Whole grain and fibrous foods are favorites for weight loss because they are good for your pocket, waist, and body. Whole foods that are packed with fiber are less expensive when compared with their fortified food counterparts. For example, a cup of cooked barley costs pennies per serving and has 6 grams of fiber.
In contrast, the leading fiber-filled granola bar can cost about 60 cents apiece and have 9 grams of fiber.
This is where your waistline and health come into play. Foods higher in fiber make you feel fuller on fewer calories. Whole foods such as beans, whole grains, and fruits and vegetables are excellent sources of healthy calories and fiber.
Fiber also works like a scrub brush to clear out natural byproducts of our body’s metabolic process and unneeded cholesterol in our blood. Fiber adds bulk to our poop, thus helping dispose of all the toxins and dead cells from the colon. For various (and more technical) reasons, eating more fiber has been shown to help decrease the chances of colon cancer. How much thread do we need to consume daily to enjoy the full benefits? It is recommended that men need 30-38 grams a day, and women need 21-25 grams a day.
An easy step to increase your fiber intake is focusing on getting 5 to 9 fruits and vegetables daily in your diet.
Flax and Chia seeds:
Great to add to any breakfast cereal. If the nutty flavor of flax is not your favorite, try chia. Organic Chia Seeds are more gelatinous, so adding them to oatmeal is a good fit. Chia can also go undetected for children as it blends well with oatmeal! Three Tbsp of chia contains 14 grams of fiber, which is more than the average American eats in a day (12 grams).
Beans and legumes:
Wash off-dry beans, place in a slow cooker, and cover with 2 inches of water or vegetable broth. Add seasonings as desired. I like the herbs from Chef Paul Prudhomme or Mrs. Dash because they are quick salt-free spice mixes. Cook on low for 8 hours and have bean soup served with/over whole grain or cornbread. A cup of black beans will add 15 grams of fiber to your day.
Eat hot or cold. This is a wheat product that has a clean nutty flavor. Eat as a side salad or alone in place of rice. Half a cup serving has 4 grams of It.
Meat is void of fiber so add some to your dish! Add cooked bulgur to your meatloaf. Try adding dry bulgur to your taco mix when adding water and seasoning. Bulgur picks up any flavor you combine it with and has a similar texture to ground beef. Add a cup of bulgur to dinner, and this will add 8 grams of it.
Pop like old-fashioned popcorn on the stovetop. I recommend only popping 3-4 Tablespoons at a time. It will “pop” and turn from light brown to white. Eat as a snack or sprinkle on your salad to add a fibrous crunch. A great sprinkle of approximately four Tbsp of popped amaranth in your salad will provide about five grams of fiber in your meal.