Introduction

Dietary fibre comes from plant foods. There are two types: soluble and insoluble fibre. Most fibre containing foods have a mix of both.

  • Insoluble fibre is found in the skins of vegetables and fruit and the bran portion of whole grains. Insoluble fibre helps promote regularity and a healthy digestive system.
  • Soluble fibre can be found in some vegetables, fruit, grains and legumes such as dried beans and peas. When water is added to a food the soluble fibre thickens and becomes sticky, gummy and gel like. Soluble fibre can help slow the digestion of food.

Soluble fibre helps to:

  • Lower blood cholesterol levels. Aim for at least 10 grams (g) of soluble fibre every day.
  • Control blood glucose (sugar) levels. This is helpful if you have diabetes or if you suffer from hypoglycaemia (low blood sugar)
  • Manage diarrhoea and loose stools
  • Reduce some of the symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome
  • Reduce the risk of getting intestinal ulcers
  • Have a healthier colon by increasing the amount of healthy bacteria

Tips

Grains

  • Eat at least six servings of whole grain products every day. Examples include rolled oats, barley, brown rice, quinoa and whole wheat breads, breakfast cereals and pasta.
  • Use whole grain bread, rolls, pita or bagels when making toast or sandwiches.
  • Replace at least half of the white flour with whole wheat flour in your recipes.
  • Add 15-30 mL (1-2 Tbsp) of bran, ground flax seed or a very highfibre cereal to your cereal in the morning.

Vegetables and Fruit

  • Eat at least seven servings of vegetables and fruit every day. Aim for 1-2 servings of fruit and vegetables at every meal and snack.
  • Eat the peels of your vegetables and fruits whenever possible.
  • Try having fruit as a snack or as a dessert. Pears, raspberries and blackberries are top choices for fibre. Guava and kumquat are exotic high fibre fruits worth trying.
  • Eat vegetables and fruit instead of drinking juices

Legumes

  • Add barley, beans, peas or lentils to soups, stews and casseroles. For example, add black beans to spaghetti sauce or lentils to soup.
  • Roast chickpeas or steam edemame (soybeans in a pod) for an easy snack.
  • Use legume-based dips (ex: hummus) for veggies instead of sour cream based.

Nuts and Seeds

  • Add toasted nuts, sesame seeds, sunflower or pumpkin seeds to salads and cereals.
  • Sprinkle on pasta dishes and stir-fries.
  • Grab a handful of nuts (60 mL (1/4 cup) as a quick snack

Read Food Labels

  • Compare products and pick the one with the most fibre. Be sure you are comparing the same serving sizes.
  • Check for grams of fibre. High-fibre foods have four or more grams of fibre per serving.
  • Look for ingredients such as bran, whole grain whole wheat, oatmeal or rye flour.

 

​Conclusion:

Dietary fibre comes from plant foods. There are two types: soluble and insoluble fibre.

  • Insoluble fibre helps promote regularity and a healthy digestive system.
  • Soluble fibre can help slow the digestion of food; lowers cholesterol and controls blood sugar levels.

 

How to increase fibre in your diet

  • Grains – Increase your whole grain, bran and seed consumption and decrease white flour products.
  • Vegetables and fruit – Aim for 1-2 servings whole fruit and vegetables at every meal and snack with their skins.
  • Legumes – Include barley, beans, peas or lentils in your diet
  • Nuts and seeds – Sprinkle nuts and seeds over salads and cereals or eat as a snack.
  • Read food labels – Look for products with more than 4g/100g of fibre. Choose products with bran, whole grain whole wheat, oatmeal or rye flour as ingredients.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This