Adding fiber to your diet is essential for both your digestive health and heart health. It is suggested that you eat between 20 and 30 grams of fiber each day for optimal health. If your usual fiber intake is low, finding ways of adding fiber to your daily menu can seem daunting, but it's not as hard as it may seem. Check out these easy and tasty ways you can add fiber to your daily diet.
1. Start your day with fiber. Because fiber is found in carbohydrates, and because many popular breakfast items are carbohydrate based, make sure your breakfast choice is an optimal choice of fiber. Many hot and cold breakfast cereals contain high fiber counts, which will help you get a running start on your daily fiber goal.
2. Up your intake of fresh fruit. Apples are a popular high fiber choice, but don't stop there. Oranges, blueberries, and dark cherries also plenty of fiber. You can toss a few blueberries into oatmeal in the mornings, or bake pears for dessert. These are easy ways of adding fiber without making a huge sacrifice.
3. Compare labels. Your usual brand of pasta sauce may be tasty, but another may contain 1,2, or even 3 more grams of fiber per serving. The next time you go grocery shopping, do some comparison shopping for the staples you buy and consider a version with higher fiber. 1 gram here or there may not seem like much, but they will add up over the course of several meals.
You can also take this opportunity to explore other fiber enriched foods. Manufacturers have added fiber to everything you can imagine. From yogurt, to pasta, to frozen desserts, you can find lots of extra fiber in the types of foods you like to eat on a regular basis.
4. Add vegetables to favorite recipes. Look for opportunities to boost fiber by adding fresh vegetables to foods you cook. Try adding chopped tomatoes to spaghetti sauce, diced carrots into Sloppy Joes, or bell peppers into your favorite meat loaf.
5. Eat more beans. Beans are an excellent choice for adding fiber to your meals. You can increase your intake of side sides like baked beans and bean salad or add beans as an extra ingredient to casseroles and main dishes. You can also serve them as a main entrée by making split pea or black bean soup.
6. Use supplements. If you still need ways of adding fiber to your meals, try some of the fiber supplements made by companies like Metamucil. Today's fiber supplements are much tastier than those in times past. You can buy chewable fiber tablets, cookie-like wafers, or even fiber enriched drink mixes. If you enjoy baking, try mixing flavorless fiber powder into your favorite cookie, brownie, and cake batters.