How to Get More Fiber in Your Everyday Diet
When you hear the words ‘dietary fiber’ you might think of dense, flavorless foods, or the kinds of foods you have to eat, not the ones you want to eat. But you might be surprised to know that some of your favorite, flavorful foods are high in fiber. It’s the fiber in those foods that gives them some of their deliciously satisfying qualities.
So, what is fiber, exactly? Dietary fiber is a non-digestible part of plant foods. And while you can’t digest fiber, it provides an abundance of culinary and health benefits that make it an indispensable part of a healthy lifestyle. Find out how to get more fiber in your diet, so you can reach the daily recommended amount.
How Much Fiber You Need Per Day
Nutrition experts at the USDA recommend that adults consume about 28 grams of fiber per day. But the average U.S. adult consumes just 16 grams of fiber per day and fewer than 10% of Americans get enough fiber from food. That certainly leaves much room for improvement, but the good news is it’s entirely possible to get plenty of healthy fiber while enjoying a flavorful diet.
A diet rich in high-fiber foods and supplements can help. Psyllium fiber supplements like Metamucil powders, can not only help you increase your daily fiber requirement, they can also help maintain healthy blood sugar levels* and help support heart health by lowering cholesterol.†
If you’ve been thinking it’s hard to bridge the fiber gap between the recommended 28g/day and your current diet, we invite you to read on for some fiberful ideas and inspiration!
15 Easy Ways to Add Fiber to Your Diet
1. Start Your Day with Metamucil
Make your fiber work for you by starting your day with a delicious glass of fiber-rich orange-flavored Metamucil. Made with natural plant-based psyllium fiber, Metamucil Orange Smooth Sugar-Free Powder provides 3 grams of fiber per serving – about 10% of your daily recommended fiber intake – in just one rounded teaspoon. Metamucil Orange Smooth Powder helps support digestive health*, appetite control*, healthy blood sugar levels*, and heart health by lowering your cholesterol†.
2. Trade Up Your Crunchy Snacks
If you love chips and crackers – and who doesn’t! – there are lots of delicious ways to satisfy your crunchy cravings while getting more fiber in your diet. Many new varieties are available made with 100% whole grains. Or, you can guarantee getting 4g of fiber with Metamucil Apple Crisp Fiber Thins. This way you can dial in the flavor and the fiber!
3. Add Variety to Your Snack Game
Crackers and chips aren’t the only things that go ‘crunch’. Try pairing your favorite raw veggies, like celery, carrots, broccoli florets, and sugar snap peas with a low-fat dip for a deluxe, extra-satisfying snack. Also, expand into new veggie territory by adding unusual varieties, like mild daikon radish (1.16g of fiber per ½ cup serving) or super-crunchy jicama (about 6g of fiber per cup).
4. Eat Your Fruits – Don’t Drink Them
Whenever you pour a glass of orange juice, you’re not only missing out on the mouth-watering aroma of a freshly peeled orange (or tangerine) but You’re also missing out on the fiber you get from eating the whole fruit. And the same goes for the crunch from a crisp apple or the bite-sized fun of a bunch of fresh grapes. Not to mention, you consume less calories and sugar when you eat a serving of fruit compared to drinking a glass of fruit juice.
5. Check Those Labels
Read and compare the fiber content of your food, conveniently listed on the nutrition facts panels, to find better options and switch to those. The FDA updated the specific fiber requirements to be included in nutrition labels in 2016. Though manufacturers are not required to list the types of fiber individually, some include the breakdown of the two main types of fiber: soluble and insoluble.
6. Choose Whole Grains
Whole grain breads and pastas are the sleeper foods of the high-fiber world. These might just be a game-changer for you! The variety and quality of foods prepared from whole grains is better than ever. So, if you haven’t tried some of recently, now’s a good time. In addition to whole wheat, you can find breads made from ancient grains, such as spelt and teff, as well as other popular grains, like quinoa, millet, buckwheat, and others.
7. Get a Little Nutty
Sprinkle a handful of your favorite nuts or seeds on salads and side dishes to add a pop of flavor and crunch. Nuts earn a spot on this list because they’re high in fiber, of course. Nuts and seeds are also rich in essential omega-3 fats. This makes them very healthy but also high in calories; so sprinkle away, but measure first so you know approximately how many grams of fiber you’re adding to your meal or snack.
8. Snack on Metamucil Fiber Thins
With 5 grams of fiber and only 100 calories, Metamucil Cinnamon Spice and Chocolate Fiber Thins are a sweet treat you can feel good about at your desk, on the road, or wherever you are. Individually packaged to go wherever you go, Metamucil Fiber Thins keep hunger at bay while helping you reach your daily fiber requirement.
9. Veg It Up
Set yourself a goal to add at least one fresh fruit or vegetable per meal to what you currently consume. For example, top your morning yogurt with a couple of tablespoons of blueberries or raspberries, add a generous handful of baby spinach to your sandwich at lunch, and prepare a high-fiber vegetable side dish (or two!) with your dinner. Also, replace your go-to starch with riced cauliflower. It cooks up quickly and is great as a side dish or try ladling on your chunkiest homemade tomato sauce or favorite stew recipe.
10. Add an Avocado to Your Snack Routine
What is a fruit that won’t raise your blood sugar, is a great source of healthy fats, is high in potassium, magnesium, and folate, and is a super source of fiber? It’s the avocado! Can your butter or mayo make those claims? We think not! A half-cup serving of avocado provides 5 grams of fiber. Use avocado as a way to reduce your saturated fat consumption from other forms of fat in your diet while adding lots of fiber. Avocado is great on toast, as a sandwich spread, on salads, and blended up as the base for a creamy, healthy, salad dressing.
11. Smoother Smoothies
If you are a fruit smoothie lover use a powder fiber supplement like Metamucil in your smoothies to boost your daily fiber intake. It can blend into smoothies and adds an orange flavor or be unflavored. Consider a tropical fruit smoothie, or another Metamucil smoothie recipe.
12. Don’t Forget the Beans
An often-overlooked source of fiber, beans are also high in protein, and they’re fat free. Their versatility is as great as their taste. You can use them as a main dish in soups, stews, and chili; as a side dish; on salads; or whiz up a yummy bean dip as an accompaniment to veggie sticks. There are also delicious, pastas available made from black beans, chickpeas, lentils, and dried peas. Now, those are some great high-fiber options!
13. Better than Butter
Stir some wheat germ into your nut butters to add delicious chewiness and healthy fiber. Wheat germ has a slightly sweet, nutty flavor of its own that complements peanut, almond and other nut butters. And it’s high in fiber, with just under 2g of fiber per 2 Tbsp serving.
14. Replace Potatoes With…
Brown rice, wild rice, quinoa, barley, bulgur, you get the idea. Potatoes provide a lot of carbs but very little fiber. And with so many delicious whole grains and creative ways to use them, we’re sure you’ll never look back. Use these in your pilaf and stuffing recipes, as the main ingredient in grain salads or a featured addition to green leafy salads, in soups and stews, and just about any other dish you normally use potatoes.
15. Try Metamucil Gummies
Figuring out how to get more fiber into your diet can be as easy as eating great-tasting gummies. Metamucil Gummies let you enjoy all the fruity gumminess you crave and provide 5 grams of fiber per serving. Metamucil Gummies are made with a prebiotic fiber that feeds the good bacteria in your digestive tract,* so these gummies are good for your tummy!