Is fiber good or bad? (It’s complicated)
I’ve never been much of a “bran fan.”
Muffins, cereal, those gross and gritty drinks…
Even if fiber is good for you, there must be a better way to get it than bran-stuffed “foods” that don’t taste very good.
And are questionably “good for you.”
Fiber is one of those things that causes all kinds of confusion. And when you dig into it, that’s not surprising.
Because it’s a bit of a mixed bag.
Mostly good, but not all it’s cracked up to be. With a healthy dose of mythmaking along the way.
Now the FDA recommends Americans get between 20-30 grams of fiber a day. But most people barely get half that much.
No shock there, when you consider that “fiber” really means the parts of plant foods you don’t digest.
And very few people eat enough fruits, veggies, nuts and seeds. Or if they do, most of the healthful fibers are processed right out of them.
Unquestionably, fiber can be good for you. But maybe not how you think…
One benefit is blood sugar support. By slowing your body’s breakdown of carbs and the absorption of sugar, fiber helps keep blood sugar balanced and healthy.
Or heart health. The more fiber you eat, the lower your risk of heart concerns.
And weight loss. Fiber-rich foods are bulkier, so they fill you up. This keeps you feeling less hungry and can help you eat fewer calories in the long run.
That’s why filling up your plate with healthy fruits and veggies is such a bonus. Not only do you get their nutrient value, but you also get a dose of fiber in every bite.
But unfortunately, one of the main reasons people tout fiber (and one of the biggest misconceptions among doctors) is for constipation.
Studies have shown that people who regularly struggle with staying regular can fare worse with added fiber, not better.
Adding fiber when you’re constipated can back you up even further. And add to stomach pain, bloating and a host of other unpleasantries.
One reason is that fiber is fuel for gut bacteria. This is great if your “flora” is generally healthy. But if they’re not… you’re feeding the bad bacteria.
And making your constipation, and other gut problems, potentially worse.
For constipation, you really need to get your gut back in working order. Balance the healthy bacteria and crowd out the bad.
A probiotic strain like BB-536 is one of the only ones that has been clinically shown to do this and to help reverse constipation in the process.
That’s the main reason we put it in Patriot Ultra-Biotics.
When people think of increasing their fiber, they often turn to grains. But the real focus should be foods that bring both soluble and insoluble fiber and eliminate the downside of grains entirely.
Things like berries, chia seeds, sweet potatoes, broccoli, nuts and cauliflower.
It’s just another reason why striving to eat more fruit and veggies should be your goal, regardless of your current health.
Because fiber is just one reason they’re good for you…
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