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WHAT IS DIETARY FIBRE?
Dietary fibre is a type of carbohydrate that cannot be digested by our body. It is found in edible plant foods such as cereals, fruits, vegetables, dried peas, nuts, lentils and grains. Fibre is grouped by its physical properties and is called soluble, insoluble. All types of fibre have important roles to play.
WHERE ARE THE DIFFERENT TYPES OF FIBRE FOUND?
Resistant Starch develops during the heating and then cooling of some foods such as potato and rice. Foods high in resistant starch often have a low glycemic index.
WHAT DOES FIBRE DO?
Benefits of Fibre in the Diet
Bengal gram, whole
Green gram, whole
Lotus stem, dry
Identify packaged foods that are sources of fibre, check the per serve column of the nutrition information panel. The industry code of practice utilizes the following Codex guidelines.
3 g per 100g or 1.5 g per 100 Kcal or 10 % of daily reference value per serving = Source of fibre
6g per 100g or 3g per 100 Kcal or 20 % of daily reference value per serving = High in fibre
HOW MUCH DO YOU NEED AND IS IT POSSIBLE TO HAVE TOO MUCH?
Based on energy intake, a level of about 40g of fiber/2000 Kcal in a diet is considered reasonably safe by Indian council f Medical Research.Intakes in excess of 60 g of fibre over a day can reduce the absorption of nutrients and may cause irritation in the bowel apart from diarrhoea.
It has been suggested that achieving a fibre intake higher than the average can help reduce the risk of some diseases. Introducing too much fibre too quickly or eating too much can cause constipation or diarrhoea in some people. It is important to introduce fibre into your diet gradually and ensure that you drink adequate amounts of fluid.
Remember to drink plenty of water as well to prevent constipation.
Examples of high fibre foods include all bran cereals, lentils, flax seed, chick peas, dried figs, kidney beans, green peas, spinach and pears.
Examples of foods that contain 2-4 grams of fibre per serving include soybeans, carrots, wheat germ, apples, popcorn, baked potatoes, almonds, strawberries, oranges, broccoli and corn.
TIPS FOR BOOSTING FIBRE IN YOUR DIET
It's easy to get more fibre in your diet but remember if you're going from a low fibre diet then add fibre in slowly and you won't suffer the bloating discomfort than can occur. Try some of these ideas: