Many health and body figure conscious people struggle for years to shed unwanted pounds. Unfortunately, successful and permanent weight loss is only possible with comprehensive lifestyle changes that address eating behaviors, physical activity, and psychological factors such as goal-setting and self-esteem issues. Weight loss is becoming an unhealthy obsession dealing with body images, but in some cases can improve health and fitness. The best approach is to moderately restrict calories and increase physical activity, so that you are able to burn more calories than you take in and a healthy diet should include lots of fresh vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and beans which are all high in fiber.
One of New York Times bestselling author Brenda Watson discusses in her latest book; The Fiber35 Diet, that with little adjustment we can improve our general health, feel good, and live well. In her book she talked consuming 35 grams of fiber per day, which is in line with statistical recommendations coming from the National Institutes of Health and the Surgeon General. According to the Institute of Medicine, the recommended intake for total fiber for adults 50 years and younger is set at 38 grams for men and 25 grams for women, while for men and women over 50 it is 30 and 21 grams per day, respectively, due to decreased food consumption. A high-fiber diet offers many health benefits and consuming adequate amount in the diet is important.
Fiber is only found in plants, and functions like a skeleton to help maintain their shape and structure. Fiber is often classified into two categories: those that don’t dissolve in water (insoluble fiber) and those that do (soluble fiber). Insoluble fiber is the type of fiber promotes the movement of material through your digestive system and increases stool bulk, so it can be of benefit to those who struggle with constipation or irregular stools. Whole-wheat flour, wheat bran, nuts and many vegetables are good sources of insoluble fiber. The second type is called Soluble fiber. This type of fiber dissolves in water to form a gel-like material. It can help lower blood cholesterol and glucose levels. You can find generous quantities of soluble fiber in oats, peas, beans, apples, citrus fruits, carrots, barley and psyllium.
The National Cancer Institute recommends a dietary intake of 25 to 35 grams of fiber a day for adults, but most people consume only about half that amount which is why diseases such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, colorectal cancer, obesity is on the rise.
Dietary fiber, also known as roughage or bulk, includes all parts of plant foods that your body can’t digest or absorb. Unlike other food components such as fats, proteins or carbohydrates, which your body breaks down and absorbs , fiber isn’t digested by your body. Therefore, it passes virtually unchanged through your stomach and small intestine and into your colon. Choosing foods that are high in fiber is a great way to maintain your weight and keep your digestive system healthy. Fiber helps to fill you up and keeps you satisfied longer after each meal, so losing weight is much easier – plus many high-fiber foods are also low in calories.
In Watson’s book she shares that those foods that are rich in fiber make your body eradicate those unwanted calories in your bowel naturally she call it the ” fiber flush effect”. She also confer that for every gram of fiber that you eat it sheds away seven calories. An excellent way towards achieving flat belly is eating 35 grams of fiber regularly which can flush away as much 245 calories a day. Furthermore, researchers at the Department of Human Nutrition and Food Science at the University of Kiel in Germany perform studies which prove this effect.
Fiber is undoubtedly one of the most talked about nutrients for health promotion and disease prevention. In fact, fiber is converted in the lower bowel by the action of friendly bacteria into health giving substances that can lower blood cholesterol and even potentially suppress appetite.