High Fiber Foods For Managing Diabetes
What Is Dietary Fiber?
Dietary fiber describes the part of the plant that can’t be digested. Dietary fiber is an important part of the diabetes diet. It adds bulk to keep other foods moving through the digestive system, and it holds water, which in turn softens the stool for easy elimination. It can be divided into two types, which are essential to proper bowel function:
1. Soluble fiber forms a gel-like material in water. It helps restore regularity and lowers cholesterol. Good sources include oats, beans, peas, many types of fruit, and psyllium. Psyllium comes from a plant and is mainly used as a dietary fiber, which is not absorbed by the small intestine. The purely mechanical action of psyllium mucilage absorbs excess water while stimulating normal bowel elimination. It has been used in Metamucil. Now, it is being used as an additive in high-fiber breakfast cereal.
2. Insoluble fiber does not dissolve in water and moves through your digestive system quickly and largely intact. This is a cellulose fiber. It helps keep you regular by bulking up the stool. Good sources include wheat bran, whole-grain cereals and breads, and many vegetables. The secret to getting enough fiber is to eat a well-balanced diet that includes a variety of high-fiber foods.
Some ways to easily get started:
Eat more high fiber foods (whole-grain bread, brown rice, fruits, and vegetables) than low-fiber foods (white bread, white rice, candy, and chips).
- Eat more raw vegetables and fresh fruit, including the skins, when appropriate. Peeling vegetables can reduce their fiber, and skins are a good source of fiber.
- Eat high-fiber foods at every meal. Bran cereal for breakfast is a good start, but try to include some fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and beans in your diet as well.
- Increase your fiber intake gradually to give your body time to adjust, and drink plenty of fluids.
Learn more interactively: The Fiber in Carbohydrates.
High Fiber Foods
The following foods contain 5g of fiber or more per serving: Tape this list to your refrigerator door! Add to your shopping list.
- Whole grain bread slice, bun, bagel or muffin
- Bran Flakes, whole wheat cereal
- Oat meal serving
- Whole-wheat pasta
- Whole grains, such as corn, brown rice, barley
- Dried fruit (apricots, dates, prunes, raisins)
- Berries (blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, strawberries)
- Orange, apple (with skin), avocado, kiwi, mango, pear
- Broccoli, spinach, green peas, dark leafy vegetables
- Dried beans and beans (kidney beans, lima beans, black-eyed peas)
- Almonds, flaxseed, soy nuts