Eating a healthy diet rich in high fiber whole foods can help avoid some digestive health problems. Constipation, diarrhea, and hemorrhoid irritation can all be improved by eating more fiber. It also lowers cholesterol! Yet most of us don’t consume nearly enough fiber in our diets, certainly not the recommended 25-35 grams per day, and miss out on all the benefits that fiber offers. A common problem is that foods that are easily accessible and quick to put together for a meal are often very low in fiber, and high in fat, calories, and salt. The good news is that there are some easy, tasty ways to increase your fiber intake.
Who doesn’t love smoothies? When you make your own, you can customize it to suit your exact tastes. This is the perfect way to add fruits and vegetables that are high in fiber and added liquids and nutrients to your diet. Spinach and carrots are both high-fiber vegetables that can work well in smoothies. Strawberries, bananas, blueberries, and raspberries all have a healthy helping of fiber as well. Mix and match different fruits and vegetables to find your favorites for amazing custom-blend smoothies.
Soups and Salads
Soups and salads are a delicious way to add high fiber fruits and vegetables to your diet. For soups, add vegetables that hold up well to heat. Kale can be great in soups, and adding carrots, celery, broccoli, peas, beans, and lentils are also excellent ways to increase fiber. Salads naturally lend themselves towards being a high-fiber dish. Aside from vegetables, pieces of fruit and berries can be a tasty, fibrous addition. Add some nuts and seeds for a healthy crunch that tastes good and adds some extra fiber.
Snacking may be one of the easiest places to lose out on fiber, or to sneak it in. Apple slices (with the peel on them) can be a great snack. Try dipping them in peanut butter for some extra protein. A small handful of nuts provides both protein and fiber. You might also try snacking on whole grain crackers or raw vegetables dipped in hummus or mashed avocado. Since part of what makes less fibrous snacks so appealing is how convenient they are, give yourself a hand and do some food prep ahead of time so that the healthier snacks are at least as convenient as the less healthy options.
Eating more fiber doesn’t have to be a chore. It doesn’t have to be bland or unpleasant either. In fact, smoothies, soups, salads, and snacks can be the perfect way to add more fiber to your diet without compromising taste at all. Enjoy all the benefits of consuming more fiber in addition to the other nutrients that come along with it.
Along with adding fiber to your diet, adding liquids is essential, and water is the healthiest drink you can have. Adding too much fiber without increasing your fluid intake could spell trouble. When adding fiber to your diet, start slowly, increase your water intake and MOVE! Fiber, water, and exercise are the trifecta of promoting good digestive health and helping avoid problems like hemorrhoids.
Remember, eating more fiber can reduce your risk of developing hemorrhoids. If you have hemorrhoids or are concerned about developing them, check out our list of Symptoms of Hemorrhoids to learn how they can be treated, or avoided.