What is fibre?
Fibre is a food nutrient found in cereals, fruits, vegetables and grains. Some of these have a higher content of fibre than others. Fibre is the indigestible parts of these foods.
When we consume it, it passes through our stomach and intestines.
It is also a carbohydrate. It is considered an essential part of our daily dietary requirements and its main function is to help maintain a healthy digestive tract.
How much fibre should we consume?
The average daily recommendation for adults is between 25 and 30 g of fibre.
For children from 4 to 8, about 18 g, for girls from 9 to 18 between 20 and 22 g and for boys slightly more, between 24 and 28 g.
Most people consume too little fibre in their daily diets. A diet low in fibre can lead to health issues such as constipation, irritable bowel syndrome, haemorrhoids, diverticulitis, heart disease and some cancers.
However, a diet high in fibre can also cause constipation, bloating and general discomfort.
Remember, moderation is key and drinking enough fluid will be beneficial in aiding your digestion. The more fibre you consume, the more fluid your body will need to help it function efficiently.
Adding more fibres to your diet
|When possible, eat fruits with their skins on, such as apples, pears, grapes and guavas. Also eat fruits containing seeds, such as raspberries, strawberries, kiwifruit and dragon fruit|
|Beans, legumes, cereals and grains are all fibre-rich foods|
|Switch from white bread, white rice, white flour or standard pasta to whole wheat or grain or brown options|
|Quinoa is a tasty and healthy alternative carbohydrate to replace the rice or pasta in your meals|
|If you like potatoes, cook them with their skin left on|
|Chia seeds are also another option for adding instant fibre to a meal|
fibre + fluid + exercise = healthy digestive system