Soluble and Insoluble Fibre
High fibre foods are vitally important to your health, the average person today only gets an average of 4 to 11 grams of fibre daily. You should be aiming for 30 to 40 grams of fibre a day for optimum health. When first starting to increase fibre, do so slowly. Adding too much fibre right away can be constipating. I would recommend starting with 5 grams on day one and every second day increase by 5 grams. Don’t forget to be drinking your water, I can’t stress this enough. Without water, the fibre can solidify in the colon and cause constipation.
There are two types of fibre and they work differently.
Soluble Fibre – works by absorbing toxins (similar to a sponge), soaking up toxins as it passes. It binds with fatty acids and prolongs stomach emptying time so that sugar is released and absorbed more slowly.
Soluble – oats, beans, legumes, nuts, barley, flax seed, oranges, apples, root vegetables
Insoluble Fibre – has a cleansing effect (like a scrub brush) removing toxins and old hardened material from the intestinal wall by scraping them off as it passes by. It also works to tone the bowel and controls and balances pH(acidity) in the intestines.
Insoluble – dark leafy greens, fruit & root vegetable skins, whole wheat products, flax & many other seeds, nuts
I personally love to incorporate ground flax seeds into my daily diet as it has a great 50:50 soluble/insoluble ratio. Start by sprinkling it on your cereals, salads, yogurts, or throw it in your smoothies.
High fibre foods can help you reduce your risk of constipation, hemorrhoids, high cholesterol, high blood sugar, obesity, colon cancer, diabetes and heart disease.
I created a helpful Fibre Chart that you can download and refer to everyday to help you increase the amount of fibre in your diet.