Fill Up With Fiber

Chances are, you celebrated your last birthday with an unwelcome party crasher: an extra pound … or five. The body’s metabolism naturally slows when adults hit their 40s.

Couple that with a drop in physical activity, unchecked stress, and perhaps less-than-stellar eating habits and you’ve got the formula for creeping weight gain. [1]

While there’s no magic trick for keeping the pounds off, research has demonstrated an association between women who eat more fiber and have lower body weight. [3] It may be because fiber-rich foods like whole grains, fruit, vegetables and legumes help you fill up, making you less likely to overeat. [2,4] Because the stomach digests fiber-full foods at a slower pace, you’re also less likely to reach for unhealthy snacks between meals. [3,4] While the mechanism for this association is unclear, it makes good sense to incorporate more high fiber foods into eating occasions throughout the day.[2,3,4]

 

Here are a few simple ways to add more fiber to every meal. Aim for 21 g to 38 g each day. [4,6]

Breakfast

Choose a cereal that is a good source of fiber (3g) [5] and top it with fresh blackberries (4g of fiber per 1/2 cup). [7] Two options: Special K® Red Berries (3g of fiber per cup) [8] or Special K® Multigrain [per 9] Oats & Honey (3g of fiber per 2/3 cup). [9]

Lunch

Build a sandwich starting with a whole grain bread like rye (2g of fiber per slice). [10] Instead of mayo, try a hummus spread 2 tbsp has 8% of your daily fiber needs) [11]. And add fresh vegetable toppings, like lettuce and tomato.

 

Snack

Nosh on popcorn (3.5g of fiber per 3 cup serving) [10] or almonds (3.5g of fiber per ounce, or about 23 almonds), [10] with slices of pear (5 to 6g of fiber with skin). [10]

 

Dinner

Make a big pot of whole wheat spaghetti or other whole grain pasta (about 6g of fiber per cup) [10] and serve it with steamed broccoli (5.1g of fiber per cup). [10] Tip: Steam the broccoli just until crisp-tender; the longer vegetables cook the more nutrients they lose. [12,13]

SOURCES:

1. Medline Plus: Unintentional Weight Gain

http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/003084.htm

2. Medline Plus: Dietary Fiber

http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/002470.htm

3. Liu S, Willett WC, Manson JE, Hu FB, Rosner B, Colditz G.

Relation between changes in intakes of dietary fiber and grain products and changes in weight and development of obesity among middle-aged women.

Am J Clin Nutr. 2003 Nov;78(5):920-7

http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/78/5/920.full

4. Mayo Clinic: Dietary Fiber: Essential for a healthy diet

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/fiber/NU00033

5. Mayo Clinic: Healthy Breakfast

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/food-and-nutrition/NU00197/NSECTIONGROUP=2

6. Academy for Nutrition and Dietetics: Health Implications of Dietary Fiber

http://www.eatright.org/About/Content.aspx?id=8355

7. USDA Database: Blackberries

http://ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/foods/show/2180?fg=&man=&lfacet=&count=&max=25&qlookup=blackberries&offset=&sort=&format=Abridged&_action_show=Apply+Changes&Qv=1&Q4058=.5

8. Kellogg’s Special K Red Berries

http://www.specialk.com/cereals/red-berries/

9. Kellogg’s Special K Oats & Honey

http://www.specialk.com/cereals/oats-and-honey/

10. Mayo Clinic: Chart of High-Fiber Foods

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/high-fiber-foods/NU00582

11. Sabra Hummus Nutritional Information

http://sabra.com/products/Classic-Hummus

12. USDA database broccoli raw

http://ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/foods/show/2857?fg=&man=&lfacet=&format=&count=&max=25&offset=&sort=&qlookup=broccoli

13. USDA database broccoli cooked

http://ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/foods/show/2858?fg=&man=&lfacet=&format=&count=&max=25&offset=&sort=&qlookup=broccoli

by the Publishers of Prevention