Dietary fiber: Essential for a healthy diet

http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-living/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/in-depth/fiber/art-20043983

Dietary fiber: Essential for a healthy diet

WHY FIBERS???

Fiber provides many health benefits. Here’s how to fit more into your diet.

 

Why Eat  fiber?

We’ve probably heard it before. But do you know why fiber is so good for your health?

Dietary Fibers:

found mainly in

Fruits,

Vegetables,

Whole grains

and Legumes are probably best known for its ability to prevent or relieve Constipation.

Foods that are containing fiber can provide other health benefits as well, such as helping to maintain a healthy weight and lowering your risk of diabetes and heart disease.

Selecting tasty foods that provide fiber isn’t difficult. Find out how much dietary fiber you need, the foods that contain it, and how to add them to meals and snacks.

Dietary Fibers???

Dietary fiber, also known as roughage or bulk, includes all parts of plant foods that your body can’t digest or absorb. Unlike other food components, such as fats, proteins or carbohydrates — which your body breaks down and absorbs — fiber isn’t digested by your body. Instead, it passes relatively intact through your stomach, small intestine, colon and out of your body.

Fiber is commonly classified as soluble (it dissolves in water) or insoluble (it doesn’t dissolve):

  • 1)
  • Soluble Fiber
  •  This type of fiber dissolves in water to form a gel-like material. It can help lower blood cholesterol and glucose levels. Soluble fiber is found in oats, peas, beans, apples, citrus fruits, carrots, barley and psyllium.
  • 2)
  • Insoluble fiber
  •  This type of fiber promotes the movement of material through your digestive system and increases stool bulk, so it can be of benefit to those who struggle with constipation or irregular stools. Whole-wheat flour, wheat bran, nuts, beans and vegetables, such as cauliflower, green beans and potatoes, are good sources of insoluble fiber.

Most plant-based foods, such as oatmeal and beans, contain both soluble and insoluble fiber. However, the amount of each type varies in different plant foods. To receive the greatest health benefit, eat a wide variety of high-fiber foods.

How much fiber do you need?

How much fiber do you need each day? The Institute of Medicine, which provides science-based advice on matters of medicine and health, gives the following daily recommendations for adults:

Age 50 or younger Age 51 or older
Men 38 grams 30 grams
Women 25 grams 21 grams

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