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Choose Fiber During the Holidays to Stay On Track

How can you prevent overeating and uncomfortable indigestion this holiday season? Go for fiber. Check out all the reasons why.
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It starts with the Halloween candy -- too many pieces to count. Weeks later you're on your third plate of Thanksgiving turkey and mashed potatoes. The grand finale is countless Christmas cookies and glasses of eggnog, not too mention a year's worth of canapes. There are plenty of ways to celebrate in the coming months and none of them usually help shrink your waistline.

But that doesn't mean you have to completely blow your healthy eating habits. What's your secret weapon no matter where the holiday season takes you? Fiber.

A Little About Fiber
Fiber is found in various fruits, vegetables, legumes and whole grains and there are two types: soluble and insoluble. Soluble fiber dissolves and expands within water to reach a thick, gel-like consistency. Insoluble fiber bulks up your stool, helping it to move throughout the body and prevent constipation. Both types are helpful for your health and can be found in most fiber-rich foods.

What makes fiber stand out from the other components of the food you eat -- proteins, fats and carbohydrates -- is that it isn't broken down and digested in the body after consumption. Fiber is separated out from the elements of your food that are absorbed and passed through the intestines until it's excreted as waste.

Benefits of Fiber
There are several reasons to make getting enough fiber a priority. Here are the top ones:

  • Digestive Regularity -- As previously stated, fiber helps bind with your stool to move it out of the body more efficiently. This prevents against constipation, gas and bloating as well as diarrhea.
  • Blood Sugar Regulation -- Fiber keeps the amount of glucose in your blood more stable, preventing those dramatic spikes and crashes that send you heading back to the table or reaching for an extra snack to restore your energy.
  • Weight Control -- Fiber fills you up. Simple as that. The gel soluble fiber turns into helps fill your stomach to help you feel full faster and keep you feeling satiated so you don't overeat.
  • Cholesterol Management -- Keeping your cholesterol in check can be a little easier with fiber. Soluble fiber is known to lower the amount of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) or "bad" cholesterol in the body.
  • Disease Prevention -- Better regulation of weight, blood sugar, cholesterol and bowel health can help you lower your risk for heart disease, diabetes, hypertension (high blood pressure) and even certain colon diseases.

All these reasons should be enough motivation to make your daily fiber consumption a priority. According to the Institute of Medicine and the Mayo Clinic, adult men up to age 50 need 38 g of fiber daily and 30 g daily beyond age 50. Adult women up to age 50 should consume 25 g of fiber on a daily basis and decrease it to 21 g after age 50.

Using Fiber to Your Advantage
Getting your daily fiber can prevent you from overindulging at the many parties and social gatherings on your calendar in the coming months. But how should you do it? Try these suggestions to meet your desired fiber intake:

  • Snack on fiber before you head out the door by having an apple. A medium-sized apple usually contains 3 g of fiber.
  • Go for the green with guacamole. If your host has put out a variety of dips, go for the guacamole. Not only do avocados contain healthy fats, they also provide 7 to 8 g of fiber in a one-cup serving.
  • Start the day with a fiber-filled breakfast of oatmeal. Having a fiber-dense breakfast keeps your blood sugar more stable throughout the day, which will keep you from feeling so ravenous.
  • Add a fiber supplement to your routine like psyllium husk or konjac root. You can even take them before you head to dinner or a party to fill yourself up part of the way.
  • When you hit the buffet, make yourself a colorful plate with fiber-rich foods like beans, peas, cauliflower with lean protein to stay satiated.

These simple swaps and tricks can mean the difference between starting the new year feeling rejuvenated or feeling bloated.

Other Tips for Holiday Success
There are more ways to conquer the holiday eating scene. Here are a few of them:

  • Drink a glass of water in between every alcoholic drink to prevent a hangover and to help your order half as many.
  • Eat a healthy balanced meal before leaving the house.
  • Continue to exercise regularly.
  • Sleep between seven and nine hours per night.
  • Try the two-bite rule and take two small bites of your dessert or another decadent part of the meal so get the taste and experience while staying on track.

Add more fiber to your daily routine to keep your body functioning at its best all season long. Get top-quality fiber supplements and more at eVitamins to help!

 

Exención de responsabilidad:
eVitamins recomienda que no confíe en la información presentada en este artículo como diagnóstico para el tratamiento de cualquier reclamo de salud. El contenido y la información en este sitio son para fines de referencia y no pretenden sustituir el consejo proporcionado por un médico, farmacéutico u otro profesional de la salud con licencia. No debe utilizar esta información como autodiagnóstico o para tratar un problema de salud o enfermedad. Comuníquese con su proveedor de atención médica de inmediato si sospecha que tiene un problema médico. La información y las declaraciones en este artículo no han sido evaluadas por la Administración de Drogas y Alimentos de los EE. UU. Y no están destinadas a diagnosticar, tratar, curar o prevenir ninguna enfermedad o afección médica. eVitamins no asume ninguna responsabilidad por inexactitudes o errores.
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