Fiber is the part of food that is not absorbed by the body. There are several reasons why fiber can be considered the dieter’s friend.
For instance, while high-energy foods are absorbed quickly into the body, to be used for energyicon or stored away as fat, fiber from a high-fiber meal remains in the digestive system longer. It gives a feeling of fullness without extra calories. In addition, foods containing high amounts of fiber take longer to chew and eat. This slower eating time gives the body a chance to register its fullness and turn off the hunger signal before overeating has taken place.
Finally, high-fiber foods are usually low-fat, low-calorie foods. Dieters can eat much larger quantities of these foods without going beyond their calorie limits, as long as they don’t overdo it. Remember that eating even low-calorie foods in excess will cause weight gain.
A plate of attractively cut raw vegetables with a low fat dip, such as salsa or seasoned with spices and herbs, makes a good appetizer. It takes the edge off of ones hunger, so the meal can be enjoyed in a leisurely and moderate fashion.
Increase the fiber in your diet gradually to build tolerance and avoid cramps and bloating. Since fiber absorbs water, be sure to drink plenty of water and other caffeine-free fluids to compensate. Extremely high amounts of fiber in the diet can deplete the body of certain vitamins and minerals.
Successful weight loss involves a high-fiber meal plan. Consult your healthcare provider when making major changes in your diet.
High-Fiber Foods Include:
- Fruits and vegetables
- Grains such as brown rice, bulgur wheat, amaranth and quinoa
- Whole grain breads, pastas and cereals
- Potatoes with their skins
- Air-popped popcorn
- Beans and legumes such as lentils and split peas