As the holiday season comes to an end, many of us are contemplating the best way to shed the unwanted pounds we may have accumulated. Whether party hors d’oeuvres, rich and overly generous dinner portions, and/or simply staying closeted and snacking in our homes during the pandemic, our eyes and subsequent cravings may have gotten the best of our judgment. No worries – fiber and weight loss are best friends!
Whatever way extra weight found its way onto your body, I’m here today to share info to help you turn the situation around. Increasing your fiber intake doesn’t require a complete revamp of your current eating habits. Instead, it will help to gently engineer a way to rebalance your gut. As a terrific side benefit, you will feel much on the inside and (drumroll!) also shed pounds in a lasting way. Your ace in the hole for an easy transition is fiber.
Fiber and weight loss. Fiber helps overcome cravings.
Cravings are the first obstacle we all face when we decide to realign our eating habits. It seems like for months we’ve just grabbed something salty, maybe sweet, maybe just carbs, carbs, carbs, when the feeling rears up. Actually, your bad gut bacteria are actually talking to you, telling you to eat these things (not kidding – check this out).
One of the very best ways to keep away those pesky cravings is by eating more fiber every day. Honestly, it’s that simple! Fiber does amazing things in your body. Re: cravings, it triggers the release of an anti-hunger hormone called cholecystokinin (CCK). CCK is produced in the small intestine and plays an important role in bile production and digestive enzyme secretion. It also helps with satiety, sending a message to your brain that you’re full. Research has shown that eating a high fiber meal will help you release as much as twice the CCK as when you eat a low fiber meal.
Bottom line, the more fiber you eat with each meal, the faster you’ll feel full, and the less likely you’ll overeat!
Tip – salad first! Fruits and veggies are your best food source of Fiber!
Fiber and weight loss. Fiber helps you feel full quickly
Another way fiber makes you feel full is simply by taking up a lot of space in your stomach when you eat it. You’ll get a lot of volume for very few calories. Feel full for less calories. Winner!
Many of us feel as though we’re getting plenty of fiber. Please note, a salad and a side of veggies with dinner just won’t cut it. Just for fun, take a look at what a healthy fiber-filled day might look like.
- Acorn Squash
- Red Beans
- 3 ounces
- 1 medium
- 1 medium
- 1/2 cup, cooked
- 1 medium
- 1 cup
- 1/4 cup
- 9 grams
- 7 grams
- 5 grams
- 4.5 grams
- 4 grams
- 4 grams
- 4 grams
Tip – strive for 35 grams of Fiber daily.
Fiber and weight loss. Fiber flush effect = absorb fewer calories from the food you eat!
Yes, you read that right. When you increase your intake of fiber, you literally absorb less calories when you eat. The technical term for this is “fecal energy extraction”. Doesn’t fiber flush effect sound much more appealing? Bottom line, comparing research from various labs, it is reasonable to assume that, if you eat a high-fiber diet that consists of 35 grams of fiber daily, you will eliminate approximately 7 calories for every gram of fiber.
Fiber and weight loss. Fiber slows down the conversion of carbs into sugar.
High-fiber foods help normalize blood glucose levels by slowing down the time it takes food to leave the stomach and by delaying the absorption of glucose. This allows glucose to be burned more efficiently instead of quickly being stored as fat. That said, fiber also combats insulin resistance, the precursor to diabetes.
Fiber gets you moving!
A well-formed stool passes more easily through the digestive tract, relieving occasional constipation. You may be shocked to learn that technically you are constipated if you don’t have at least one bowel movement per day. Also, if the total of your BMs each day doesn’t add up to 1.5 feet, guess what, you are constipated. Truth is, overall we are a constipated society as a result of our low-fiber eating habits and lifestyle.
A successful elimination daily not only has you feeling happier, it also helps protect your intestinal lining by eliminating irritating toxins faster and more efficiently.
Bonus – Fiber also decreases uncomfortable bloating and gas.
Not all fibers are created alike!
Did you realize that there are actually two types of fiber? They are soluble and insoluble. Recommended ratio: 75% Insoluble to 25% Soluble fiber. It’s best to focus on insoluble fiber, since we need more of that type. (most fibrous foods have a mixture of both).
Are you feeling motivated but having difficulty imagining eating 35 grams of fiber daily? No worries. Achieving the recommended 20-35 grams of fiber each day can be very hard to get through food alone, so a quality high fiber supplement in the morning and at night along with a glass of water can help you reach your daily fiber goals. Fiber can also be taken before meals to reduce hunger (remember our salad tip?).
Vital Planet has formulated Vital Fiber, which offers 13 grams of fiber per serving. Vital Fiber also offers the appropriate ratio of insoluble to soluble fiber, without adding in potentially irritating ingredients like psyllium. Make sure you get your fiber, enjoy the ease.