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7 Surprising Benefits of a High-Fiber Diet You Need to Know

You’ve always heard that a high-fiber diet has amazing benefits that will totally change your life, and you will never want to go back to a diet that lacks fiber. But what are these benefits?

Indeed, a high-fiber diet can truly make you feel like a new person, and the health world is talking about how Americans don’t make enough fiber. But this is the sheer truth: fiber is crucial for us, and it makes our lives healthier.

But let’s see the basics first. Fiber is carbohydrate, but what makes it special is that during digestion it doesn’t break down completely. In plant-based foods, we can find two types of fiber: soluble and insoluble. The soluble fiber, once it dissolves in the water, creates a gel-like substance, which slows down digestion.

Insoluble fiber increases the mass of your stool and keeps it moving throughout the gastrointestinal tract. Most foods include a combination of the two; however, the proportions vary depending on what is being consumed.

So, let’s see what the benefits of a high-fiber diet are!

high-fiber diet
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1. Your gut microbiome can benefit from fiber

If you want to increase your well-being and also try to prevent disease, then you should know that a healthy gut plays a big role. And if you want to have a healthy gut, a high-fiber diet is a must.

Your gut microbiota ferments the fibers, and this will create beneficial microbial metabolites, which will be the main energy sources for your gut cells. They also help the immune system, regulate metabolism, support brain health, and suppress inflammation.

Also, the more fiber you eat, the more diverse your gut microbiota will be. Gut health has deteriorated as a result of a widespread deficit in fiber consumption during the previous few decades, while illness rates have risen.

2. Lose or manage weight

You know that losing weight can be a real struggle, and the same is true for managing weight too. This is not easy, but a high-fiber diet can help you have the body you always demand.

So, in case you are already on your weight loss journey, you can help your body shed a few more pounds by choosing a high-fiber diet. This is an amazing way to boost your metabolism and achieve your goal.

According to The Journal of Nutrition, fiber consumption is connected with increased weight reduction and a greater commitment to calorie-restricted diets.

But why is a high-fiber diet so good and effective when you are trying to lose weight? Well, it is all about the effects fiber has on your body. First of all, fiber-rich foods increase satiety, and your body also needs a while to digest them.

Another element is fiber’s influence on gut health and the development of more diversified gut bacteria. According to the journal Gut Microbes, a more diversified gut ecosystem has been associated with increased weight reduction.

3. Reduced risk of heart disease

Surprising or not, having a high-fiber diet can help your cardiovascular health. Eating more fruits and vegetables will reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and many other health-related issues.

For example, 2022 research published in BMC Public Health discovered that consuming more fiber can lower the risk of CVD, particularly among people aged 20 to 39 and 40 to 59.

The explanation behind all of this can be closely linked to the ability of fiber-rich foods to reduce chronic inflammation and lower cholesterol as well. Both of these factors are extremely common in heart disease risk.

If you want a healthy heart, choose a high-fiber diet, as it will help you have a healthier heart and cardiovascular system.

4. You will feel more full

This is one of the greatest benefits of a high-fiber diet. You will no longer be hungry all the time, as these foods are known to make you feel satiated even if you eat less food than usual.

Soluble fiber attracts the water from your gut and uses it to transform itself into a gel-like substance that is very good at slowing down your digestion.

According to the National Library of Medicine, these kinds of fibers “prolong gastric emptying time,” which implies that food takes longer to move from the stomach to the small intestine, delaying hunger.

So, if you want to have a healthier gut and also stop feeling hungry from hour to hour, adapt your diet and eat more fiber-rich foods.

5. You will have a better metabolism

As you can see, there are many benefits to a high-fiber diet, and one of them is clearly the boost this type of diet can give to your metabolism.

Metabolism is the mechanism through which the body converts food and liquids into energy. Throughout this process, calories from food and beverages combine with oxygen to produce the energy required by the body.

Studies have looked at the differences between people who have a diet based on eating refined grains and those who eat whole grains (that are rich in fiber), and the results showed that those who eat more fiber have a higher resting metabolic rate.

This might be the effect that leads to the incredible ability of fiber to help those who are trying to lose weight or maintain a healthy weight.

6. Lower type 2 diabetes risk

The Journal of Diabetes Investigation published a study in 2020 that found that a higher intake of fiber is linked to a lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

While prior research indicated that insoluble fiber was the best form of fiber for decreasing type 2 diabetes risk, this study reveals that a mix of insoluble and soluble fibers working together can do a better job at protecting you from type 2 diabetes.

It is not sure why fiber is so good at doing this, but it is believed that it has something to do with the effect of fiber on blood glucose levels. All of this creates a healthier gut microbiome and lowers inflammation, which can also help lower the risk of diabetes.

high-fiber diet
Photo by Orawan Pattarawimonchai from Shutterstock

7. Regular bowel movements

One of the most common GI complaints in the United States is constipation. Hopefully, if you suffer from this condition, a high-fiber diet can help you get regular bowel movements.

Fiber has the ability to make your stools bulkier and softer, and this speeds up the passage from your body. But when you are on your quest for more regular bowel movements, you should be aware that the type of fiber is important because different types can have different effects.

According to a 2020 review published in the Journal of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners, psyllium fiber is better than other kinds of fiber for people suffering from chronic idiopathic constipation, which is defined by hard, infrequent, or interrupted bowel movements.

Another important factor in all of this is water. Along with your high-fiber diet, you should also drink lots of water. This will help move things in your gut, and you will get more softer and regular bowel movements.

If you need a container to keep your oatmeal, this one can be a great choice: Overnight Oats Container 2-Pack – 10-Oz Glass Mason Jars w/ Spoons & Recipe Book

You should also read: 9 Finger-Licking Foods That Strengthen Bones and Joints

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