How To Add More Fiber To Your Diet Are you getting enough fiber in your diet? You might be surprised at how much fiber you need each day. On average, adult women need to consume about 25 g of fiber daily and adult men need to consume about 38 g of fiber daily. Reaching your daily fiber goals can help maintain the health of your digestive tract, manage a healthy weight and lower the risk of certain cancers (like colon or rectal cancer) heart disease and diabetes. However, it can be challenging to find the right mix of foods to meet your daily fiber needs. Following these steps can help you get much closer to your goal. Part 1 of 2: Choosing High Fiber Foods 1. Eat 100% whole grains. Whole grains are a healthful and fiber-rich food group that can help you meet your daily fiber needs. Aim for 3-5 servings of 100% whole grains each day. - Whole grains are minimally processed and contain all 3 parts of the grain: the germ, endosperm and bran. The bran is the portion of the grain containing the most fiber. - One serving of grains is 1 ounce. Aim to have a source of whole grains at most or all of your meals. - Examples of whole grain foods include: brown rice, quinoa, oatmeal, millet and corn. 2. Vary your protein sources. Protein is an essential nutrient to your diet. In addition to animal-based protein sources (like chicken, dairy or beef), there are a variety of protein-rich foods that are also fiber-rich foods called legumes. These can help you meet your daily fiber goal. Legumes are vegetables that contain a relatively high amount of fiber. They include: lentils, beans and peas. - Specific types of legumes include: black beans, chick peas, split peas, navy beans, edamame/soy beans, fava beans, kidney beans and black-eyed peas. - Legumes are a very healthful addition to your diet. In addition to being a great source of protein and fiber, they are also fairly high in folate, potassium, magnesium and iron. 3. Eat a fruit or a vegetable at each meal. Fruits and vegetables can also help you meet your daily fiber goal. Aim to include a fruit or vegetable at each meal and snack. - Top sources of fiber in the fruit group include: raspberries, strawberries, pears, apples and oranges. - Top sources of fiber in the vegetable group include: artichokes, broccoli, brussels sprouts, turnip greens, okra and potatoes with skin. 4. Eat more seeds, nuts, and legumes. Like beans, nuts are a tasty way to get additional fiber into your diet. Aim to add a serving of nuts a few times a week. - Peanuts, pistachios, pecans, sunflower seeds and almonds are especially great sources of fiber. A 1/4 cup of almonds has 4 grams of fiber in it. - Nuts also provide a healthy dose of protein and omega-3 fats. 5. Take a fiber supplement. Consuming the recommended 25 or 38 g of fiber daily can be a challenge. If you're having trouble meeting this goal on a regular basis, you may want to consider adding a fiber supplement to your daily routine. - There are many different types of fiber supplements available. Generally, they're functional fibers, a type of fiber derived from plants that's beneficial to your health. - Supplements may come in the form of powders, oils, capsules or chewable tablets. In addition, many processed foods contain added fiber. For example, soy milk or orange juice with added fiber. - Note that many health professionals recommend consuming as much fiber as you can from natural sources (like whole grains or vegetables). Always check with your doctor before adding any type of supplement to your diet. 6. Drink 64 oz clear of fluids daily. Water doesn't have any fiber added. However, with additional fiber in your diet, it's also very important to drink adequate amounts of fluids daily. Inadequate water consumption when increasing fiber can result in constipation. - 64 oz of water daily is a general rule to help you consume enough water. However, the Institute of Medicine recommends about 9-13 cups of fluids daily. - Fiber works best when combined with water. It will absorb water and help make your stools soft and mobile. - Drink water consistently throughout the day. Keeping a water bottle with you at all times to measure how much you need to drink can help. Part 2 of 2: Preparing Fiber-Rich Meals and Snacks 1. Add fiber to your diet slowly. Aim to add about 5 g of fiber daily until you reach your goal. Adding too much fiber too quickly can result in some gastrointestinal stress like loose stools, constipation, painful bowel movements, bloating or gas. - Keep track of how much fiber you're eating and how much more you need to consume by keeping a food journal or using a food journal app. These can help you tally up your total fiber intake each day. Read the full article: here !