You may have heard that eating more fiber is good for health. But what is fiber and why is it good?
Fiber is present in many vegetables, fruits, legumes and whole grains. It is a component of food that is good for relieving constipation. Other than this, there are many health benefits of including more fiber in the diet and it is also not hard to select tasty foods which are rich in fiber. Fiber is not digested by the body. Instead it is passed intact through the stomach to the small intestine and colon and out of the body. Fiber can be classified as soluble and insoluble. Soluble fiber is present in apples, carrots, citrus fruits, peas, oats and beans. It dissolves in water. On the other hand, insoluble fiber aids in digestion and is commonly found in potatoes, cauliflower, green beans, wheat bran, whole wheat flour and nuts. Some of the important health benefits of fiber are mentioned below.
1. Promotes heart health
A number of studies have suggested that eating more fiber can promote heart health and prevent diseases related to the heart.
2. Prevents cancer
Including foods high in fiber in the diet can provide protection against many different types of cancers including colon, uterine, ovarian and breast cancer.
3. Lowers cholesterol levels
During the digestion process, fiber and cholesterol bind together so cholesterol is not absorbed in the body which prevents clogging of arteries. In addition, fiber also lowers LDL’s (bad cholesterol) in the blood.
4. Promotes skin health
Fiber can also help get rid of fungus and yeast from the body without them getting excreted through the skin which can trigger rashes and acne. It clears toxins from the body and maintains healthy blood flow which gives the skin a natural healthy glow.
5. Prevents stroke
Increasing your intake of fiber can help reduce the risk of stroke. According to a number of studies, including 7 grams more fiber in your diet per day can decrease the risk by at least 7 percent.
6. Weight management
Losing weight and getting a fabulously toned body is a dream for many people and this dream can be achieved by eating more fiber. Fiber helps in digestion and keeps you feeling full for longer. When you eat less, you automatically consume fewer calories which make getting rid of the extra kilos easy.
7. Prevents kidney stones
Fiber does not allow huge amounts of insulin to enter the bloodstream when food is digested. This reduces the risk of kidney and gall stones.
8. Provides relief from irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
Fiber regulates bowel movement which can help you get relief from IBS.
9. Maintains blood sugar levels
When you consume foods which are good sources of soluble fiber, your body breaks down carbs slowly which promote slow and steady absorption of sugar. This helps maintain sugar levels in the body.
10. Helps with diabetes
Vegetables and fruits which contain fiber can regular blood sugar levels. If you are suffering from diabetes, including lots of fiber in your diet can help you minimize the intake of insulin or your recommended medication dosage. However, if you don’t suffer from diabetes, fiber can help reduce the risk of this condition.