Fibre is the part of the plant that your body cannot break down. Fibre is only found in plant foods.
Types of Fibre
There are two types of fibre:
- soluble fibre
- insoluble fibre
Foods with soluble fibre absorb water. As the fibre absorbs water the foods begin to swell and thicken, becoming sticky and gel-like. Foods with soluble fibre include:
Foods with insoluble fibre do not absorb water. Insoluble fibre is found in the skins of fruit and vegetables and the bran portion of whole grains.
Why is Fibre Important?
Fibre helps your digestive tract stay healthy by keeping you regular. As fibre passes through your digestive tract it binds to fat and glucose. This reduces the amount of fat and glucose absorbed into your body.
Fibre also helps to decrease the production of cholesterol by the liver. Because you do not digest fibre it makes you feel full longer, making meals more satisfying.
How Much Total Fibre Do You Need?
Aim for 25-50 grams of fibre every day.
If you are eating less fibre than 25-50 grams per day, increase the amount of fibre in your diet slowly. Increase your water intake as you increase your fibre intake to help prevent gas and bloating. Eat some fibre at every meal so your fibre intake is spread out over the whole day.