If you’ve been hearing the word “fiber” thrown around a lot more these days, it’s for a good reason. Research is starting to unlock the benefits of daily dietary fiber intake, suggesting that a diet rich in some types of fiber may help lower cholesterol, regulate blood sugar, manage weight, and regularity.
Fiber comes in two types: soluble fiber and insoluble fiber. Soluble fiber works to slow the movement of food from the stomach to the intestine. Some natural foods that contain a healthy serving of soluble fiber include fruits, vegetables, beans, and lentils.
Insoluble fiber holds onto water, which allows it to help regulate bowel movements, and it’s not digestible, meaning that it passes through our digestive system in its original form. Some foods that contain insoluble fiber include wheat bran, nuts, and vegetables, such as cauliflower and green beans.
While most of us know that fiber is an important nutrient, many of us just aren’t getting enough of it in our diets. So, that begs the question: how much fiber are we supposed to get every day?
How Much Fiber Do We Need Daily?
The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics recommends that adult women get about 25 grams of fiber per day, while adult men should aim for 38 grams. Women over the age of 70 need about 21 grams of fiber a day, while men over the age of 70 should try to consume 30 grams of fiber. If you believe you’re getting under the recommended daily amount, add more fiber slowly, and increase fluids, to prevent constipation and bloating.
Foods Rich in Dietary Fiber
Here are some foods that will help you incorporate more fiber into your diet:
- Whole grain breads that contain 2-4 g of dietary fiber per slice
- Raw fruits and vegetables (skin on, when possible)
- Lentil or edamame pasta
- Chia seeds
- Bran, sprinkled into soups, pastas, and baked goods
- Whole grain crackers
- Whole grain cereals
- Dried fruit
Fiber supplements are another good option if you’re looking to increase your overall fiber intake. Benefiber Healthy Shape is a plant-based prebiotic fiber that’s taste-free and dissolves completely in almost any liquid.‡ When you stir 3 ¼ teaspoons into an 8 oz beverage and take two times daily, not only will you be increasing your fiber intake, but Benefiber Healthy Shape will help you feel fuller for longer.* **
*Clinical studies show benefits with regular use.
**These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
Use as directed.
‡ Not recommended for carbonated beverages.