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Weight Loss

Role of Dietary Fiber in Weight Loss

Dietary Fibers play a crucial role in the eternal pursue of well being of the mankind. It has already proved its significant benefits in various health domains like controlling blood sugar and blood cholesterol, treatment of constipation, an effective preventative for biventricular disease, large bowel cancer and colon cancer. Benefits of including adequate dietary fibers in our meal have recently added one more feather in the cap the Dietary Fiber, i.e., its effectiveness in weight loss and in the treatment of obesity. The World Health Organization (WHO) has recently recommended the addition of dietary fiber in diet in their report on the Global Strategy on Diet, Physical Activity and Health.

Sources of Dietary Fiber

Considering the fiber content, foods can be divided into 4 main categories:

High Fiber Food: Rice bran, Wheat bran, Corn bran, Oat bran etc.

Medium Fiber Food: Whole grains, Fruits, Beans and Nuts, Vegetables, Brown Rice, Whole wheat flower, Whole wheat pasta, Corn meal etc.

Low Fiber Food: White bread, Pasta, Cream of wheat, White rice, Oat flour, Corn Starch etc.

Foods without Fiber: Milk, Fruit Juice, Cream of vegetables, Butter, Cheese, Meat, Egg etc.

In order to increase the fiber contents into our daily diet it is indispensable to add the first 3 categories significantly. However, it is not at all wise to ignore the foods without fiber too as they have their own importance of supplying proteins, vitamins, minerals and omega 3 fatty acids in our body.

Now let us have a look on the role and importance of dietary fibers in our weight loss regimen:

Dietary fibers involve more chewing time. Our brain needs time to understand when our appetite is satisfied. So eating slow helps the brain to realize the fullness and prevent our body from over consumption.

Dietary fibers provide lesser calorie compared to the same volume of other foods. Less calorie intake is good for losing weight.

Dietary fibers stay into the stomach for longer time. Thus the sense of fullness sustains within us and we do not feel hungry easily.

Most of the portion of dietary fiber does not get digested. They add to the bulk and smoothness of bowel to remove constipation. When it passes through the digestive system it takes all the accumulated metabolic waste products and toxins out of the body. This is very important for loss of weight.

Dietary fibers produce a gel in the stomach which inspires the liver to convert cholesterol into bile. So a balance in the cholesterol amount is maintained within the body.

Despite all the above beneficial points, do not forget to increase your intake of dietary fiber step by step in small amounts. Otherwise you may suffer from indigestion problems, gas, bloating and diarrhea.

According to latest research by scientists and dieticians, the maximum daily intake of dietary fibers in an adult male body is 38 gms and for a woman it is 25 gms within the 20 to 50 age group. For children more than 2 years, intake should be amount equal to their age plus 5 gms a day. If you are more than 50 years cut your fiber intake to 30 gms per day if you are a man and 21 gms per day if woman.

So next time you want to enjoy an apple, prefer biting it unpeeled rather than drinking it by a straw. Happy chewing!

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