Fibre is a key to great health"we know it, but most of us probably don't spare much thought to this important aspect of our diet. In fact, most Australians don't consume enough fibre. The Heart Foundation recommends adults should consume approximately 25–30 g daily"but on average, most Australians only consume 20–25 g.
A few grams might not seem like much to fuss over, but when your diet is on track, you'll notice the difference in your digestive system, energy levels, and appetite. And once you feel the goodness in your gut, you'll gladly add this list of fibre-full options to your next grocery run!
Functions of Fibre
Your microbiome is the ecosystem of bacteria and microorganisms that keep your body systems functioning. And because your gut health is essential to your overall health, keeping your microbiome healthy and fed with beneficial, diverse types of bacteria and fibres means you can keep living the life you love. Adding a variety of high-fibre foods to your diet diversifies your microbiome, which can help keep your tummy feeling fuller, longer and help you maintain healthy energy"even during times of stress and change.
The Quick Fibre Fix
If you're looking for a quick and easy fibre fix, a fibre powder is a great option. Fibre powders are easy add-ins to meals you already enjoy like smoothies, green drinks, baked goods, and drink mixes. They can give you a boost in digestive fibre while you explore fibre-rich foods to add to your diet"or to supplement whole grains or veggies when you're in a pinch or on the go.
High-Fibre Foods to Try
When you think of high-fibre foods, you might imagine wholemeal, cardboard-textured snack bars, or prune-heavy recipes. But fibre is found in a plethora of fun foods you might not expect. Eat them raw or experiment with fun recipes to elevate your experience; there are endless ways to fall in love with fibre.
They're nature's candy. Fruits can satisfy a sweet craving, create a pretty tart, or serve as an unexpected burst of freshness in an entrée. Fruits with texture, pulp, or skin have a higher fibre content than those without. It's recommended to eat at least two servings of fruity delights a day. Add some of these bright, delightful options to your shopping list:
• Dried apricots
Veggies have heaps of essential vitamins and minerals, but their digestive fibre stands out as one of their best qualities. Grab some dark-coloured veggies the next time you're at Woolies.
• Sweet potatoes
High-fibre grains give you energy to power through your workout and busy day. Sprinkle them on top of cereals, yoghurts, and salad, or let them stand alone as side dishes for a well-rounded meal.
• Wholegrain/wholemeal breads, cereals, granola, and pastas
• Bran or psyllium husk on cereal
• Muesli on yoghurt
• Brown rice
• Rolled oats
The way you cook certain starches affects the amount of fibre you absorb from them. So turn off the stove a little early next time you're cooking pasta, rice, or potatoes, and your tummy will thank you.
• Undercooked pasta
• Under-ripe bananas
• Cooked and cooled rice and potatoes
Pro Tip: Dietary fibre absorbs water, so increase your water intake when you enjoy a high-fibre meal. Plus, extra water will keep things moving through your digestive system and benefit a multitude of body systems.
Mix It Up
Check off this essential nutrient from your grocery list with a variety of high-fibre foods you'll enjoy. Switching up your diet with a multitude of options will keep your tastebuds on their toes and provide diverse nutrients to your microbiome. Plus, trying new foods is adventurous"and who knows? You might discover a new favourite snack or delicious meal. Fibre doesn't have to be boring"it can be colourful, exciting, and totally crave-able. You're only limited by your imagination!
Warry of Wind?
Things could get a little windy when you introduce high-fibre foods into your diet, but that's totally normal and temporary. Instead of making drastic diet changes, gradually increase your fibre intake over time to avoid discomfort and digestion issues. Try adding an extra serving of fruits or veggies for a few days before you increase it again to let your system adjust.
High Fibre For the Win
Keep your digestion system running smoothly, your tummy feeling well, and feel fuller for longer with a long list of fabulous fruits, vibrant veggies, great grains, and satisfying starches in a rainbow of colours and flavours. These fibrous foods are an important element of your microbiome and gut health"and therefore your overall health. Don't feel limited to boring cardboard snacks, and shake things up with exciting, creative recipes you'll love instead. And if you have a particular palate or want to try something new, a fibre powder is always a stellar substitute to ensure you're getting all the belly-loving goodness you could want!
Bio: Living and writing in Utah, Shauntel Peterson finds stories in unexpected places, like antique stores, hiking trails, and secret gardens.