fiber is one of those terms tossed around the health & wellness industry but not always fully explained. if you’re struggling with your digestion, your fiber intake could be the culprit! fiber is so key for our gut - it’s super important to know how much you need and where to get it. here, you’ll find everything you need to know about nailing your fiber intake 🙂
what is fiber?
fiber is found in plant-based foods (fruits and veggies) and helps with many bodily functions:
- maintains normal bowel movements
- lowers cholesterol
- feeds our good gut bacteria
- regulates blood sugar
- maintains satiety
fiber has two categories - soluble and insoluble. we need sources of both in our diet for optimal gut health.
soluble fiber - creates a gel as it dissolves which improves digestion
insoluble fiber - improves passage of food through the stomach and intestines, and attracts water into stool.
- whole wheat / what bean
- dark leafy greens
how much do you need?
research suggests 14g per 1,000 calories is optimal. in general, 25g is the recommended minimum for most people.
some will be able to tolerate higher fiber than others, especially those on vegan / plant based diets as many vegan protein sources include a decent amount of fiber.
too little fiber will cause issues, but so will too much! everyone has a sweet spot for the amount they tolerate best. if you're currently eating very low fiber, don't increase a ton at once. build this up slowly for your digestion to have the best response.
fiber around training
fiber slows down the digestion of a meal, which is why it helps with satiation. however, in a pre-training meal where we want nutrients to be readily available, we want this limited. some fiber in your pre-workout meal is okay, especially since research suggests benefits from fructose (fruit sugars) pre-training, but just make sure the meal you have before working out isn't super fiber-dense.
an easy way to incorporate fiber? beam's super greens each serving has you covered with 26 fruits and veggies! don’t compare this to a fiber supplement - super greens is also packed with antioxidants and prebiotic fibers to help improve your gut microbiome, meaning less bloating and better digestion. and the stigma that greens powders taste like grass? forget it. beam’s flavors like pink lemonade and chocolate show you that you can look forward to your greens drink on the daily.
nailing your fiber intake with nutrient variety = the healthiest gut!