Did you know why oats are considered a healthier meal than rice? Because it is rich in fiber, whereas rice is rich in carbohydrates.
Both foods have their nutrients and benefits, but oats will focus more on slimming down. This is the reason why most trainers or nutritionists ask you to cut down on the rice portions of your diet to help you lose weight.
In this blog, we are going to understand the aspects of fiber that will help you shed that extra weight. We will also cover the right amount of fiber suitable for your body and some tips to incorporate it into your diet.
So, if you are someone who is looking to tone down without hitting the gym, or want to explore the benefits of fiber, then this blog is for you.
How Does Fiber Contribute To Weight Management?
Fiber is one of the main ingredients that plays a part in the digestion process of our body. There are two types of fiber that one can benefit from. Soluble fiber, which is easily dissolved in water, helps bulk up the stool.
And insoluble fiber, which is not easily dissolved in water and can be digested by the good bacteria in your large intestine,
It contributes to weight management by:
Reduces Belly Fat
Soluble fiber, when mixed with water, can bulk out the stool and soften it. It will help you easily pass the stool from your body without any signs of constipation.
With this process, soluble fiber not only reduces belly fat but also lowers the risk of fat gain. There is a study that has proven that a daily intake of 10 grams of fiber can help you reduce your 3.7% chances of gaining belly fat.
Another advantage of soluble fiber is that it can help suppress the appetite, which results in lower calorie intake.
This ultimately results in reduced weight and improved regulation of hormones in your body. Soluble fiber also takes another approach to reducing appetite by slowing down the digestion of glucose, which results in reduced feelings of hunger.
Soluble Fat Helps Feed Off Good Gut Bacteria
Good bacteria is something that helps in the absorption of food to optimal levels so that it can help in bodily functions. Whereas bad bacteria can cause infection or deteriorate the state of any organ and stop the heart,
Studies have shown that soluble fiber can help produce a variety of gut bacteria and reduce the risk of developing belly fat.
This is not only good news for individuals who are trying to tone down but also for those who are on the verge of developing type 2 diabetes, insulin resistance, and heart disease.
When these good gut bacteria are present in your intestine, they are responsible for your weight management, controlling blood sugar, improving immune function, and brain health.
Regulate Blood Sugar Levels
Fiber-rich food helps reduce blood sugar levels, which are necessary for optimal health. Soluble fiber in particular helps slow down the process of glucose absorption, which balances the blood sugar levels.
This is beneficial for those living with Type 2 diabetes or who are on the verge of developing diabetes. With decreased blood sugar levels, there are reduced cholesterol levels, which is ideal for a healthy heart.
This also reduces the occurrence of heart attacks or cardiovascular diseases.
What Is The Optimal Fiber Amount?
There is always a recommended dose when it comes to fiber intake for it to have health benefits. Fiber in soluble form is better than insoluble fiber.
So make sure to get the right amount of daily fiber for your weight-loss journey. To determine the correct dosage of fiber, the nutritionist will look over your age, sex, and health complications.
As per the Food And Drugs Administration, fiber intake for women should be between 25 and 28 grams per day if they are under 50 years old. For senior adult females, the bar is 22 grams of fiber per day.
Fiber intake for men below the age of 50 is 31–34 grams of fiber per day, and for senior male adults, the bar is 28 grams per day.
It is clearly evident that men need to have more fiber than women because they are more physically active. On a daily basis, individuals are only able to intake 16 grams of fiber every day, which is not ideal.
Incorporating Fiber-Rich Food In Your Diet
Soluble fiber intake should be incorporated into your diet to reduce belly fat effectively. Here are some tips on how you can include fiber-rich foods in your daily diet.
- Go for fruits rather than fruit juices
- Enjoy a bowl of lentils and beans every day
- Have chia seeds sprinkled on your yogurt, smoothies, salads, or oatmeal.
- Switch to whole-grain bread, pasta, and rice instead of regular ones
- Enjoy carrot sticks instead of a bag of chips for snacking
- Always opt for unprocessed food and home-cooked meals over store-bought packaged foods
- Have herbal teas or infused water with citrus fruits
- Add nuts to your bowl of yogurt, or salads, or eat them as it is for stress-eating
- Go for bran cereals or whole grain cereals that have high fiber content
- Switch to almond milk that has fortified fiber intake
- Greek yogurt is your better choice
- Stay hydrated at all times, as it will maintain your regular bowel movements
Consuming fiber-rich food helps in toning down, with the added effort of working out. You need to up your weight loss technique with extra precision and fiber intake.
To increase your fiber intake, always take baby steps because it can easily lead you to irritable bowel movements or any other health complications.
Fruits and veggies are your go-to partners when it comes to fiber, so add them generously into your diet.
Berries, apples, sweet potato, bell peppers, Brussels sprouts, quinoa, almonds, black beans, and walnuts are some exemplary fiber-rich foods. So, snack smarter and embrace the crunch of fiber!
- Breneman, C. B., & Tucker, L. (2013). Dietary fibre consumption and insulin resistance – the role of body fat and physical activity [Abstract].
- Dietary Guidelines for Americans: 2015–2020 eighth edition. (2015).