Why is fibre so good for you?
1. Fibre slows the rate that sugar is absorbed into the bloodstream. When you consume foods that are high in fibre the sugar contained in those foods is absorbed slower, which prevents your blood glucose levels from rising too quickly. This is beneficial to you because when you experience a spike in your blood sugar levels this makes you feel hungry soon after you have finished eating, which inevitably leads to overeating.
2. Fibre makes your intestines move faster. When you eat whole grains that contain a high amount of insoluble fibre, it moves more quickly through your intestines, which helps to notify your brain that you are full.
3. Fibre cleans out your colon. By eating fibre this helps to clean out bacteria and any other nasty substances that have built up in your intestines, which in turn reduces your risk of contracting colon cancer.
4. Fibre helps to keep you regular. Eating fibre reduces the risk of constipation by encouraging soft, regular bowel movements.
Top 25 high-fibre foods
- Navy beans – ½ cup (cooked): 9.6 grams
Top of the list comes navy beans! You can receive 34% of your daily recommended fibre intake in one serving, but even if this is not your objective you should add it to your soups or salads to improve your overall health as it is one of the 30 foods that reduce your risk of breast cancer!
- Acorn squash – fibre per cup (baked): 9 grams
This sweet and hearty veggie offers up 6 grams of nutritious fibre and it is an excellent source of vitamin C, with one serving providing roughly 20% of your recommended daily intake, which helps to boost your immunity.
- Black beans – fibre per ½ cup (cooked): 8:3 grams
Beans, beans, good for your heart! They absolutely are, owing to the 15 grams of fibre per cup, which serve to reduce bad cholesterol and combat heart disease. They are also high in protein, which makes them an absolute essential for anyone looking to lead a healthier lifestyle.
- Chia seeds – fibre per 2 tbsp: 8.2 grams
Anything that exceeds more than 5 grams of fibre per serving is generally considered high. Well, one ounce of chia seeds has twice that amount. You can add these highly nutritious seeds to lots of different dishes, including your morning fruit smoothie, yoghurt, salads, or soups to ensure you raise your fibre intake and improve your digestive system.
- Split Peas – fibre per ½ cup (cooked): 8:1 grams
Despite looking very similar, split peas are actually different in their composition to green peas; they contain a whopping 16 grams of fibre in one cup. One serving of split peas will allow you to reach that recommended 10 gram meal mark with great ease. You can opt for the timeless classic of split pea soup or you try something new in the kitchen and incorporate it into more modern recipes.
- Chickpeas – fibre per ½ cup (canned, drained): 8.1 grams
Just one half-cup serving of chickpeas contains nearly 9 grams of fibre, so just sprinkling them onto your lunchtime salad will help you towards reaching your daily fibre target with ease. If they aren’t constituting the main ingredient of your meal then just be careful to keep your portion sizes small because they have a quite high calorie content of nearly 200 calories per ¼ cup serving.
- Raspberries – fibre per 1 cup: 8 grams
Generally speaking, fruit is a fantastic source of macronutrient, and with 8 grams in one cup raspberries come out on top. This berry is rich in antioxidants and if added to your morning yogurt, porridge or oats this will help to fill you up and carry you through till lunch time.
- Lentils – fibre per ½ cup (cooked): 7.8 grams
Beans and Legumes will always come out on top when we consider fibre. With just half a cup you can amass up to 7.8 grams of fibre, or if you choose to go for a full cup you could reap the benefits of up to 16 grams of fibre, helping you to maintain a steady level of energy throughout the day.
- Collard Greens – fibre per 1 cup (cooked): 7.6 grams
Collard Greens, a typical Southern comfort food, funnily enough can help you stay lean and in good health. They are a great source at fibre, weighing in at 7.6 grams of fibre per one cup.
- Blackberries – fibre per cup: 7.6 grams
Blackberries contain 8 grams of fibre per cup, which is heads and shoulders above strawberries and blueberries which contain less than half of that amount. If you have a sweet tooth these berries act as the perfect healthy alternative as they are bursting with juicy flavour.
- Green Peas – fibre per cup (cooked): 7.2 grams
Green peas are little veggies that pack a lot of punch. They contain a huge 7 grams of fibre per cup, and equally a hefty 8 grams of protein as an added bonus.
- Flax seeds – fibre per 2 tbsp: 7 grams
Flax seeds are packing some serious levels of fibre; from just 2 tbsp you get up to 7 grams, which is more than you’ll get with a couple of mouthfuls of broccoli. We recommend you add them as a topping to your salads or sprinkle them over your yoghurt for a delicious healthy meal.
- Butternut squash – fibre per cup (baked): 6.6 grams
This food is ideal for your digestive system as well as your cholesterol. This super filling and nutritious food is part of a high fibre diet, which has proven to lower LDL cholesterol in the body, also referred to as ‘bad’ cholesterol.
- Kidney Beans – fibre per ½ cup (cooked): 5.7 grams
Kidney beans can be incorporated into many dishes; they can be chucked into a salad, or a stew or a chili for example, and like most beans, they are very high in fibre content. They have almost 6 grams of fibre per serving, as well as 7.7 grams of protein which is an added bonus!
- Parsnips – fibre per cup (cooked): 5.6 grams
Parsnips are root vegetable closely related to the carrot family, and one cup of this scrumptious vegetable contains a whopping 7 grams of fibre. They are very versatile, you can roast them as you would potatoes, or steam them to help fill you up.
- Pomegranate Seeds – fibre per seeds in ½ pomegranate: 5:6 grams
This is a true superfood that is teeming with fibre! This tasty little treat also contains an abundance of antioxidants called polyphenols, which have been proven to shrink fat cells. Result!
- Pears – per medium fruit (with skin): 5.5 grams
One medium pear provides 5.5 grams of fibre, but to really benefit from this nutrients, you need to keep the skin on because this is where most of the fibre resides. This rings true for apples, potatoes and the white stuff on oranges!
- Broccoli – fibre per 1 cup (cooked): 5.1 grams
Broccoli is a super vegetable, which can be a great accompaniment to your next dinner or lunch so you can get that much needed fibre into your diet. It has some of the highest fibre content of most vegetables with over 5 grams per cup.
- Steel-Cut Oats – fibre per ¼ cup (dry): 5 grams
Compared to rolled oats, steel cut oats contain almost twice as much fibre, which why these should be your preferred choice. Overnight oats are a particularly popular and tasty breakfast option that will give your morning fibre a boost.
- Bran Flakes – fibre per ¾ cup: 5 grams
Bran flakes provide the perfect start to your day; if you have a 1-cup bowl of this cereal in the morning this can provide you with up to nearly 6 grams of fibre. Try to avoid opting for the raisin bran and add your own fruit to help keep the level of sugar in your meal down.
- Whole Grain Bread – fibre per slice: 4-5 grams
One slice of pure whole grain bread can contain around 4 or 5 grams of fibre and more than 16 grams of inflammation-reducing whole grains. However, as of late brands are boosting the amount of fibre they put in their bread, with some brands containing over 10 grams per slice. Look for whole grain over multigrain, which just means that there are different types of grains present.
- Whole Grain Pasta – fibre per 1 cup (cooked): 4.9 grams
You cannot put all pasta on the same playing field, some of them are actually good for you! They will absolutely vary from brand to brand, so be sure to read the labels of whatever pasta you buy. But in general, whole wheat pasta contain 6.3 grams per one cup cooked serving.
- Artichoke Hearts – Fibre ½ cup (cooked): 4.8 grams
Artichoke hearts contain an abundance of fibre, they are a great tasty little snack that will help you feel fuller for longer.
- Almonds – fibre per ¼ cup (unroasted): 4.5 grams
Nuts and seeds are a great snack for when you are on the move. Unroasted almonds are a great little snack that provide a whopping 4.5 grams per a quarter-cup serving. Opt for almonds that are labelled as raw, natural or unroasted, because when you roast them this depletes the fibre levels.
- Refried Beans – fibre per ½ cup (canned): 4.4 grams
Who would’ve thought you can get a good source of fibre from a classic Mexican side dish? The next time you go out for a Mexican meal, order a bowl of these to boost your fibre intake.