Monday, December 18, 2017

Boost Your Fiber Intake

Consume as many fruits and veggies as possible. 

The superstars for fiber content include berries (raspberries #1), snow peas, apples, canned tomato products, pumpkin, cauliflower, avocado, spinach, asparagus, broccoli, carrots, Brussels sprouts, sweet potato, okra and winter squash.

Eat more beans – strive for one serving daily. 

Measure for measure, beans provide more fiber than any other food (about 3-4x more than fruits/veggies). All of them are fiber superstars so choose what you enjoy the most. Don’t forget about bean dips like hummus which are delicious!

Make a high fiber cereal (at least 5 grams per serving) a part of your daily breakfast. 

There are at least 30 varieties/brands now available that fit the bill. Personally, one of my breakfasts of choice includes 1 cup mixed – fruit usually berries/apples (7 grams fiber), ½ cup high fiber cereal (5 grams fiber), ½ cup of Greek-style plain yogurt (2 grams fiber) and 2 tablespoons of wheat germ (2 grams fiber).

Eat physically intact whole grains– brown rice, oatmeal, quinoa, barley, farro, etc vs. their refined, processed white counterparts.

Substitute 100% whole grain bread, crackers, etc., for their refined counterparts.Numerous brands are available. Check out the newer 100% whole grain crackers – Multigrain Wheat Thins, Triscuits, Ak-mak, Kashi Heart to Heart etc. Many provide 3 grams of fiber per serving.

Choose multigrain pasta over regular. I love the taste of Barilla Plus.

Include more physically intact whole grains—brown rice, oatmeal, quinoa, barley, farro, black rice, etc.  To get the most health and metabolic benefits from the fiber you eat, you need to have an abundance of good bacteria residing in your colon. Here are the key strategies for establishing and maintaining a robust supply of fat-fighting beneficial gut bacteria.

Eat an abundance of plant-based, high fiber foods as noted above. 

Good bacteria “feed” off of fiber and the more real–food fiber you eat, the more good bacteria you will have in your gut. This is THE MOST POWERFUL and EFFECTIVE of all five of these strategies. Honestly, if you do not eat an abundance of fiber, success is IMPOSSIBLE.

Include probiotic foods regularly in your diet. 
Yogurt, kefir, tempeh, sauerkraut, kimchi, and any other “fermented” foods that contain live bacteria.

Do not take antibiotics unless medically indicated. 

And if you must take an antibiotic, be sure to take a daily probiotic supplement as directed (they are over-the-counter) while you are on the antibiotic and for two full weeks thereafter.

Get out in nature and get dirty. The soil contains an entire ecosystem of good bacteria. Gardening is highly recommended, especially vegetable gardening!

Consider a regular, daily supplement of a high quality probiotic.

Probiotics are measured in CFUs (Colony Forming Units). This number should be prominently displayed on the front of box or bottle you are looking at. You want to find a probiotic that has a range between 3-50 billion CFUs that specifically fits your unique digestion.

The lower end of the range, 3 billion CFUs, is what we would call a daily maintenance product. This potency would be well suited for a person with an otherwise healthy digestive system that needs to replenish the probiotics lost daily due to modern living.

No comments:

Post a Comment