Want to win a cool prize to help you with this week's challenge?? Read on!
It's Week 4 of the Habit-A-Week Challenge and this week we are going to work on eating more fiber! If you were successful in last week's challenge of increasing your veggie intake, you are already eating more fiber. This can help you lose weight because fiber is filling, and many foods that are rich in fiber are healthy foods. How much dietary fiber is in a cupcake? A piece of white bread? An Oreo? A candy bar? A Pepsi? A milkshake? A bowl of potato chips? Zero. Pretty much nothing, or just a trace. But when you start eating things like veggies, fruits, beans, and whole grains, you are getting healthy doses of fiber throughout the day. And fiber itself has NO calories!
There are many health benefits to increasing your fiber intake. A high fiber diet can relieve constipation, increase digestive tract health, and decreases the risk of certain cancers. It helps stabilize blood sugar levels, decreases the risk of diabetes, and decreases the risk of heart disease. It can help lower your cholesterol too. It helps you lose weight by filling you up with fewer calories. You can read lots more about the health benefits of fiber at the Mayo Clinic website, which also has a handy chart to let you know how much fiber you should eat per day, based on your age and sex. For example, a woman under age 50 should aim for 25 grams per day.
You can increase your fiber intake this week in a few easy ways. Try to eat a fruit and/or vegetable at each meal and snack. Choose whole grains: brown rice instead of white rice, whole wheat bread instead of white bread. Choose cereals with fiber (not cocoa puffs...) and add some beans to your meals. Nuts are high in fiber, too, but they are also calorie-dense, so watch your portions. When you eat a potato or an apple or a pear, eat the skin, as it contains lots of fiber. And of course, you can do something very pleasant: eat some oatmeal!
Speaking of oatmeal... I have some really cool news! Quaker Oats has invited me, along with 14 other health/fitness/diet bloggers, to come to their headquarters in Chicago for a "Living Proof Weekend" in November! According to Quaker, this weekend is an opportunity for us to learn more about Quaker, its business, and its commitment to heart health. Quaker has "Living Proof” that the soluble fiber from oatmeal can help lower cholesterol as part of a heart healthy diet in the form of real people across the country who have used it to help lower their own cholesterol levels. (Facts backed up by more than 25 years of clinical proof!) You can read more about the benefits of soluble fiber in the links above. I am SO excited to fly to Chicago and meet other very cool bloggers (*waves to MizFit*) and learn about Quaker. We will get to speak with a dietitian, a cardiologist, and a chef while we are there.
And now for the cool giveaway! To help you make fiber a Healthy Habit, Quaker has given me the opportunity to give away to FOUR lucky readers a month's supply of Quaker oat products. Your prize will include:
2 boxes of Quaker Oatmeal Squares cereal
2 boxes of Quaker Oatmeal to Go bars
2 boxes of Quaker Instant Oatmeal packets
2 tubes of Old Fashioned Quaker Oats
Lots of yummies! To enter to win a month's supply of Quaker products, leave me a comment about oatmeal. Answer any one of the following questions:
What do you LIKE about oatmeal?
How could Quaker improve their current products?
What NEW product do you wish Quaker would make?
What question would you like me to ask the dietitian?
I will announce the four winners on Friday! Good luck, and eat your fiber!