You’ve probably been told to include more fibre in your daily diet – but how much fibre should we eat and what are the best sources?
Home doctor experts at House Call Doctor say eating around 25 to 29 grams of fibre for women and 38 grams for men per day is optimal for a healthy diet.
A high-fibre diet can help normalise and maintain your bowel movements, decrease cholesterol levels, regulate and control blood sugars, aid in losing weight and generally helps you live longer.
Great sources of fibre:
Foods such as wholegrain products, nuts, seeds, vegetables, fruits, legumes, peas and beans are great sources of fibre.
Other refined and processed foods such as white bread, pasta, non-wholegrain cereals, pulp-free juices and canned fruits and vegetables contain lower levels of fibre.
Here are some high-fibre foods, which are both tasty and healthy:
- Pears: 5.5 grams of fibre in a medium-sized pear
- Strawberries: 3 grams of fibre per cup
- Avocado: 6.7 grams
- Apples: 4.4 grams in a medium-sized apple
- Raspberries: 8 grams per cup
- Artichoke: 10.3 grams in one whole artichoke
- Lentils: 15.6 grams per cooked cup of lentils
- Chickpeas: 12.5 grams per cooked cup of chickpeas
- Chia seeds: 34.4 grams per 100 grams
If you’re finding it difficult to incorporate enough fibre in your diet, you can:
- Start your day by eating breakfast cereals which contain five or more grams of fibre per serving. Look for cereals that include whole grains, bran or fibre. Another option is to add a few tablespoons of unprocessed wheat bran to your chosen cereal for that added boost.
- Go with the whole grain or whole wheat option when it comes to bread and pasta. Switching white with brown rice is another great alternative.
- Substitute white flour with whole-grain flour when baking. Other replacements include unprocessed wheat bran, uncooked oats or crushed bran cereal.
- Add legumes including beans, lentils and peas to your soup, green salad or even your nachos.
- Make your snacking count, by eating a wide range of low-fat popcorn, raw vegetables, fresh fruits, nuts, dried fruits ad whole-grain crackers.