Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Habit-A-Week Challenge: Fiber Up!

The challenge for this week, as part of the Habit-A-Week Challenge, is: eat more fiber!

Please click to read this post explaining this week's habit, and then come back to finish reading here. (There is a giveaway at the end of that post, but remember, that post is from 2008 and it is OVER!)


That was a pretty short and simple post. But the goal is fairly simple: increase your fiber to an appropriate level for your health.

Now, let's just say you are already getting tons of fiber, because you eat Fiber One bars, Benefiber supplements, Fiber One yogurt, Splenda with fiber in it, and Fiber One pop tarts. Well, here's a challenge for you: Get your fiber from REAL FOOD.

Seriously. I guess eating a ton of inulin (chicory root extract, which is the fiber source for most of these new high-fiber fake foods) is better than eating no fiber at all, but look at the carrier for your fiber. What I mean by that is: are you getting fiber carried in a healthy nutritious wrapper, like maybe kale leaves or carrots? Or are you ingesting your fiber in a carrier of artificial and unhealthy junk, such as sugar, dextrose, high maltose corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup, and maltodextrin (taken from the Fiber One Oats & Chocolate bar ingredient list)? Think about it. Make a better choice. I know convenience is important, but how much more trouble is it to pack a fresh pear for your snack than a Fiber One bar?

Here are some good Real Food choices for fiber:
pears (6 grams)
raspberries (8 grams per cup)
3 dried figs or dates (6 grams)
apple (5 grams)
2 kiwis (6 grams)
1/2 avocado (5 grams)
artichoke (7 grams)

Other great fiber sources are beans, peas, lentils, split peas, nuts, seeds, whole grains (like oatmeal, brown rice, whole wheat bread), parsnips, chickpeas, Brussels sprouts, and green beans. Even a snack of popcorn gives you 3.5 grams of fiber in 3 cups. Most vegetables have fiber, and so do most fruits, especially if you eat the skin. Here's a list: high fiber foods and another: high fiber foods 2.

So try to increase or improve your fiber intake this week, and see where it takes you. More whole foods = more nutrients, and hopefully, better health!

What's your favorite high fiber food?


midlife_swimmer said...

MY favs are berries, artichokes, oatmeal and wow now AVACADO... dang I never knew they had that much.

Marste said...

Fiber One bars!!

. . .

Oh, wait . . . ;)

I love avocados. LOVE. And I'm quite partial to white beans. I always thought I hated beans - turns out I just hate MOST beans. But I really like white beans. (Which, it turns out, have more fiber than almost any other bean!)

seth said...

This is good info to have. I recently posted on fiber as well. I love my fruits and vegetables and am not a fan of all of the artificial sources of fiber.

ClistyB said...

The Fiber One bars are so tasty, but they make the kids and I reeeeek. Bad. So, they aren't for us any longer
Back to the normal stuff.

Chibi Jeebs said...

I've been working on upping my fiber intake as of Sunday per my doctor's instructions. I am using Benefiber in my tea in the morning, but the rest of my fiber is coming from fruits, veggies, & whole grains. I'm doing well so far, and averaging about 30 grams.

Margie M. said...

I saw a commercial recently where they are adding fiber to Splenda. Oh, give me a break! That is the artificial fiber they add to so many things. Who really wants to get their fiber allotment that way?
Anyway, I like to get some fiber through my crockpot oatmeal blend of old fashioned oats, steel cut oats, barley and brown rice. Yummy!

Fiber through all the fruits and veggies you posted on is great, too!

Andra said...

Fiber One bars... HA, I love my fiber with a side of HFCS. NOT! Apples, pears, beans and dark leafy greens are my favorite sources of fiber. I also make homemade sunflower bread which uses oat bran, whole wheat flour, whole grain oats and sunflower seeds. Mmmm, I love avocados, too. I knew they were loaded with good fat but didn't realize they were a good fiber source, too. YAY!

Salted with Shadows said...

Fiber can be really hard to fit in...great post!

BrendaKaye said...

I like berries and oatmeal. Now that I just typed that I am wondering why I never eat berries in my oatmeal. I am gonna have to try that!

Anonymous said...

Great information!
I do include fiber-full fruits and veggies in my diet, but also indulge in a Fiber One bar a once or twice a week. They successfully quench my need for sweets without allowing for any type of binge.

Vickie said...

1 cup lightly steamed broccoli with NO salt:

Nutrition Facts
Calories 55 (228 kJ)
% Daily Value 1
Total Fat 0.6g 1%
Sat. Fat 0.1g 1%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 64mg 3%
Total Carbs. 11.2g 4%
Dietary Fiber 5.1g 21%
Sugars 2.2g
Protein 3.7g
Calcium 62.4mg
Potassium 457.1mg

and when the fiber is subtracted from the carbs, it is a reasonable number of carbs.

(nearly daily) broccoli has made a huge difference in my GI troubles.

Vickie said...

2 cups and I am at a full serving of protein too!

Lauren said...

So glad you included pears. I LOVE pears as a high-fiber snack. I truly find that I feel amazing when I eat more natural fiber. It regulates my digestion and makes me feel so much less bloated.

All Women Stalker said...

I love avocados. I don't eat a lot of veggies so I'm all for other sources of fiber.

Crabby McSlacker said...

I so agree with you about getting fiber from REAL foods.

The kind of foods that have fiber almost always have lots of phytonutrients too which are so good for health and disease prevention. Plus, it breaks that "coookie" type craving to not be reaching for processed foods all the time.

Great advice!

screwdestiny said...

Mmm, I love me some Fiber One bars. And they're actually mildly filling, so I'm usually good at eating just one! But I also love fruit and get a decent amount of fiber from that. I could always get more though.

Heather said...

I couldnt agree more. that principle should be applied to any rule with food - dont waste your 100 calories on a processed 100 calorie pack, go eat some real, natural food that is better for you, that will fill you up, and you can eat way more than a few cookies in a bag.

Laura said...

i'm laura & i just found your blog. I love it, your posts are fun to read.

Fibre is so important