If you are like many fitness fan, you possibly grew up hearing about how good fiber is for you and the many benefits of eating fiber for weight loss. But, the question is does fiber help weight loss?
Well, I’m certain it does. That’s the truth folks, fiber can help you burn fat fast and also gives you a stronger gut. In addition, studies have shown that eating enough fiber can help lower cholesterol, stabilise your blood sugar, and help fight against heart disease and colon cancer.
Our only source of getting fiber is from plants. That’s right mates, you get fiber only from plant foods and is often called dietary fiber. Fiber is the only form of carbohydrate that cannot change to sugar when eaten, unlike sugar and starches, but also your body can’t break fiber down. So, the fiber you consume always ends up in your large intestine undigested. The impact it has on your body at that time depends on the type of fiber you eat.
We have two known forms of dietary fiber, namely, soluble, and insoluble fiber. You’ve possibly heard people say that you should eat lot of soluble fiber as it’s the one that will boost your performance. This is far from the reality, as both soluble and insoluble fiber offer incredible benefits for your health as well as weight loss journey. So, in essence, you really need both in your diet.
Soluble means “able to be dissolved, especially in water”. Thus, soluble fiber dissolves in water and turns into a semi-liquid substance in your intestine. This new formed jellylike substance combine with the excess cholesterol given off in your liver as bile acids. Now you understand one importance of soluble fiber, as it binds to cholesterol and keeps it from circulating through your blood, as a result lowering your cholesterol levels in the blood.
In addition, it prevents blood sugar and insulin spike after you eat, especially high carbs, and also keeps you full for longer periods, resulting in better absorption of essential vitamins and minerals. So, it helps maximise the benefits you get out of your food by slowing stomach emptying.
Similarly, as the name implies, insoluble means "incapable of being dissolved”. This form of fiber is generally known as roughage. It does not get dissolved, so causes an increase in fiber bulk and as a result help clearing your stomach of all its waste. It also helps contain ghrelin, a peptide hormone that triggers the feeling of hunger, for several hours after eating. Therefore, you always inclined to eat less when you get plenty of insoluble fiber in your diet.
Best sources of soluble fiber
Best sources of insoluble fiber
Beans and peas
Nuts and seeds e.g. Walnut
Vegetables e.g Kale
Oats and / or Oatmeal
Nuts and seeds e.g. Almond
Whole grain foods e.g cereals
Vegetables e.g Broccoli
As stated earlier, fiber help clean your stomach of all its waste and as a result reduces the time digested food sits in your intestine. This in turn saves your body from absorbing starch and sugars, but also allows you to eat fewer calories and keeps you full for longer period. So, by dropping calories, being full for longer periods, and the additional benefit of reducing the quantity of cholesterol in the blood, you can easily eat less and still feel satisfied, and in turn gives you a boost in burning fat naturally.
Consuming enough fiber may help you stay lean, decrease inflammatory stress on your body and suppress the hormone that triggers the feeling of hunger.
For now, I can’t tell you exactly how much fiber you should eat, as there is no suggested dietary allowance for fiber at the moment. Yet, experienced individuals and professionals normally advised for people to take in between 10 to 13 grams of fiber for every 1000 calories consumed.
However, eating too much of fiber may increase digestive discomfort and imbalanced nutrition. You might also experience cramping, bloating, gas, and stomach discomfort.
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Peace and Blessings!
Samsu is an industrious and dedicated civil and environmental engineer. He is also a health and fitness enthusiast, a fan of tech and sport, as well as a self-confessed personal growth addict. Samsu is keen on reading about new health, fitness, and self-development trends and is constantly trying to improve himself.