Are You Getting Enough Fiber from Your Diet?

Are You Getting Enough Fiber from Your Diet?

Research is clear that eating a plant-based diet with lots of healthy fruits and vegetables supports optimal health on many levels.1 But why are plant foods so powerful? They contain fiber!

Health Facts on Fiber

Grains, vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts, and seeds are all great sources of different types of fiber that can help support overall wellness. In particular, research demonstrates that dietary fiber can help support healthy weight, insulin sensitivity, balanced cholesterol, heart function, immunity, and even mental health.2 Fiber is also great for your gut.

Fiber and Gut Health

Fiber is especially important because it helps support digestion and gut health. The beneficial bacteria in the gut serve many critical purposes so we need to keep those bacteria properly nourished. 

When we eat fiber foods, compounds in those foods are fermented in the gut where they produce beneficial short-chain fatty acids to create a more diverse and healthier microbiome.3 These dietary fibers are known as prebiotics, which are the food for probiotics, the good bacteria in the gut.

Apple Pectin Fiber

One of the richest sources of fiber is apples, specifically the pectins in the pulp of the apples. Apple pectin fiber is a great source of soluble fiber and prebiotics. Research shows that pectins support gut health and in particular the gastrointestinal lining and intestinal immune barrier.4

Research also shows that taking pectin fiber as a dietary supplement helps support bowel function.5,6

How Much Fiber is Needed?

The Institute of Medicine recommends the following daily fiber intake:7

  Age (Years) Fiber Amount (grams/day)
Children 1-3 19
  4-8 25
Female 9-13 26
  14-18 26
  19-50 25
  50+ 21
Male 9-13 31
  14-18 38
  19-50 38
  50+ 30

For example, to get 30 grams of fiber daily, you’d have to eat a cup of oatmeal (5 g), two slices of whole-wheat bread (2 g), a cup of broccoli (5 g), one medium potato with the skin (4 g), a medium apple with the skin (4.5 g), a cup of raspberries (8 g), and one medium raw carrot (1.5). that may not be easy for many people.

Get Your Fill of Fiber

If you feel you are not getting the recommended level of fiber in your daily diet, consider taking an apple pectin fiber supplement, like KAL’s Apple Pectin Vegcaps.

If the amount of apple pectin is 600 mg per capsule, you will take two capsules daily with at least eight ounces of water or other liquid. Fat-soluble vitamins, essential fatty acids, and medications should be taken two hours before or after ingesting apple pectin fiber.

For more tips on nutrition, mindful wellness practices, and helping your family feel their best, follow us on Facebook @kalvits and Instagram at @kalvitamins!  

References

  1.  Clem J, Barthel B. A Look at Plant-Based Diets. Mo Med. 2021;118(3):233-238. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8210981/?report=reader
  2.  Barber TM, Kabisch S, Pfeiffer AFH, Weickert MO. The Health Benefits of Dietary Fibre. Nutrients. 2020;12(10):3209. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7589116/?report=reader
  3.  Cronin P, Joyce SA, O'Toole PW, O'Connor EM. Dietary Fibre Modulates the Gut Microbiota. Nutrients. 2021;13(5):1655. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8153313/?report=reader
  4.  Beukema M, Faas MM, de Vos P. The effects of different dietary fiber pectin structures on the gastrointestinal immune barrier: impact via gut microbiota and direct effects on immune cells. Experimental & Molecular Medicine. 2020;52:1364-1376. https://www.nature.com/articles/s12276-020-0449-2
  5.  Xu L, Yu W, Jiang J, Li N. Clinical benefits after soluble dietary fiber supplementation: a randomized clinical trial in adults with slow-transit constipation. Zhonghua Yi Xue Za Zhi. 2014;94(48):3813-6. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25623312/
  6.  Xu L, Yu W, Jiang J, et al. Efficacy of pectin in the treatment of diarrhea predominant irritable bowel syndrome. Zhonghua Wei Change Wai Ke Za Zhi. 2015;18(3):267-71. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25809332/
  7.  Quagliani D, Felt-Gunderson P. Closing America's Fiber Intake Gap: Communication Strategies From a Food and Fiber Summit. Am J Lifestyle Med. 2016;11(1):80-85. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6124841/?report=reader
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