Dietary guidelines for Americans suggest men should be getting 33-plus grams of fiber a day. For women, it's 28-plus grams. Problem is, most of us aren't getting near that amount.
"Most people do not meet this goal," said nutritionist Deborah Enos. "The average fiber intake in the United States is 17 grams, and only 5% of people meet the adequate daily intake."
Enos says there are two types of fiber, soluble and insoluble.
"Soluble fiber is soft and it dissolves in water," said Enos. "It changes as it goes through the digestive tract where it is fermented by bacteria. As it absorbs water, it becomes gelatinous. It also binds to substances like cholesterol and sugar, helping to prevent their absorption into the blood."
Soluble fiber can help regular blood sugar levels, and protect against heart disease by lowering blood cholesterol. Enos says good sources of soluble fiber include beans, avocados, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, spinach, zucchini, apples, oranges, grapefruit, grapes, prunes, oatmeal, and whole-wheat bread.
Insoluble fiber is also know as "roughage" and does not dissolves in water.
"This fiber is the heartier part of food, such as the stalks, skins and seeds," said Enos. "It can also be fermented by bacteria in the colon."
Insoluble fiber is not broken down by the gut Enos says it promotes regular bowel movements and prevents constipation. It also speeds up the elimination of waste through the colon. Good sources of insoluble fiber include vegetables, especially dark, leafy greens, root vegetable skins, fruit skins, whole-wheats products, wheat bran, corn bran, nuts, and seeds.
Enos stopped by the Q13 studio to share with Marni Hughes several fiber hacks to help you get a little more fiber into your daily diet.
· 1 cup of frozen spinach
· ½ cup of frozen berries
· 1 avocado
· 2 cups of liquid, could be water or your fav milk
· Package of Regular Girl or you could add in Chia seeds or Flaxseeds
5 MINUTE NO BAKE FIBER BITES:
This recipe is full of fiber because of the chia seeds. Chia is known to expand when it hits fluid. The fluid it hits will be your tummy. I eat a couple of these almost every night after dinner. It keeps me so full that I never think about grabbing something naughty. This fiber hack will keep you full for up to 2 hours.
I cup of almond butter
1/4 cup dark chocolate chips
1 cup old fashioned oats
¾ cup of chia seeds
2-3 tablespoons of raw honey or maple syrup
Add all ingredients to a bowl and mix. Place in the fridge for about 15 minutes which makes them easier to roll.
Roll into a tube and slice into “cookies”
Store in the fridge for about a week.
LENTIL & CUCUMBER SALAD
Recipe by: micahmowrey.com @micahmowrey @ofgrowingthings
Lentil and Cucumber Salad with Chimichurri Dressing Serves 6 People // Total Time: 2 Hours // Active: 1 Hour
For the Lentils:
· 2 Cups Dried Lentils
· 4 Cups Water + More as needed
· 1 Cup White Wine
· 1/2 Head Garlic
· ½ Onion
· 1 Whole, Medium Carrot
· ¼ Cup Olive Oil
· To taste Salt
For the Salad: 1 Whole, Medium Carrot 1 Bunch (6) Baby Radishes 1lb Cucumbers, whole ½ Head lettuce or Baby greens as desired
For the Dressing:
· 1 Cup Picked Cilantro
· 1 Cup Picked Mint
· ½ Cup Picked Basil
· ½ Cup Picked Lemon Balm
· ½ Cup Picked Parsley
· ¼ Cup Picked Lovage
· 2 Cloves Garlic
· 4 Oz Olive Oil
· 4 Oz Red Wine Vinegar
· To taste Salt & Pepper
For the Lentils: Medium dice your carrot and onion, and peel and rough chop half the garlic. (Also peel two extra cloves to use in the dressing later). In a medium pot over medium heat, sweat the garlic, carrot, and onion with the olive oil until soft. Then add your white wine to the pot and reduce until almost dry. Now add in your lentils, mix, and add water. Bring to a simmer. As soon as the pot is at a simmer, reduce the heat to low and cover with a lid, cooking gently until the lentils are just tender, like pasta (about 20 minutes).
Remove the pot from the heat, season with salt to taste, and cool in the liquid. For the Salad: Wash all your vegetables in cold water. Then thinly slice or shave (a mandolin works great!) your carrot, cucumber, and radishes and place in a large mixing bowl. Now tear your salad greens to bite size and also add to the mixing bowl. Reserve in fridge.
For the Dressing: Once you have washing and picked the herbs, combine them in a blender with the garlic, olive oil, and vinegar. Blend until smooth, adding oil and vinegar to balance the flavor and texture. Finish the dressing by seasoning to taste with salt and pepper.
To Finish: Once the lentils are cool, drain them gently in a colander. Now combine your lentils, and dressing with the vegetables in the mixing bowl. Toss gently, tasting and adjusting your vinegar, salt, and
olive oil as needed. Serve in a large bowl or on a wide plate at home, in the backyard or on a picnic. Delicious when combined with grilled meat or fish!
Chef Instagram: @ofgrowingthings
Business Instagram: @locivore