Did you know that the digestive systems job is to absorb nutrients and eliminate waste products from the body? To do this it needs fibre from the food that we eat.
Fibre is found in plants such as fruits, vegetables and legumes. There are two main types of fibre, soluble and insoluble. Soluble fibre acts like a sweep to the intestines, forming a gel, and has been found to lower cholesterol. Insoluble adds bulk to stool to promote elimination.
We know from studies that many people fall short of the recommended 30g of fibre a day. Practitioners often have clients come to them with digestive discomfort complaints such as constipation, which can often be linked to low fibre in the diet. One of the best ways to increase your fibre intake is by adding more plants to your diet!
A variety of whole plant foods can easily get your fibre intake up and support healthy digestion. Some plant foods even have extra benefits such as oats and chia seeds that contain prebiotic fibre to help feed good bacteria in the gut. Ginger can help with nausea and fennel is a well-known antispasmodic, to name just a few!
- Increase fibre intakes slowly, to allow your digestion to adapt
- Cooked vegetables are easier to digest
- Soak and rinse your beans and legumes
- Drink enough water for optimal digestion
- Look out for foods you may be intolerant to
- Eat slowly, chew your food and don’t eat on the go!