Dietary fiber or roughage is the complex carbohydrate part of plant-based food that the human body cannot digest.
Just like 'stay hydrated’, you might hear another term 'Eat more fiber' frequently among family and friends. So, what's the importance of fiber in the human body? Is it really good or just hyped a lot? This article will give you the answers. Read on.
What is dietary fiber?
Unlike other nutrients like carbohydrates, protein, and fat, dietary fiber cannot digest inside the human body. Thus, flushes out in its original form through feces. However, passing through several digestive organs interferes witha few beneficial activities described in later paragraphs. Fiber is divided into two groups named soluble and insoluble, implying the ability to get dissolved in drinking water. The first one produces a gel-like material after dissolving in water, improving blood glucose and cholesterol-lowering potential. This type of fiber is abundantly found in peas, oats, apples, beans, carrots, psyllium, citrus fruits, and barley. On the other hand, insoluble dietary fiber increases the bulkiness of stool relieving constipation issues. This type of fiber is obtained from cauliflower, nuts, potatoes, and so on.
Dietary fiber regulates bowel movements:
Dietary fiber improves the quantity and quality of stool by providing softness and bulkiness. As a result, stool passing becomes easier reducing the risks of constipation. On the other hand, during Diarrhea, if you are passing excess fluidic stool, consume Dietary fiber to solidify it. It also reduces the risks of hemorrhoids and colorectal cancer.
Soluble fiber obtained from oats and flaxseed help lowering total cholesterol content in blood levels by removing bad cholesterol. Blood sugar gets reduced by regular consumption of soluble fibers. Thus, dieticians suggest having oats as breakfast for diabetic patients. These properties help in improving overall cardiovascular health.
Other benefits of consuming dietary fiber:
By lowering bad cholesterol and improving digestion, fiber can be effectively consumed during your weight loss program. Moreover, dietary fiber provides a feeling of fullness even after a few hours of consumption. This prevents you from excess eating, helping in weight loss. Fiber is a no-calorie item, so it cannot promote weight gain. Some new studies have confirmed that sufficient fiber is linked to increased lifespan in European countries. So, you can understand why you must consume fibers daily.
The daily requirements of dietary fiber in males and females are 30-38 grams and 21-25 grams respectively. So, focus on consuming foods that are dietary fiber enriched.