12 Simple Ways to Add More Fibre to Your Diet
Fibre is an incredibly important part of your diet. It can help make you feel full, promote weight loss, lower blood sugar and cholesterol levels, prevent constipation, and protect against certain types of cancer. Fibre passes through your stomach undigested and then ends up in your colon where it feeds and nourishes the good bacteria needed for healthy digestion and so many other body functions.
The recommended daily intake (RDI) of fibre is about 25 grams for women and 38 grams for men. Unfortunately, the majority of us are not meeting those requirements. But, the good news is, increasing your fibre intake is simple! Here's a list of 12 high-fibre foods (including some that you may not think of as fibre-rich) that you can easily incorporate into your diet starting today:
Most of the carbohydrate content of avocados is fibre. A 100 g serving (about 2/3 cup) provides almost 7 g of fibre, between about 18 and 28% of the RDI. Try adding avocado to your smoothie, toast, salad or buddha bowl, or simply enjoy it on its own.
Raspberries have one of the highest fibre contents of any fruit, with about 8 g per cup. So start adding them to your yogurt bowls, smoothies, salads, and homemade jams! Tip: buy bags of frozen raspberries, which are much more affordable and just as nutritious as fresh raspberries.
Artichoke is a vegetable that you make not think of right away when you think of fibre, but it is right up there with the best of them (and surpasses many of them!) containing about 5.5 g of fibre per 100 g (about 2/3 cup). Add artichokes to dips, soups, wraps, pastas, pizzas, and salads.
Another vegetable that often doesn't get enough attention, but have you tried them roasted? Delicious! Brussels sprouts are not only very high in vitamin K, but they also contain about 3.3 g of fibre per cup. Try these Maple Bacon Brussels Sprouts, or shred them into a salad or quinoa bowl.
Edamame is often praised for its high protein content, but in addition to that, it is also rich in fibre, and can easily be added to stir-fries, buddha bowls, salads, or simply enjoyed as a side dish. Just 1/2 cup of edamame contains about 4 g of fibre.
With over 16 g of fibre per cup, oats are a great way to add more fibre to your diet. And, not only will you be adding more fibre, but you'll be upping your protein intake as well. So, next time you're reaching for your breakfast cereal, try a bowl of oatmeal, steel cut oats, or overnight oats instead. You can also add oats to your smoothie, pancakes, and baked goods.
Most beans are very high in protein, fibre, and various nutrients, making them a great addition to your diet. The fibre content in beans (kidney beans, black beans, lima beans, etc.) ranges from about 4 to 8 g per 1/2 cup. Simple ways to incorporate beans into your diet include adding them to soups, salads, Mexican dishes, and dips.
Lentils are a very affordable and nutritious way to add more fibre to your diet, with about 6.5 g of fibre per 1/2 cup cooked lentils. They are also very high in protein and numerous vitamins and minerals. Try batch cooking lentils on the weekend, making it quick and easy to add them too soups, salads, and stir-fries throughout the week. You can also buy these roasted lentils that add a nice crunch to salads, a topping to soups, or simply as a snack.
Popcorn is a whole grain very high in fibre, containing about 2.5 g per 2 cups of air-popped popcorn. But, who just eats 2 cups, right? So, go ahead, enjoy a few cups with your Friday night movie, your body will thank you! Just be careful about how much fat, extra calories, or sodium you are adding with the toppings. Try this Smoked Paprika and Rosemary Olive Oil Popcorn for something a little savoury and different, or for something sweeter, how about this Healthier Caramel Popcorn.
Chia seeds have definitely gained popularity in the natural health and nutrition community over the past few years, and for good reason, they are very nutritious, containing high amounts of protein, magnesium, calcium, phosphorous, and of course, fibre. Chia seeds are one of the best sources of fibre, with almost 10 g per 2 tbsp! Adding chia seeds to your diet is easy, toss them into your smoothie, granola, oatmeal, bake with with them, or make chia pudding.
Not only are almonds loaded with antioxidants (especially vitamin E), they are also, like most nuts, a good source of fibre. Almonds contain about 4 g of fibre per 3 tbsp. Enjoy almonds as a snack, in a salad, or as a topping on an Asian noodle dish. Almonds can also be made into almond flour, which works well in baked goods and adds extra nutrients.
And last, but definitely not least, dark chocolate! Yes, you can enjoy chocolate while getting some of your daily fibre intake at the same time. A 1-ounce piece of dark chocolate contains about 3 g of fibre. So, while you're snacking on almonds, add a piece or two of dark chocolate as well, or try these Orange and Walnut Dark Chocolate Bombs (they're amazing - I've made them a few times!). Dark chocolate is also a great source of antioxidants and numerous vitamins and minerals.