Ever notice how some days you can eat and eat and STILL feel hungry? What we choose to eat has a huge impact on our bodies but also on our hunger levels. Plain and simple, most people don’t eat enough fiber even though it’s like a magical key into keeping your blood sugar levels stable and suppressing out of control cravings.
What is dietary fiber?
Fiber is a plant compound that comes in two forms, soluble and insoluble. Soluble fiber can be found in foods such as nuts, oatmeal, beans, and apples and can dissolve in water. It helps slow down the digestion process, making you feel fuller, longer while helping maintain healthy blood sugar levels. Insoluble fiber cannot dissolve in water and helps move food along through your digestive system and can be found in vegetables, roughage, and whole wheat foods. Notice how you feel the next time you eat something full of fiber compared to something sugary, you’re less likely to experience that energy drop and instead, maintain a more stable level of hunger. Munching on raw veggies and fiber filled protein bars is another great way to keep yourself satisfied during the day so you’re not famished and ready to stop for a cheeseburger on your way home.
How much fiber should I eat?
Most people aren’t getting enough fiber in their diets, we know this. White breads, sugary snacks, and other nutrient-lacking foods don’t provide the fiber needed to sustain a healthy gastrointestinal tract. While a lot of people are getting around 12-15g of fiber daily, most adults should be eating around 25-30 grams of fiber a day. Increase this suddenly and you may find yourself spending more time in the bathroom than you’d like. It’s a good idea to let your body adjust to the fiber intake gradually. You’ll notice that you feel a lot fuller for longer, and as more food and toxins are moved through your body, you’ll also notice positive improvements in your overall mental clarity and the appearance of your skin.
What are some other benefits of fiber?
Insoluble fiber has also been shown to lower the bad (LDL)cholesterol, help to prevent heart disease, and stabilize glucose levels. Along with reduced cravings due to a stronger feeling of fullness, fiber also aids in overall bowel health and regular bowel movements. Fiber is an important and healthy tool in helping you achieve weight loss and a desired health and fitness level.
By focusing on choosing whole wheat and whole grain foods over white rice and breads while eating more raw vegetables and fruits, you’ll help your body reach its health potential and feel less drained and ravenous during the day.