What is dietary fibre?

Fibre is the part of the plant that cannot be broken down by the human digestive system. It plays a very important role in keeping your digestive tract healthy. Scientific studies have shown that fibre can reduce your risk of diverticular disease, constipation, bowel and colon cancer. It has the ability to decrease your cholesterol and stabilize blood sugars.

Two kinds of Fibre

Soluble Fibre
This type of fibre dissolves in water. It has the ability to bind to cholesterol and reduce its absorption in the body. Therefore, soluble fibre can decrease your blood cholesterol. This type of fibre also slows the absorption of sugar in the digestive system, which means it can help control your blood sugars. Where can you find it: dried beans, lentils, legumes, oats, barley, apples and citrus fruit.

Insoluble Fibre
This type of fibre does not dissolve in water. This fibre will add texture to food. Foods high in insoluble fibre usually need to be chewed longer, can take longer to eat, and will make you feel fuller. Insoluble fibre helps to promote bowel regularity and manage constipation by making your stool larger and softer. Scientific studies have shown that this type of fibre can reduce your risk of colon cancer.
Where can you find it: wheat bran, whole grains, fruit and vegetables.

How much Fibre?
It is recommended that you eat 25-50 grams of fibre each day!

Benefits of fibre

  • Helps control blood sugars
  • Reduces your risk of heart disease
  • May lower blood pressure
  • Helpful for weight loss
  • Reduce your risk of certain cancers
  • Reduce your risk of intestinal problems such as constipation, hemorrhoids, irritable bowel syndrome and diverticular disease

WHERE’S THE FIBRE?

Bolded items indicate sources of soluble fibre.

Milk and Milk Products

Item Grams of Fibre
Milk 0
Cheese 0
Ice Cream 0
Yoghurt 0

Meat, Poultry and Fish

Item Grams of Fibre
All meats, poultry and fish 0

Whole Grain Foods

Item Grams of Fibre
1 slice whole wheat bread 2.4
1 slice rye bread 1.1
1 slice white bread 0.4
1/2 cup brown rice, cooked 1.0
1/2 cup white rice, cooked 0.3
1 cup whole wheat spaghetti, cooked 3.9
1 cup regular spaghetti, cooked 1.2
1 bran muffin 2.5
Breakfast Cereals:
Regular flakes and crispies – corn, rice oats, and wheat, 1 cup Traces
Bran flakes, 3/4 cup 3.9
All Bran, 1/2 cup 13.2
High fibre cereal, 1/2 cup 14.0
Whole grain, bite size, 3/4 cup 3.2
Rolled oats, cooked, 1 cup 2.2
Oat bran cereal, cooked, 3/4 cup 3.5
Mixed grain, cooked, 3/4 cup 3.8
Flax, milled, 1 tbsp. 2.24

Legumes

Item Grams of Fibre
Baked beans, 1/2 cup 8.8
Dried peas, cooked, 1.2 cup 4.7
Kidney beans, cooked, 1/2 cup 7.3
Lentils, cooked, 1/2 cup 3.7
Navy beans, cooked, 1/2 cup 6.0

Nuts

Item Grams of Fibre
Almonds, shelled, 10 nuts 1.1
Peanuts, shelled, 10 nuts 1.4
Filberts (Hazelnuts), shelled, 10 nuts 0.8

Fruits

Item Grams of Fibre
Fresh apple with skin, 1 medium 3.5
Fresh apple without skin, 1 medium 2.7
Apple juice, 1 cup 0.8
Applesauce, 1/2 cup 1.8
Apricots, dried, 5 halves 1.4
Apricots, fresh, 3 1.8
Banana, 1 medium 2.4
Blueberries, 1/2 cup 2.0
Cantaloupe, 1/4 of whole 1.3
Cherries, sweet, 10 1.2
Dates, 3 1.9
Grapefruit, 1/2 1.6
Grapes, with skin, 1 cup 2.2
Mango, 1 peeled 1.9
Orange, 1 medium 2.6
Papaya, 1 peeled 2.8
Peach, fresh, with skin, 1 1.9
Peach, fresh, no skin, 1 1.2
Pear, fresh, with skin, 1 medium 4.7
Pineapple, 1/2 cup 1.1
Plums, 5 samson 1.7
Prunes, 3 3.0
Raisins, 1/4 cup 3.7
Raspberries, 1/2 cup 3.3
Strawberries, 1 cup 3.1
Rhubarb, cooked, 1/2 cup 1.2

Vegetables

Item Grams of Fibre
Asparagus, cooked, 4 spears 0.9
Bean sprouts, raw, 1/2 cup 1.5
Lima beans, cooked, 1/2 cup 4.7
Green or Yellow beans, cooked, 1/2 cup 1.6
Broccoli, cooked, 1/2 cup 2.2
Broccoli, 1 med spear, raw 4.2
Brussel sprouts, cooked, 1/2 cup 2.3
Cabbage, cooked, 1/2 cup 1.8
Carrot, cooked, 1/2 cup 2.3
Carrot, raw, 1 medium 2.2
Cauliflower, 1/2 cup 1.1
Celery, raw, diced, 1/2 cup 1.0
Corn, cooked, 1/2 cup 2.4
Corn, 1 ear 2.2
Onions, raw, diced, 1/2 cup 1.1
Parsnips, cooked, 1/2 cup 2.9
Peas, green, cooked, 1/2 cup 3.8
Potatoes, 1 medium with skin 3.5
Spinach, cooked, 1/2 cup 2.2
Squash, cooked, 1/2 cup 1.3
Sweet potatoes, cooked, 1/2 medium 2.7
Tomato, 1 raw, medium 1.8
Turnip, cooked, 1/2 cup 2.6