What Is Fiber?
Fiber is a very crucial part of our diets as our bodies, and more specifically our digestive systems, need it to function properly. Fiber is either soluble (dissolvable in water) or insoluble (not dissolvable in water). Both of these types are found in different dietary sources, which makes it extra important to eat a well-balanced diet including a wide array of fruits, vegetables, seeds, and legumes.
Fiber is crucial for proper elimination in the body. It helps keep our digestive system moving, which connects to proper immune health, skin health, and even mental health. Fiber also helps with weight management as it helps keep you satiated. Additionally, fiber also reduces our risk of developing things like heart disease, various cancers, and obesity. Let’s get to it then, and talk about the best fiber supplements!
What Fiber Supplements Should I Take?
Whole foods and dietary sources of fiber are generally better as they offer a wider array of vitamins and minerals. Fruits, vegetables, grains, legumes, and nuts/seeds provide different types of fiber as well as quality vitamins and minerals your body and digestive system require.
However, some individuals may benefit from additional fiber, and that is when supplements come into play. Those individuals who suffer from digestive stress, especially those who have constipation, would generally benefit from fiber supplements. There are many fiber supplements on the market including Metamucil and Benefiber. These supplements contain blends of high fiber sources: psyllium husk, polycarbophil, wheat dextrin, and methylcellulose. It’s important to look for fiber supplements that do not have added sugars or preservatives as that may end up harming your digestive and overall health.
Fiber Supplement Benefits
Fiber is beneficial when it comes to proper elimination and digestive health. Dietary fiber also contains a lot of various vitamins and minerals that can promote your health as a whole. The following are some benefits of fiber supplements and fiber as a whole.
- Increases bowel movements
- Bulks stool for sufficient elimination
- Helps make stool easier to pass
- Helps to manage weight
- Prevents heart disease
- Lowers cholesterol
- Prevents obesity
- Helps stabilize blood sugar levels
- Keeps you satiated and full
- Reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease
- Reduces the risk of various cancers
Should I Take A Fiber Supplement?
Fiber supplements can come in handy for those of us who are unable to get adequate fiber in our diets. Adult men should be getting at least 38 grams of fiber a day while women should be getting at least 25 grams. Many individuals do not get enough fiber in their diets, so supplemental options may prove more accessible and affordable.
We know digestive issues can benefit from probiotics, like Hyperbiotics PRO-15 Probiotic, but fiber can also help. Individuals who suffer from digestive issues like IBS, constipation, and diverticulosis may require additional fiber in their diets to help them eliminate these problems and increase bowel movements. Consulting a doctor is especially important when it comes to fiber as there are many underlying digestive disorders that could be causing you discomfort, and fiber may help or hurt those symptoms.
Do Fiber Supplements Work?
Fiber supplements have been proven to benefit not just digestive health, but overall health. The great thing about fiber supplements is that evidence has not shown them to be harmful at all. However, it is common to experience digestive discomfort like gas and bloating if you are not used to having fiber in your diet or if you have an underlying digestive disorder.
Although there are many benefits to taking fiber, the most apparent and proven benefit involves proper bowel movements. There are many products that claim fiber leads to weight loss, but that is more of a secondary benefit and comes as a result of a properly balanced diet and lifestyle and is not really a result of fiber alone.
Consulting with your doctor is important when it comes to fiber. If you suffer from a condition like constipation, fiber has been proven to be extremely beneficial, but dietary sources and whole foods are often a better option in order to obtain other necessary vitamins and minerals. You could also opt to buy very high fiber foods that many of these products contain (flax seeds, psyllium husk powder, or chia seeds) and incorporate them into things like smoothies and oatmeal.
The Best Fiber Supplements
This product is most commonly used as a fiber supplement. It is made of psyllium husk powder and helps to treat both constipation and high cholesterol. It has no added sugar, however, it does contain aspartame. This product is affordable and accessible and has been proven to be effective by many customers.
Now Psyllium Husk Powder
This product contains just psyllium husk powder with no added sugars or chemicals. It provides 6 out of the 7 grams of soluble fiber needed every day for proper digestive and overall health. It comes highly rated as well by a large number of customers.
Garden Of Life Raw Organic Superfood Fiber
This product is organic and all-natural. This raw fiber provides 9 grams of fiber per serving along with 7 grams of protein, omega 3 fatty acids, and probiotics. It also contains 15 raw and organic superfoods including flax and chia seeds as well as various sprouts. This supplement provides a great source of fiber from organic and real dietary fiber sources.
Alternatives To Fiber Supplements
Fiber is a very important and instrumental component in our overall health, especially when it comes to maintaining a healthy digestive system. However, there are many fruits, vegetables, legumes, and grains that contain very high amounts of fiber that can be just as beneficial as any fiber supplement.
It’s important to note though that fiber should be accompanied with higher water intake as fiber absorbs water and bulks up stool while also making it easier to eliminate. The following foods provide great sources of fiber and will help keep you satiated while also promoting healthy digestion.
- (ripe) bananas
- Split peas
- Kidney beans
- Chia seeds
Promote Healthy Digestion With Fiber Supplements
A healthy digestive system with frequent and substantial bowel movements is incredibly important for the body. It allows for proper immune system health, good skin health, good heart health, and good hormonal health. Fiber is crucial in order to promote overall digestive health and support healthy elimination.
Although supplements containing sources of fiber like psyllium husk power are available on the market, it is crucial to incorporate dietary sources of fiber whenever possible. Many beans, fruits, vegetables, and grains are great sources that also contain many vitamins and minerals as well as protein and healthy carbohydrates.
Now you know the best fiber supplements. Remember, healthy elimination and digestion are crucial for overall health. Take the leap to incorporate different sources of fiber wherever possible, and if necessary, use supplemental aid moving forward.