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The Health Benefits of Fiber

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According to health.com eating a fiber rich diet, especially the kind of fiber found in whole grains, may reduce the risk of dying at an early age.

 

Why Whole Grain fiber?


According to Yikyung Park, a researcher for the National Cancer Institutes’s nutritional branch said, “findings suggest that the antioxidants and other nutrients found in whole grains- not just the fiber- may be partly responsible for promoting health and long life.”

 

Did You Know?


Only plants produce fiber. No matter how chewy or “tough” animal products may be, they do not contain fiber.

 

Facts About Fiber

  • Americans only consume about 10% of the amount of fiber that they should.
  • A good diet should contain nearly 25 to 30 grams of fiber per day.
  • Bran has the highest fiber content, about 25%-45%.
  • There are two different types of fiber;
    1. Insoluble fiber- cannot be dissolved into water. Works as a good laxative.
    2. Soluble fiber- does dissolve in water. Can have beneficial effects, such as; lowering blood cholesterol and blood sugar levels.


The Health Preventatives of Eating Fiber


According to eHealthMD.com

  • Avoiding and relieving constipation
    • Increasing fiber in your diet will start to relieve constipation within hours or days.
    • Eating more fiber will help make stools easier to pass, keeping the contents of the intestines moving.
    • Easier stool passage will make for less straining and can help relieve hemorrhoids.
  • Heart health
    • May lower the risk of death due to; heart attack and heart disease
  • Reduce the risk of respiratory diseases, such as;
    • Pneumonia
    • Chronic Bronchitis
    • Infectious diseases
  • Cancer
  • Diabetes
  • Gallstones and kidney stones

 

Fiber and Weight Control

  • Choose foods naturally high in fiber.
  • Avoid foods that have had the fiber removed (fruit juices).
  • Choose high fiber foods that satisfy hunger without providing added calories.

 

Fiber Rich Foods

  • All-natural cereals
  • Whole-grain breads
  • Beans
  • Fruits
  • Vegetables
  • Nuts


Interesting Facts


A study that was conducted by the National Cancer Institute found;

  • Increased fiber consumption, may reduce the risk of death due to cancer, but ONLY in men.
  • Consuming fiber from whole grains was most strongly linked to a lower risk of dying.
  • Fiber from vegetables and beans had minimal impact on death risk.
  • Fiber in fruit seemed to provide NO protection at all.


Sources:

http://www.ehealthmd.com/library/fiber/fib_benefits.html

http://news.health.com/2011/02/14/fiber-longer-life/

http://www.ehealthmd.com/library/fiber/FIB_whatis.html

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