The latest UK data shows that fewer than 1 in 10 adults meet the daily recommended fibre intake of 30g. (1) Vegetables, pulses, nuts, seeds, whole fruits, and whole grains are excellent sources of fibre. So make sure you include them in every meal.
How fibre helps
Including fibre-rich foods in a meal not only makes it more satisfying (2) it also helps stabilise your glucose. (3) As your body is unable to absorb and break down fibre, it doesn’t cause a glucose spike.
A review in the British Medical Journal (BMJ) found that including fibre-rich foods was linked with improved glucose control in adults with varying health conditions. The review also showed that increasing your daily fibre intake to 35g helps improve the risk factors for heart disease, such as cholesterol levels and bodyweight. (3)
Five ways to add fibre
- Use more pulses: three heaped tablespoons of beans or chickpeas provides at least 4.5g of fibre. Add them to your salads and sauces or have them as a side dish.
- Opt for wholegrain and seeded bread. A slice of wholegrain bread with avocado provides about 4g of fibre.
- Adding a tablespoon of flax or chia seeds to your salad (or on your soup, salad, or porridge) provides about 3-5g of fibre.
- For a fibre-rich snack, a handful of nuts, seeds, and dried fruit adds about 4g. A banana or an apple will each add 2g.
- Check the nutrition labels for foods ‘high in fibre’ (6g per 100g) or a ‘source of fibre’ (3g or more per 100g)
While you’re busy adding fibre, remember to fill up on fluids too. Fibre draws water into the bowel, so drinking plenty of fluids will allow the fibre to do its job properly.