Dietary fiber are forms of carbohydrates found in plants that cannot be digested by humans. All plants contain fiber, including fruits, vegetables, grains, and legumes. Fiber is often classified into two categories: soluble and insoluble.
Eating a high-fiber diet can also help improve your cholesterol levels, lower your risk of coronary heart disease, reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes, and lower your weight. For people with type 1 or 2 diabetes, a high-fiber diet can also help stabilize blood sugar levels.
A high-fiber diet should contain 20-35 grams of fiber a day. This is actually the amount recommended for the general adult population; however, most Americans eat only 15 grams of fiber per day.
Eating a higher fiber diet than usual can take some getting used to by your body’s digestive system. To avoid the side effects of sudden increases in dietary fiber (eg, gas, cramping, bloating, and diarrhea), increase fiber gradually and be sure to drink plenty of fluids every day.
|Food Category||Foods Recommended||Notes|
|Meats and Beans||
|Fats and Oils||
|Snacks, Sweets, and Condiments||
American Dietetic Association
Dietitians of Canada
American Dietetic Association. Nutrition Care Manual. American Dietetic Association website. Available at: http://nutritioncaremanual.org . Accessed December 9, 2009.
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12/9/2011 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed/what.php : Aune D, Chan DS, Lau R, et al. Dietary fibre, whole grains, and risk of colorectal cancer: systematic review and dose-response meta-analysis of prospective studies. BMJ. 2011;343:d6617.
Last reviewed September 2013 by Dianne Scheinberg Rishikof MS, RD, LDN
Last Updated: 9/30/2013