A high fiber diet is crucial for many reasons. Good amounts of fiber are a must for good health. It keeps your digestive system working properly, helps elimination from the body, and is rich in vitamins and nutrients.
An increased amount of fiber can also help you feel fuller longer, which is very important if you are trying to lose weight.
A study conducted at the Harvard School of Medicine found that men who consumed 12 grams of fiber a day were twice as likely to develop precancerous colon changes as men whose daily fiber intake was 30 grams or higher.
Scientist are not exactly sure why fiber can help reduce the risks of colon cancer. However, it is thought that insoluble fiber adds bulk to stools, which helps speed their trip through the intestines, which leaves less time for carcinogenic changes.
Other studies have shown that healthy levels of fiber can also help prevent breast cancer, heart disease, digestive disorders, diabetes, and even obesity.
If you suffer from constipation, increasing your fiber content may help. Drinking adequate amounts of water daily will also help the fiber travel through your system.
On a side note: You should drink half your body weight in ounces of water each day for better health.
Here are a few tips to help you increase your fiber intake:
~ A simple way to start your day with an adequate amount of fiber is to have a fiber-rich breakfast cereal with fresh fruit. And…a nice glass of water.
~ Eat vegetables with as many meals as you can, preferably, RAW.
~ Limit processed carbohydrates such as white bread and pasta. And switch to whole grains instead. Most people tend to eat breads and cereals which are very low in fiber. Even some brown bread varieties only have a small amount so it is best to check labels and make sure you’re getting a natural whole grain product with sufficient fiber. You should look for breads with whole wheat and at least 3 grams of fiber PER slice.
~ Add beans to casseroles, chili, or many other foods. Beans are a great source of fiber.
~ Snack on fruit with the skin on. Fruits like berries are very high in fiber. Also, apples and pears should always be eaten with the peel still in tact.
~ Eat dried fruits such as prunes, figs, and apricots. These are easy to sprinkle on cereal or add to homemade muffins. They are an easy and healthy snack on the go as well.