There are several options for foods rich in fiber, including whole grains , some fruits and even grains such as beans .
Fiber serves many things, such as: promoting healthy weight loss, improving bowel function, protecting the heart and even boosting immunity.
Check out the list of 10 food sources of dietary fiber and learn about the different types and how each one works in the body!
10 high fiber foods
One of the richest foods in fiber is psyllium , which is nothing more than the husk and seeds of some plants of the Plantago genus .
Each tablespoon with 10 grams of it has almost 8 grams of dietary fiber.
Most of them are formed by mucilage and polysaccharides, such as pectin, which make the flour acquire a gelatinous consistency when it comes into contact with water. ( 1 )
Pulses such as beans , peas , soybeans and chickpeas are also excellent dietary sources of fiber. ( 2 )
The main types of fiber found in this food group are resistant starch and maltodextrin, in addition to hemicellulose, which is a type of polysaccharide. ( 4 )
3. Whole grains
Whole grains, such as oats , rice , rye and even wheat , are also examples of foods rich in dietary fiber, especially celluloses, hemicelluloses and lignin, which are found in greater amounts in oat bran . ( 2 )
The flours also contain fibers that are more resistant to contact with water, such as the aforementioned starch and maltodextrin, as well as some types of cell wall proteins, phenolic compounds and phytates. ( 4 )
4. Leafy vegetables
Leafy vegetables such as kale , arugula and spinach are natural sources of fiber. In them are found in greater quantities pectins and celluloses, but also phenolic compounds and antinutrients of the oxalate and phytate types. ( 2 )
The cabbage , for example, shows 3.12 grams of fiber, while the rocket 2.43 geo 2.83 g spinach, when taking into consideration each portion of 100 grams of vegetable, in amounts of more than 10% of recommended fiber for daily consumption. ( 3 )
5. Sweet Potato
The sweet potato has about 2.7 grams of fiber per serving, which are divided between the groups of starches and pectins. This characteristic makes this variety another excellent food to ensure the daily intake of fiber. ( 2 , 3 )
Another great source of dietary fiber is cruciferous vegetables , more specifically broccoli, which delivers almost 7% of the necessary daily dose of this nutrient for an adult.
Its fibers, of the pectin, cellulose and phytate types, are equivalent to a little more than 2.5 g per ingested portion. ( 5 )
The pumpkin or pumpkin as it is called in some regions of the country, is another option from the list of best foods rich in fiber, with at least 2.8 grams of this nutrient per serving of cooked vegetable. ( 3 )
The Flaxseed is a small seed, but that gained status of food functional because of its many health benefits, among which is the large amount of fiber you have.
Each 100 gram serving of seed contains, on average, 40 g of dietary fiber, which is almost double the daily recommendation for consumption. ( 6 )
The chia fibers are divided into gums and mucilages, in addition to cellulose and lignin, making it a very complete option. ( 4 )
Lastly, green corn is a food that must be placed in the diet to ensure the daily intake of dietary fiber. Each portion of cooked corn has just over 4 grams of fiber, especially starches and celluloses. ( 3 )
What is dietary fiber?
Dietary or dietary fibers are basically parts of foods that have a certain resistance to digestive enzymes.
They are divided into two groups, which are soluble and insoluble fiber, according to their ability to absorb water and ferment during the digestion process. ( 7 )
Soluble fibers are those with the ability to absorb and dissolve when coming into contact with water. Because of this, they turn into a kind of gel still in the stomach.
This gel is very useful for health, as it serves to delay gastric emptying, reducing hunger and is still able to ferment when it reaches the large intestine.
This characteristic makes them also called viscous or fermentable fibers.
This group includes pectin, gums and mucilages, inulin and some types of hemicellulose. ( 4 )
Fibers of the insoluble type are the most resistant and, therefore, are not diluted in water. This makes them have limited fermentation, but helps to increase the size of the fecal cake and facilitate evacuation.
These groups include lignin, cellulose, the rest of hemicelluloses and resistant starches. ( 4 )
Fiber rich fruits
Fruits are another excellent source of fiber and should always be on the menu to maintain the recommended daily intake.
We separated 11 fruits very rich in this nutrient and the amount of it in each 100 gram serving, with information from TBCA, check it out! ( 3 )
- Apple with skin (2.07 g)
- Banana (1.7 g in the dwarf banana and 1.53 in the plantain)
- Pineapple (1.12 g in the pulp. The juice made with the skin is 85 g) ( 8 )
- Avocado (4.03 g)
- Unpeeled guava (5.78 g)
- Plum (2.43 in natura and 7.10 in the dry version)
- Dry Damascus (7.3 g)
- Papaya (1.81 g)
- Date (9.7 g)
- Grapes (0.93 g in nature and 3.7 na raisins)
- Persimmon (4.56 g).
Fiber is very important for maintaining your health.
In particular because they directly influence the functioning of various aspects of the human body as they are resistant to digestion, being recommended the consumption of at least 25 grams of them daily .
Check out below 5 mechanisms that demonstrate the importance of dietary fiber!
1. Maintenance of intestinal health
Fiber is well known to help with bowel function, preventing from constipation to diarrhea and even intestinal infections .
Soluble fiber ferments in the large intestine. Because of this, they increase the proliferation of bacteria that are part of the intestinal flora, which are friendly and protect the body.
Insoluble fibers increase the size of the stool and thus promote peristaltic movements, making you go to the bathroom more often, preventing terrible constipation .
In fact, fibers are so essential that they can help reduce the symptoms of inflammatory bowel disease, improve evacuation and alleviate discomfort. ( 7 )
2. Weight reduction
Eating high fiber foods can also help you lose those unwanted pounds and the reasons are simple. Firstly, because they increase satiety, as they take up a lot of space, thus decreasing the amount of food eaten per meal.
The second reason is that the gel formed by the soluble fibers takes a long time to pass from the stomach to the small intestine, which causes a delay in gastric emptying. As a result, it takes you longer to feel hungry again.
Finally, the gelatinous compound slows down the passage of food through the small intestine and thus ends up decreasing the rate of absorption of some nutrients, thus reducing caloric intake. ( 4 )
3. Diabetes control
The consumption of dietary fiber is also important to promote control and prevent diabetes, and this is because the soluble fiber reduces the absorption of some macronutrients, such as carbohydrates, which are metabolized into sugars.
What’s more, they have been shown to have the ability to increase the body’s sensitivity to insulin , meaning that the body does not need high doses to reduce circulating glucose in the blood. ( 7 )
4. Decrease in the risk of cardiovascular problems
Anyone who eats a high-fiber diet has a lower risk of developing cardiovascular problems, did you know that?
This reduction occurs because of the way in which these compounds work in the body, which reduce risk factors for this type of disease, such as hypertension, high cholesterol and accumulation of abdominal fat. ( 7 )
5. Strengthening the immune system
Did you know that the daily consumption of foods rich in fiber even influences your immune system?
Yeah, and that’s because the intestine, where they exert greater influence, are super important for the maintenance of immunity, keeping a good part of the body’s defense cells .
What exactly happens is that, because they are prebiotics (helping with intestinal flora), fibers increase the amount of bacteria that help the body fight disease.
Some evidence suggests that consuming good amounts of this nutrient can help lower the risk of developing not only intestinal infections, but also respiratory and even skin problems. ( 7 )