Fiberlady here to refresh your memory and taste buds about high fiber foods and a healthy high fiber diet. I will guess all of your vows of intention for your New Year’s resolution to increase your fiber intake have slipped back into old habits of white bread and donuts.
A tradition for the New Year’s table has always been blackeyed peas. They supposedly bring good luck and prosperity for the coming year. But where they really provide prosperous benefits is that they are regarded as a high fiber food. What a brilliant beginning for a healthy New Year!
I shall remind you that a few small changes in your eating habits, say about 25 to 30 grams total, could offer remarkable health benefits. High fiber diets not only help ensure healthy bowel movements, they also reduce our risk of certain cancers. Fiber helps to reduce serum cholesterol and regulate blood glucose levels.
A diet rich in high fiber foods is essential for your ultimate health. Dietary fiber is vital for prevention or treatment of diverticulitis, diabetes, colitis, irritable bowel syndrome and Crohn’s disease. Studies have shown that certain conditions such as constipation, hemorrhoids, diverticulosis and high blood pressure respond favorably to a high fiber diet.
Americans buy more laxative and stool softening agents than most other cultures. If we would just add a little more fiber to our diets, many of these products could be thrown out with the rest of the waste (sorry). Wouldn’t you rather be eating your fiber in a wholesome delicious meal or snack rather than swallowing some pale orange concoction in a glass of drinking water?
How hard is it to switch from refined foods to whole-grain foods? Fiberlady guarantees it’s as easy as changing from white bread to whole-wheat bread and from white rice to brown rice. Besides whole-grain products, there are other high fiber foods such as legumes, lentils, flaxseed and bran. Most fruits and vegetables are significantly high in fiber.
Nutritionists and scientists are recognizing dietary fiber as something more than just a nutrient on our plate. At this time in our evolution, we must be made keenly aware of the health benefits of a high fiber diet.
You can make as many resolutions as you have time to break. Maintaining your health by choosing high fiber foods should not be a casual health consideration just because you need a challenging resolution on January 1; it is a way of honoring your body every day of the year. Increase those grams of fiber, increase your longevity. But, please, don’t do it for Fiberlady, do it for yourself. Happy New Year!
Stephanie Shank (a.k.a. Fiberlady) has studied good nutrition since her days of mothering began 15 years ago which prompted her commitment to a high fiber lifestyle and the development of her informative website High Fiber Health.