meals, making this one of our favourite high fibre foods.
- Dried fruits
Whether you opt for dried apricots, dried dates, dried figs or like we earlier mentioned, dried apples, dried fruits are delicious, great healthy snacks, easy to chuck in your bag for on the go and a great source of fibre, too.
In investigations that aim to determine the importance of dietary fibre, it is widely considered an integral part of a balanced diet, playing an important role in reducing the risk of diseases, health problems and ailments.
With this in mind, it’s important to consider your meals, snacks and supplements to ensure you are providing your body with the nutrients and nourishment that it needs to function properly and efficiently, both to minimise any health risks and maximise your performance, too.
- Maćkowiak, K., Torlińska-Walkowiak, N., & Torlińska, B. (2016). Dietary fibre as an important constituent of the diet. Advances in Hygiene & Experimental Medicine/Postepy Higieny i Medycyny Doswiadczalnej, 70. Click here.