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  Views: 1,242,136,083     09-23-14 09:22 AM  

Well Being- Week 14




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Well Being- Week 14
- Fiber
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Posted on 10-10-11 12:02 PM BNuge is Offline     Post: 1569 words - Spell checked - (ID: 478694) - Post Rating: 0 - Report Abuse | Link
BNuge
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Cyro has been gone for a little while. I'm not exactly sure how long until he's back, but since I filled in once before I figure I can post a thread this week, so the series lives on.

I'm sure he has information prepared for Vitamin C Part 2, so I'm going to cover something else instead. I decided Fiber would be a good topic considering how important it is to the body. So I roamed around Google and found an interesting site called MedicineNet that had a lot of info.


What is Fiber?

A variety of definitions of fiber exist. In an attempt to develop one definition of fiber that everyone can use, the Food and Nutrition Board assembled a panel that came up with the following definitions:


  • Dietary fiber consists of nondigestible carbohydrates and lignin that are intrinsic and intact in plants. This includes plant nonstarch polysaccharides (for example, cellulose, pectin, gums, hemicellulose, and fibers contained in oat and wheat bran), oligosaccharides, lignin, and some resistant starch.


  • Functional fiber consists of isolated, nondigestible carbohydrates that have beneficial physiological effects in humans. This includes nondigestible plant (for example, resistant starch, pectin, and gums), chitin, chitosan, or commercially produced (for example, resistant starch, polydextrose, inulin, and indigestible dextrins) carbohydrates.


  • Total fiber is the sum of dietary fiber and functional fiber. It's not important to differentiate between which forms of each of these fibers you are getting in your diet. Your total fiber is what matters.


You may also hear fiber referred to as bulk or roughage. Call it what you want, but always remember that fiber is an essential part of everyone's diet. While fiber does fall under the category of carbohydrates, in comparison, it does not provide the same number of calories, nor is it processed the way that other sources of carbohydrates are.

This difference can be seen among the two categories that fiber is divided into: soluble and insoluble.

  • Soluble fiber dissolves in water to form a gel-like substance. Sources of soluble fiber are oats, legumes (beans, peas, and soybeans), apples, bananas, berries, barely, some vegetables, and psylluim.


  • Insoluble fiber increases the movement of material through your digestive tract and increases your stool bulk. Sources of insoluble fiber are whole wheat foods, bran, nuts, seeds, and the skin of some fruits and vegetables.



Fiber for weight control

There is some evidence that "bulking up" could lead to slimming down. In a recent study of more than 1700 overweight and obese men and women, those with the highest fiber intake had the greatest weight loss over 24 months. Results from the Continuing Survey of Food Intakes by Individuals (CSFII) from 1994 -1996 also supported the relationship between a high-fiber intake and lower body weight.

One of the reasons that fiber may have an impact on body weight is its ability to slow the movement of food through the intestines. The gel-like substance that soluble fibers form when they dissolve in water causes things to swell and move slower in the intestines. This increase in time that foods stay in the intestines has been shown to reduce hunger feelings and overall food intake. It has also been shown to decrease the number of calories that are actually absorbed from the ingested food. One study showed an increase in the number of calories that were excreted in the stools when high-fiber psyllium gum-based crackers were given in comparison to low-fiber crackers. Whenever fewer calories are taken in, or more are excreted, weight loss will generally occur.


Fiber for preventing heart disease

If we were to sit down and have a "heart to heart," I would tell you that one of the best things that you could do on your own to protect your heart is to follow a high-fiber diet. Numerous studies have produced compelling evidence to support this. In a Harvard study of over 40,000 male health professionals, researchers found that a high total dietary fiber intake was linked to a 40% lower risk of coronary heart disease, compared to a low-fiber intake.

Another study of over 31,000 California Seventh-day Adventists found a 44% reduced risk of nonfatal coronary heart disease and an 11% reduced risk of fatal coronary heart disease for those who ate whole wheat bread compared with those who ate white bread. One minor change in their diets provided a protective effect that could save their lives.

Another strong predictor of heart disease is abnormal blood cholesterol, LDL, and/or HDL levels. It appears that soluble fiber reduces the absorption of cholesterol in your intestines by binding with bile (which contains cholesterol) and dietary cholesterol so that the body excretes it. The oat bran and bean fiber intervention trials where dietary fiber supplementation was combined with a low-fat diet shows that reductions in total cholesterol levels ranged from 8-26%.

Other studies have shown that 5 to 10 grams of soluble fiber a day decreases LDL cholesterol by about 5%. All of these benefits will occur regardless of changes in dietary fat. In a trial with low fat and low fat plus high fiber groups, the group consuming high fiber exhibited a greater average reduction (13%) in total cholesterol concentration than the low fat (9%) and the usual diet (7%) groups. It seems that you don't have to change everything to gain something.


Recommendations for fiber intake

The average American's daily intake of fiber is about 5 to 14 grams per day. The current recommendations from the National Academy of Sciences, Institute of Medicine are to achieve an adequate intake (AI) of fiber based on your gender and age. The AI is expected to meet or exceed the average amount needed to maintain a defined nutritional state or criterion of adequacy in essentially all members of a specific healthy population.


Estimated AI Fiber Intake for Men

19 to 30 years- 38 grams/day
31 to 50 years- 38 grams/day
51 to 70 years- 30 grams/day
70+ years- 30 grams/day


Estimated AI Fiber Intake for Women

19 to 30 years- 25 grams/day
31 to 50 years- 25 grams/day
51 to 70 years- 21 grams/day
70+ years- 21 grams/day


Some helpful hints about fiber

1. Increase slowly The best way to begin is to figure out how much fiber you are currently eating each day. Once you know your number, you can begin to slowly increase how much you are eating until you reach your recommended amount. Increasing too quickly can lead to gas, bloating, and/or diarrhea.

2. Add the fluids If you do not have enough fluids (preferably water) with your high-fiber diet, you may end with the problem that you are trying to avoid: constipation. Get into the habit of drinking a minimum of 2 cups of a calorie-free beverage between each meal and you will avoid any unwanted problems.

3. Don't go overboard More is not always better, so try not to eat more fiber than your body can comfortably handle. There is no Tolerable Upper Intake Level (UL) set for fiber, which means that there is no cap on how high you can go before it causes any damage. Pay attention to how your bowel movements are responding to your fiber intake, and speak with your physician if you have any questions.

4. Little here, little there You don't need to get all of your fiber in one meal. Be creative, and have sources of fiber throughout the day. Here are some ways to do this:

  • Add flaxseeds, seeds, or nuts to your salad, soup, cereal, or yogurt.


  • Keep frozen blueberries, strawberries, and raspberries in your freezer to add to cereal, dessert, shakes, or yogurt.


  • Have cut-up veggies in small baggies available to take with you. Use them with a meal or as a snack.


  • Choose cereal with a minimum of 4 grams of fiber in each serving; you can have it as a meal, alone as a snack, or with some yogurt.


  • Beans and peas go with everything; put them in your salad, soup, or have them with your meals or snacks.


  • Go for products with whole wheat flour. It may take a little while to get used to the taste, so be prepared to experiment with different products until you find the one that you like.


  • Have veggies with your meals whenever possible. Anything that you add will count. The more variety, the more we eat, so have as many different veggies at one meal as you can.


  • Use fruit with, or in between, your meals. Set a minimum number of servings to have each day and be sure to reach it. Always go for the fruit with the skin and/or seeds for the fiber.


5. Be no gas If you tend to get bloated or gassy from raw veggies and/or beans, take Beano with your meal. It will greatly reduce these side effects and make eating much more pleasurable. Be sure to check the ingredients to see if it's okay for you to take.

There is nothing easy about developing new eating habits. It will take time and practice, so be patient as you learn to incorporate these suggestions into your diet. Use the information in this article to remind you of why these changes are worth the effort. If we are what we eat, it's time we become high-fiber people.


If anyone would like to share any info feel free to do so.

Click here to go to "Well Being" week 13
(last edited by BNuge on 10-10-11 12:04 PM)


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Posted on 10-11-11 11:22 PM Cyro Xero is Offline     Post: 116 words - (ID: 479726) - Post Rating: 0 - Report Abuse | Link
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Thanks for covering down. Fiber is a good topic. I should add that it's not good to take too much of it, though. I'll use my brother as an example. He's a bodybuilder and take supplements and such. He started taking in a lot of fiber a couple years ago to try it out. Over time his stomach starting hurting really bad, to the point he felt he should go to a hospital and have it checked out. Turns out, he was taking too much fiber and was affecting his stomach. So if you do take fiber make sure you really use only the recommended amount. Otherwise the benefits of it will turn into "OMG, WTF??!"

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Posted on 10-21-11 02:57 AM legacyme3 is Offline     Post: 49 words - (ID: 483864) - Post Rating: 0 - Report Abuse | Link
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I have to say I'm a big fan of this Well Being series.

When it's all done, I wouldn't mind putting together a list with the links to everything. It's a really good topic and I think it's a shame more people don't seem to visit the health forum.

Hitmonlee

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Posted on 10-21-11 08:00 AM BNuge is Offline     Post: 66 words - Spell checked - (ID: 483922) - Post Rating: 0 - Report Abuse | Link
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legacyme3 :

Well we did discuss a while ago (possibly in one of the older threads) that the hope is that this series won't die out. Cyro has been running it and I cover when he's not available. If we're both gone someday, then hopefully someone else can pick it up from there. It's a good series, so there's really no reason to let it end.


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Posted on 10-21-11 10:30 AM legacyme3 is Offline     Post: 52 words - (ID: 483940) - Post Rating: 0 - Report Abuse | Link
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BNuge :

I'm no expert on the topic, but I do enjoy reading these, so I like that you two are dedicated to it.

I think it's really a topic that needs to be covered, and a LOT of the board's members would probably benefit from you and Cyro's well being advice.

Hitmonlee

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Posted on 01-05-12 07:31 PM BNuge is Offline     Post: 8 words - Spell checked - (ID: 525368) - Post Rating: 0 - Report Abuse | Link
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Cyro Xero :

Ummm, what's going on with this?


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