Fiber is the indigestible portion of plant foods, most of which passes through our system unchanged. Since we lack the enzymes to digest fiber, we can't absorb any calories from it.
Nutrition professionals predict that American adults get only about half of the 20-35 grams of fiber daily that we need for good health. That's why it's a good idea to adopt a healthy daily habit of including more fiber in your diet.
Eating foods rich in fiber and essential minerals should be a daily, healthy habit for good digestive health. Food groups of fruits, vegetables and whole grains serve up plenty of fiber, so eat them in abundance. And getting in a routine of taking an everyday, like-clockwork natural dose of nutrients can be a very healthy habit. You can meet your daily fiber needs by eating two cups of fruit and two and a half cups of vegetables each day. And drink plenty of water to help fiber do its job. Here are some easy ways to add fiber, and essential minerals and vitamins, to your day:
- Look for fruits that contribute fiber as ingredients in a meal, as well as snacks:
- Prunes (4 grams per 2 oz. serving),
- Apples (1.5 grams per 2 oz. serving),
- Raisins (2 grams per 2 oz. serving),
- Pears (2 grams per 2 oz. serving).
- Read the label when buying cereal and choose those that provide at least 2 grams of fiber per serving.
- Try the rich, nutty flavor of short-grain brown rice (4 grams of fiber per cup).
- Add vegetables to meals whenever you can: in soups, on pizza, in sandwiches, tossed with pasta.
- Add a glass of juice to your daily morning routine. Now there's PlumSmart®, the refreshing all-natural plum juice that works just like prune juice (hey, it's from the same fruit!) but tastes GREAT! An 8oz glass of PlumSmart has 3 grams of fiber per serving.