It doesn’t have to be this way. Have you considered that your intake of fibre and weight loss are related? You probably aren’t getting enough fibre, and that’s helping to sabotage your efforts.
Keep reading for how eating the right amount of fibre can help you on your weight loss journey.
Fibre and Weight Loss
Fibre is one of those things that people do not eat enough of. Only 28% of adults in Australia meet the recommended daily intake.
This is a shame because upping their fibre intake can help shed those extra pounds. This would result in a double whammy of benefits for overall health.
What Does It Do?
There are a few ways that fibre helps you lose weight. The first way is that it will help you feel full longer.
This is because it takes your body longer to break these foods down and digest them. While your body is hard at work, you feel full. When you feel full, you won’t eat.
Another way it helps you lose weight is by passing through your digestive system and not getting absorbed into the body. This means you’re eating, but the pounds aren’t getting packed on.
The other side effect is that this “sweeping through” action will clean out your system. Anything that has been hanging out will get cleaned out, resulting in some weight loss.
Types of Fibre
Fibre falls into two different types. It is either insoluble or soluble. The difference is whether or not it will dissolve in water.
These types of fibre are going to add bulk. This type is found in whole grains and vegetables.
The added bulk helps your body move food through your intestines quicker and more efficiently. We’re sure we’ve all heard the old adage that eating prunes will help you “go” more. Well, there’s some truth there, prunes are rich in insoluble fibre.
This is the type of fibre that will slow down digestion. It will attract water and turn into a gel during digestion.
Don’t assume that slowing down your digestion is a bad thing! The slow down is what helps you feel fuller longer, which means you ultimately will eat less.
Soluble fibre is found in foods like nuts, seeds, beans, and oat bran.
Your Gut Bacteria
There are about 100 trillion bacteria living in your digestive tract. Most of them can be found in your large intestine. Don’t worry, this is a good thing and the bacteria is supposed to be there.
These bacteria are many different types, and each type has a different responsibility. Some of the jobs the bacteria do are brain function, blood sugar control, immune system maintenance, and weight management.
You need to give your bacteria the nutrients they need to stay healthy and be effective. By includes soluble fibre in your diet, you are helping to make your bacteria healthy.
How Much Fibre Do You Need?
As an adult woman, you should aim to eat 25g of fibre every day. This may seem like a lot, but it really isn’t when you start considering the fibre content of foods.
What to Eat for More Fibre
So how much do you need to eat to get your daily required amount of fibre? If you ate the below list of foods, you’d meet your daily goal. You’d consume 27.5g of fibre if you ate everything
- 2 cups- mixed raw veggies
- 1 apple
- 1 orange
- 2 slices of whole grain bread
- 1/4 cup of legumes (aka beans)
- 3/4 cup whole grain cereal
Here are some other foods that are good for getting a high amount of fibre per serving.
- nuts or seeds
- fruits and veggies
- whole grains- like buckwheat, rice, or oats
- whole grain-based foods- like pasta and bread
What About a Supplement
So we’ve convinced you that you need more fibre, but trying to get all that extra fibre in your diet seems daunting. So what about a supplement instead?
The results are mixed and generally not great when it comes to depending on fibre supplements for weight loss. There is one exception.
Glucomannan is a fibre that has shown to be effective in aiding in weight loss as a supplement. Though it is important to keep in mind that depending on one thing such as a supplement is not an effective strategy for weight loss.
If you are going to use a supplement, you should combine it with other weight loss strategies. This would include an overall healthy diet plan and regular exercise.
What Lack of Fibre Does to You
If you don’t eat enough fibre, you can expect to be constipated. You may experience a variety of other digestive issues including hemorrhoids, IBS, or diverticular disease.
Start Your Weight Loss Journey
Whether you are getting started on your weight loss journey, or have been trying for a while, you need to think about fibre. If you are like the average adult, you aren’t getting enough fibre in your diet.
By increasing your fibre intake, you are aiding in your body’s digestion. This will help you feel full longer, move food through your system better, and have overall better health.
Fibre and weight loss go hand in hand but it isn’t the only thing you should focus on. Combine your increased fibre intake with a healthy meal plan and exercise regime.
Are you really hungry? Ask yourself these 5 questions before you have that next snack.