Has your doctor ever told you to EAT MORE FIBER? If so, join the club. Your doctor may also recommend increasing your water intake. The two go together. Nutritionists recommend that men eat 38 grams and women eat 25 grams of fiber daily. Yes, you can crunch your way to good health. The research shows that adequate fiber intake improves your digestion and reduces your risk of chronic diseases. However, increasing fiber in your diet must be done gradually.
These are the nine INCREDIBLE benefits of increasing fiber in your diet:
1. Fiber can reduce your blood sugar and risk for diabetes – Highly processed foods have generally been stripped of most of their fiber, but foods high in soluble fiber such as oats, beans, apples, barley, psyllium, carrots, and citrus fruits generally slow the absorption of sugar and help improve blood sugar levels.
2. Fiber may help prevent heart disease – Soluble fiber may help to lower total blood cholesterol levels by lowering LDL or bad cholesterol levels. In addition, studies have shown that high-fiber foods may also reduce blood pressure and inflammation. For every 7 grams of daily fiber, your risk of heart disease drops by nine percent.
3. Fiber feeds your good gut bacteria and improves your gut microbiome – The good bacteria in your gut feed off the fiber that has fermented in your G.I. tract and promote the growth of these good bacteria, which has many positive benefits on our health. Benefits include reduced gut inflammation and improvements in digestive disorders such as Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, and irritable bowel syndrome.
4. Fiber supports intestinal, liver, and gall bladder health – According to Dr. Peter Osborne, “Fiber stimulates bile production which supports intestinal, liver, and gall bladder health. This same bile also serves as a toxin binder in the intestines.”
5. Fiber helps prevent constipation and reduces toxins – Fiber actually makes your poop softer and bulkier which both aid in moving the waste from your body in a timely manner. Fats and toxins actually attach to the fiber for safe removal. Soluble fiber soaks up potentially harmful compounds and chemicals such as excess estrogen (important for estrogen-fed breast cancer patients), unhealthy fats, pesticides, and BPA before they can be absorbed into the body. And in the insoluble fiber speeds up the removal time to lessen your exposure to these compounds.
6. Fiber reduces your risk of colon and breast cancers – According to research, fiber lowers your risk for colon cancer and for breast cancer. No wonder so many doctors recommend fiber to their patients!
7. Fiber increases your chances of living longer – Researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health found that people who ate a high-fiber diet on a regular basis have a reduced risk of dying from many chronic diseases.
8. Fiber may help you to lose weight – Foods rich in fiber tend to fill us up and keep us satisfied longer and also prevent your body from absorbing some calories. Why? According to Tanya Zuckerbrot, dietician and author of The F-Factor Diet, “Fiber binds with fat and sugar molecules as they travel through your digestive tract, which reduces the calories you get.”
9. Fiber with probiotic foods has been shown in research to enhance immunotherapy in cancer patients – In an MD Anderson Study, patients who increase their fiber intake to 50 grams per day and ate 6 probiotic foods fared better in surviving chemotherapy and enhanced their immunotherapy.
Imagine being able to lower your risk for cancer, heart disease, and diabetes, while reducing toxins, improving digestion, and reducing excess weight with just one nutrient! And if you’re a cancer patient, enhancing your immunotherapy while faring better during chemotherapy! Are you now convinced you can crunch your way to longevity and good health? I am. And this is why your doctors are constantly nagging you about eating fiber! These nine INCREDIBLE benefits of adding fiber to your diet are reason enough to add many plant-based foods to your health plan. Make sure you get a variety of fiber from fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and legumes. And in our home, our daily smoothie enriched with flax seeds, low-carb fruits, and greens greatly helps us to reach our daily-recommended amount of fiber.
What benefits have you found from eating fiber? And what are your favorite foods that provide the fiber you need?
Next week, we’ll look at ways to add more fiber to your diet.
For Your Health,
Ginny Dent Brant is a speaker and writer who grew up in the halls of power in Washington, DC. She has battled cancer, ministered around the world, and served on the front lines of American culture as a counselor, educator, wellness advocate, and adjunct professor. Brant’s award-winning book, Finding True Freedom: From the White House to the World, was endorsed by Chuck Colson and featured in many TV and media interviews. Unleash Your God-Given Healing: Eight Steps to Prevent and Survive Cancer was released in May 2020 after her journey with cancer and was recently awarded the First Place Golden Scrolls Award for Memoirs, and Second Place in both Selah Awards for Memoirs and Director’s Choice Award for Nonfiction at the Blue Ridge Mountain Christian Writer’s Conference. It recently received the Christian Authors Network’s (CAN) Gold Award for Excellence in Marketing for reaching 62.5 million people with a message of cancer prevention and survival. It was written with commentary from an oncologist and was featured on CBN’s Healthy Living Show, Atlanta Live, and CTN’s Homekeepers along with over 75 media outlets. Learn more and cancer and wellness prevention blog and book information at www.ginnybrant.com.