Most people know that fiber is important to maintaining regular
bowels, but did you also know it is one of the secrets to managing
First I will tell you a little about fiber. It is only found in plant based foods and there are two types of it, soluble and insoluble. Soluble fiber takes up extra water in your digestive
tract and what is primarily responsible for colon regularity. As it
passes through your digestive system it also picks up excess sugar
and cholesterol, helping to regulate the body (that's why Cheerios
is so good for the heart).
Insoluble fiber moves quickly through the body since it cannot dissolve in water. It picks up carcinogens and other harmful products in the body and whisks them out of the
body before they get a chance to do damage. Both types of fiber are
attributed to reducing the risk of cancer.
As for weight loss, foods that are highest in fiber, often are very low in calories and
fat and they help you feel full for a longer period of time. Fiber
is the trick to eating carbohydrates, as the higher the fiber
content (fiber is a carb), the better it is for you. High fiber
foods include whole grains, fruits and vegetables (the skins and
peels contain the most fiber), and legumes.
If you do not regularly eat a lot of fiber, it is important to start slow and gradually build
up your intake to prevent being uncomfortable. Also, due to the
increase bulk in your digestive system, make sure to drink plenty of
water every day to keep things moving smoothly.