farmers_market_fruitIt seems that very often we are told about the importance of having fruits, vegetables, and whole grains in a balanced diet to obtain needed vitamin and minerals. With all the benefits of these foods, we forget that these foods also contain fiber which is an important part of our everyday diet. Fiber can help you in multiple ways. It can help you with controlling your weight by making you feel full for a longer time and it can also help you with digestion as it aids with the movement of food through your digestive system.1 Foods with higher fiber amounts may make you feel full longer as they are more satisfying.1 Consider what may make you feel full longer—drinking a glass of apple juice or eating an apple whole. A whole apple may make you full longer because of the fiber in the apple and in its skin. Also, with enough fluid, fiber can help glide food through your system more quickly, helping you with issues of constipation.1 Some types of fiber provide the benefits of lowering levels of blood sugar and blood glucose, which in turn, can lower your risk of getting diabetes or heart disease.2 Fiber is a powerhouse for providing benefits to your digestive and heart health and overall wellbeing.

Although the benefits of fiber are known, fiber is under-consumed among adults in the United States. Recommended adequate intake amounts for fiber for adults ranges from 25 to 38 grams per day, but in reality, trends have shown that people consume an average of fewer than 16 grams per day.3 Adults may not be getting all the great benefits that fiber has to offer.

To show dietary fiber amounts in perspective, 1 medium banana has 3.1 grams of fiber and 1 slice of whole-wheat bread has 1.9 grams of fiber.4 As a female, you may need to eat an orange, 1 cup of oatmeal, 2 slices of bread, 1 cup of brown rice, 1 cup of broccoli, and half a cup of black beans a day to have your daily requirement of around 25 grams of fiber.4 Generally, whole foods are recommended to get a diverse set of nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, and fibers available in foods. However, it may be challenging for some to obtain these consistently in the diet while on the go during breakfast time or while hectically running errands throughout the day.

heart_health_products_fiberA supplement that contains fiber, such as the NeoLife All Natural Fiber Food & Drink Mix can help you add fiber to your diet with ease. It is as easy as blending the mix in your favorite juice or stirring the mix simply with water. This mix can also be creatively added to foods such as pasta, baked goods, or sauces. The NeoLife All Natural Fiber Food & Drink Mix contains 6 grams of fiber in a 21 gram serving of the drink mix from 12 whole food sources such as whole oats, fruits, and vegetables. As satisfying as it is to know that this mix contains fibers from whole food sources, the exclusive Neo-Polyfibe also provides additional benefits to the mix. The Neo-Polyfibe features soy and whole oat fiber, along with acerola cherry fiber, that can help prevent your digestive system from absorbing cholesterol without making you lose any additional nutrients that some other types of fiber products often do. The NeoLife All Natural Fiber Food & Drink Mix combines a unique blend from the Neo-Polyfibe along with fibers from other whole-food sources to help you boost your fiber intake.

Having fiber in your diet can help support heart and digestive health, can help you feel full longer and aid in weight management, and can help with lowering your risk for some diseases. Whichever route you choose for your lifestyle, be sure to remember to add fiber in your diet to help fill gaps in achieving optimal balance.

natalie_masisWritten by:
Natalie Masis, PhD, RDN | Research Manager

Dr. Masis is a registered dietitian nutritionist and earned her doctorate in Nutritional Sciences from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, a Master of Science in Nutritional Sciences from Texas Tech University, and both a Bachelor of Science in Nutritional Sciences and in Food Science from Cornell University.

 

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References
1. How to add more fiber to your diet. Mayo Clinic. http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/in-depth/fiber/art-20043983. Accessed April 18, 2018.
2. Dietary Fiber. https://medlineplus.gov/dietaryfiber.html. Accessed April 17, 2018.
3. King DE, Mainous AG, Lambourne CA. Trends in Dietary Fiber Intake in the United States, 1999-2008. Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. 2012;112(5):642-648. doi:10.1016/j.jand.2012.01.019
4. How much fiber is found in common foods? Mayo Clinic. http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/in-depth/high-fiber-foods/art-20050948. Accessed April 17, 2018.