If you spend any time looking at diets and advice on healthy eating, you’ll easily find tips and advice discussing the amount of protein, fat, and carbohydrates that you should consume each day.
But, what about fiber?
Fiber is an essential nutrient, even though it doesn’t get digested. There are two types of fiber – insoluble and soluble. Both types of fiber pass through your system without getting absorbed. Though, the soluble fiber helps slow digestion, which could potentially lower your cholesterol levels.
While lower cholesterol is a great advantage, the real reason for ensuring that you consume enough fiber is to maintain your metabolism.
You see, fiber helps you feel fuller longer. It keeps you satiated. This makes it easier to avoid over-eating and also improves digestion. So, how do you add more fiber to your diet? You could load up on cereal, but you’d end up consuming too many carbs.
There are plenty of other great sources of fiber, many of which you may not suspect.
Here is a closer look at 10 of the best sources of fiber. Each of these items is listed with the number of grams of fiber per 1 cup. For example, the first food, split peas, contains 16.3 grams of fiber per cup.
Read through this list of 10 high-fiber foods that you should include in your diet to boost your metabolism and promote weight loss.
Split peas are actually round when they are harvested. They are then split in half. This can be done by hand or by machine.
These peas are mostly used for making pea soup. But, they can also be used in a variety of meals and are popular in Indian cooking. Along with being the greatest source of fiber, it also contains a good dose of protein.
Lentils are a type of legume, but they don’t take very long to prepare. You can use them in various recipes. If you’ve never tried lentils before, they have a meaty taste and are sometimes used to form veggie burger patties.
Black beans can also be used to prepare veggie burgers. But, if you’re looking for a different way to enjoy these fiber-filled beans, you should try combining them with sweet potatoes. The two tastes go great together. As with split peas, black beans also contain a good amount of protein.
Lima beans do not have a strong flavor, which makes them versatile. You can add them to a wide variety of dishes. Studies show that consuming lima beans on a regular basis can reduce your risk of heart disease. These beans also help you stabilize your blood sugar levels.
Artichokes contain more fiber than any other veggies. Yet, they are not very popular.
Artichokes help support your digestive system. In fact, consuming artichoke leaf extract can relieve indigestion and other stomach problems. Along with offering a cure for indigestion, artichokes may help lower cholesterol levels, improve brain function, and improve the health of your liver.
Peas contain protein, fiber, and omega-3 fatty acids. They also provide vitamin K, manganese, phosphorus and folate. The standard pea is also referred to as the green pea.
In addition to the nutrients discussed, green peas also provide a beneficial phytonutrient called polyphenol. This nutrient is currently being researched to determine if it can help protect against stomach cancer.
Broccoli is perhaps one of the healthiest foods. It is a great source of fiber, along with providing vitamin C and other beneficial nutrients. The 5.1 grams of fiber listed for broccoli are for 1 cup of cooked broccoli. Keep in mind that the nutrients found in broccoli will decrease as the food is cooked.
If you decide to cook broccoli, it will lose some of its nutritional value. So, if possible, you should avoid cooking the broccoli. Steaming it will only reduce the nutritional value a moderate amount.
These leafy green vegetables are also good sources of protein, vitamin C, vitamin K, and B vitamins. Before consuming Brussels sprouts, you should cut off the buds at the stalks. Cut away the stem and remove any loose leaves. The buds are then cooked. Options include steaming, boiling, grilling, and stir-frying. Though, they taste best when roasted.
Raspberries are tasty, juicy berries that contain plenty of fiber and antioxidants. Raspberries and blackberries are the two items in this list that are not prepared cooked.
If you want to maximize the amounts of antioxidants that you get from raspberries, you should purchase them when they are fully ripe. Or, you can purchase them just before they are fully ripe and consume them at the right time.
Blackberries may not contain quite as much fiber as raspberries, but they do contain more antioxidants. If you want the best of both worlds, you should try combining the raspberries and blackberries.
If you want to keep your metabolism strong, you need the fiber. The average adult doesn’t get enough. While women need about 25 grams of fiber each day and men need about 38 grams, most adults in the US consume 15 grams per day.
These are 10 of the best sources of fiber. As you’ve probably noticed, most of these are vegetables. Though, the berries on this list are also great options. You can easily add several of these foods to your daily diet.
Fiber is often overlooked when it comes to nutrition, even though it plays a vital role – it helps maintain your metabolism and supports your digestive system. Going a single day without fiber can lead to constipation.
If you’re lacking fiber in your diet or struggling to keep your metabolism up, adding more of these foods to your diet is a good place to start.