The importance of fiber in your daily diet can’t be overstated. Dietary fiber can be found in a wide range of plant-based foods and has a multitude of health benefits.
It’s easy to add fiber to your diet by making a few easy swaps. And we’re showing you how by sharing a list of 15 high-fiber foods as well as some of our favorite high-fiber recipes.
What Is Fiber & Why Is It Important?
Fiber is a type of carbohydrate that your body is not able to digest. Unlike other carbohydrates, which break down into sugar molecules, fiber cannot break down so it passes through your body undigested.
As part of your diet, fiber is important when it comes to how your body regulates the use of sugars. It can help you feel fuller, longer, and it keeps your blood sugar levels in check by delaying blood sugar rises after you eat.
Most importantly, fiber has been shown to lower your risk of developing certain health conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, constipation, breast cancer, colorectal cancer, and diverticular disease. This is because it affects our gut’s microbiome, reducing inflammation. Since many health conditions stem from or are worsened by chronic inflammation, fiber can play a beneficial role in prevention.
Soluble Fiber vs Insoluble Fiber: What’s the Difference?
Fiber can be broken down into two types, soluble and insoluble, both of which are beneficial to your overall health. Here are the differences between the two:
Soluble fiber – This type of fiber easily dissolves in water. It can help to lower your blood cholesterol levels as well as your blood glucose levels. You can find soluble fiber in foods such as nuts, beans, oatmeal, chia seeds, apples, blueberries, lentils, and beans.
Insoluble fiber – Insoluble fiber does not dissolve in water. Because of this, it helps to push the food you eat through your digestive system. Eating insoluble fiber can help to prevent constipation and promote regularity. You can find insoluble fiber in foods such as brown rice, legumes, quinoa, walnuts, seeds, and almonds. It’s also found in fruits with edible skins such as apples and pears and whole wheat products like wheat bran.
8 Tips For Adding More High Fiber Foods to Your Diet
It is recommended that adults and children consume a minimum of 25-35 grams of fiber each day as part of a healthy diet. Unfortunately, most adults only take in about 15 grams of fiber everyday. You can easily make a change by following these 8 tips:
- Swap highly processed white rice, bread, and pasta with whole foods such as brown rice and whole grains like millet, barley, and amaranth.
- Choose whole fruit over fruit juices.
- Get more high-fiber vegetables in your diet by adding them to soups, casseroles, or stir-fry dishes.
- Switch from highly processed, sugary breakfast cereals to options that list whole grain as the first ingredient.
- Instead of snacking on pretzels, chips, and crackers, grab a handful of raw vegetables or whole almonds.
- Sprinkle some high-fiber foods such as chia seeds, almonds, or ground flaxseeds on top of your oatmeal or cereal.
- Swap out meat with beans or legumes a few times per week.
- Avoid bloating and gas by drinking plenty of water as you increase your fiber intake.
15 High Fiber Foods
- Avocado – Just one cup of raw avocado contains 10 grams of fiber. They also contain high levels of vitamin C, E, and B vitamins as well as potassium, magnesium, and healthy fats.
- Raspberries – Tart and sweet, raspberries are full of vitamin C and manganese. They are also high in fiber with 8 grams in just a one cup serving.
- Strawberries – Rich in antioxidants, fresh strawberries contain 3 grams of fiber per cup and are a delicious way to get your daily dose of vitamin C and manganese.
- Artichokes – This tasty vegetable is a great source of fiber. Full of essential nutrients, one artichoke contains nearly 7 grams of fiber.
- Lentils – With a whopping 13 grams of fiber for every cooked cup, lentils are a great addition to your diet. Highly nutritious, they are loaded with protein.
- Chickpeas – Every cup of cooked chickpeas contains more than 12 grams of fiber. They’re also loaded with minerals and protein.
- Kidney beans – This popular bean is full of nutrients and plant-based protein. It’s also full of fiber, with 12 grams for every cooked cup.
- Oats – This healthy grain is high in antioxidants as well as vitamins and minerals. They also contain beta glucan, which is a powerful soluble fiber that helps both your blood sugar and cholesterol levels. Each cup of raw oats contains more than 16 grams of fiber.
- Almonds – High in healthy fats, nutrients, and vitamin E, this popular nut contains 4 grams of fiber in just three tablespoons, making it a tasty way to add more fiber to your diet.
- Popcorn – Who doesn’t love popcorn? With just over a gram of fiber for every air-popped cup, it’s a great snack choice. Just try to avoid adding unhealthy fats or excess salt.
- Chia seeds – These tiny black seeds contain high levels of calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus. They are also one of the best ways to add fiber with almost 10 grams of fiber per ounce.
- Dark chocolate – Arguably the most delicious way to add fiber to your diet, dark chocolate contains a whopping 3.1 grams of fiber per ounce. It also contains high levels of antioxidants and other important nutrients.
- Sweet potatoes – These sweet tubers are full of B vitamins, minerals, and beta carotene. They’re also packed with fiber, with nearly four grams of fiber in one medium-sized sweet potato.
- Broccoli – Nutrient dense, broccoli is full of potassium and iron as well as vitamins C, K, and B. Rich in antioxidants and protein, each cup contains about 2.5 grams of fiber.
- Apples – Apples are one of the most popular fruits for a reason. They’re not only tasty and satisfying, but they’re also full of antioxidants. With more than 4 grams of fiber in a medium-sized apple, they’re the perfect healthy snack.
12 High Fiber Recipes
- Oatmeal Breakfast Cookie | Eating Bird Food
- Roasted Sweet Potato Quinoa Black Bean Salad | Well Plated
- Triple-Berry Smoothie | Organize Yourself Skinny
- Quinoa Breakfast Bars | Food Faith Fitness
- Lentil Quinoa Meatballs | Stacey Homemaker
- Southwestern Chopped Salad | Rachel Cooks
- Avocado Toast with Roasted Chickpeas | Ruchis Kitchen
- Raspberry Mango Smoothie | Wholesomelicious
- Mexican Quinoa Wraps | Contentedness Cooking
- Easy Chia Pudding | Eating Bird Food
- Avocado Tuna BLTs | Goodie Godmother
- Honey Garlic Roasted Chickpeas Wrap | Food Faith Fitness
It’s easier than you think to increase your daily fiber intake. Get started with our list of high fiber foods and recipes.
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