Dietary fiber and health
Dietary fiber is the food that feeds the gut microbiome, as such dietary fiber and health are co-dependent and play a crucial role in our health.
Dietary fiber type and size can have different effects on the body. For example, fiber particle sizes and how they are combined at the time of digestion can affect the body in a different way.
Types of dietary fiber
Dietary fiber comes in two forms, water-soluble and insoluble to water.
Plant-based fiber is called cellulose, hemicellulose, or lignin.
Other compounds called insoluble fiber include chitin and resistant starch. However, there are more not listed here.
A summary of Soluble vs Insoluble Fiber
- Prolongs stomach emptying so sugar is absorbed slower
- Binds with fatty acids
- Lower total cholesterol and LDL
- Regulates blood sugar for people with diabetes
- Reduces risk of heart disease
- Maintains an optimal balance of good microbes
- May help prevent cancer
- Promotes regular bowel movement
- Prevents constipation
- Removes toxins quickly
Carbohydrates that are the edible portion of the plants which resists digestion and absorption in the small and large digestion.
Dietary Fiber and Health – Other benefits
There are many more benefits of digestion including:
- Promoting a sense of fullness
- Regulation of digestion
- Is low in calories and great for weight loss
Fiber is critical to health
After you do a bit of research you find that dietary fiber should be an essential nutrient and perhaps one could argue that it is is as critical to good health as vitamin C. Dietary fiber and health go hand in hand.
Fiber even acts as a stimulant for the liver and digestive processes. This increases the production of bile and research shows that it may help prevent gallbladder stones.
What happens when fiber ferments?
The beneficial microorganisms in the gut are called symbiotes. This is created when fermentable fiber is fermented, creating short-chain fatty acids (SCFA). This promotes health including:
lower colonic pH (i.e., raises the acidity level in the colon) which protects the lining from the formation of colonic polyps and increases absorption of dietary minerals that stimulate the production of T helper cells, antibodies leukocytes cytokines, and lymph mechanisms. Crucial roles in immune protection, improve barrier properties of the colonic mucosal layer
Inhibiting inflammatory and adhesion irritants contributing to immune functions. Ref
The more food you eat the more fiber you need.
The more calories you EAT THE MORE FIBER YOU NEED
The British Nutrition Foundation recommend a minimum is 18 grams a day for health.
American dietary association 20-35 grams depending on calories consumed. Men are recommended to have more as they generally eat more than women.
However, average fiber intakes for US children and adults are less than half of the recommended levels.
Dietary fiber intake provides many health benefits
“Individuals with high intakes of dietary fiber appear to be at a significantly lower risk for developing coronary heart disease, stroke, hypertension, diabetes, obesity, and certain gastrointestinal diseases. Increasing fiber intake lowers blood pressure and serum cholesterol levels.
Increased intake of soluble fiber improves glycemia and insulin sensitivity in non-diabetic and diabetic individuals. Fiber supplementation in obese individuals significantly enhances weight loss. Increased fiber intake benefits a number of gastrointestinal disorders including the following:
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease
- Duodenal ulcer
- Constipation, and hemorrhoids
Prebiotic fibers appear to enhance immune function.”
Nutrition Reviews® Vol. 67(4):188–205
Fiber intake can improve longevity
The National Institute of Health found that dietary fiber intake was significantly inversely associated with the risk of total death in both men and women. In other words in increases healthspan.
It is important to remember that dietary fiber helps to negate the negative effects of sugar. Typically you will not find high sugar processed foods containing much fiber. An increase in fiber can cause an increase in gas. Some types of fiber can block vitamin absorption
Increase your fiber intake slowly
Eating too much fiber or going from a low fiber diet to high fiber diet quickly can cause significant digestive upset so it is important to gradually increase your fiber intake.
Water is critical with increased fiber intake
When increasing fiber it is very important to increase water intake.
One needs to be careful with certain types of fibers as they absorb lots of water. Chia seeds are rich in fiber and can absorb 27 times their weight in water.
Dietary fiber feeds the good bacteria in the microbiome. The microbiome has a large impact on the immune system and hormone production system.
A number one cause of symbiotic death (death of good bacteria) is lack of dietary fiber in our diets, antibiotics, and glyphosate (round up).
So what can we do to protect ourselves and preserve our good bacteria?
The following products can help to support and protect the body from the harmful effects of glyphosate.
This is important as mentioned above glyphosate (roundup used in farming) destroys good bacteria.
Organiscleanse is a fruit and vegetable wash. It removes harmful residue of pesticides and chemicals on fruit and vegetables.
BodySheild contains fulvic acid which helps to support gut integrity and support leaky gut.
H2 Stix supports the body to neutralise free radication and helps to improve hydration. Magnesium in the H2 stix supports healthy bowel function.
Sisel’s Balance D can help to replenish the balance of good bacteria after taking antibiotics. It is also good to support general maintenance of the gut and contains 3 grams of fiber per serving.
In conclusion, it is important to get a healthy amount of dietary fiber.
And most importantly increasing the amount of dietary fiber in the diet to the recommended amounts of 25-35 grams a day. Include lots of plant-based foods, vegetables, fruits, nuts, legumes, and whole grains.
If you are unwell or have a medical condition, seek your doctor’s advice before making changes to your diet or taking supplementation. This information is not intended to treat cure or prevent any disease.