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High Fiber Recipes

Almost every health magazine article or show exhorts you to switch to high fiber recipes. They promise that these will help you lose weight, improve digestion, and fight diseases. If you are unfamiliar with terms like high fiber low fat recipes and high fiber low calorie foods that are bandied about by health and diet experts, let us demystify some of these terms for you.

Do not be confused by all this hype surrounding high fiber recipes and their benefits. Fiber is an important part of your dietary needs. Natural fiber is abundantly available in vegetables, fruits, whole grains, seeds, nuts and legumes.

Fiber, also known as roughage, helps to improve digestion and the function of the intestine and colon.

Unlike carbohydrates, fats, and proteins, fiber passes through the body without undergoing absorption. It aids the digestive process and therefore high fiber recipes can help individuals with problems such as constipation or irregular bowel movement.

Following high fiber diet recipes have also proved beneficial to people with diabetes and high blood pressure. High fiber low calorie foods are recommended for people on a weight loss diet. High fiber recipes will satisfy hunger faster and keep you feeling full for a long time.

Before you set out on any high fiber diet plans, you have to take into account the recommendations for daily intake. The average consumption of fiber for men is 38 grams and for women is 25 grams.
So, what should your high fiber recipes consist of?

•    Whole grain products like whole-wheat pasta, multi grain breads, brown or wild rice should be included in any of the high fiber recipes calling for these products. Also, include quinoa, bulgur wheat and barley in your high fiber recipes. Try Indian whole wheat breads called rotis or chapattis instead of refined flour tortillas. Made with whole-wheat flour, these are a tasty addition to any high fiber recipes calling for tortillas.
•    Unprocessed wheat bran is a rich source of high fiber low calorie foods. Toss these into your regular cereal for breakfast. Include oatmeal in your ingredient list of high fiber recipes.
•    Vegetables and fruits are also rich in high fiber. Search for high fiber recipes that include vegetable salads, stews, and sides. Even if you do not want to give up your carbohydrates, including high fiber recipes such as a vegetable appetizer or salad will provide you with dietary fiber and you will consume a smaller portion of the main meal.
•    Many vegetables like squash, cucumber, and zucchini have more fiber and nutrients in their skin than pulp. Resist the need to peel tender vegetables mentioned in your high fiber recipes unless they are too tough or woody.
•    Nuts and seeds make for a tasty treat or snack. Look for high fiber recipes that include nuts like walnuts, almonds, pecan nuts, and pine nuts. An Italian pesto sauce with basil and pine nuts is delicious and can be added as a dressing or dip. Sunflower or pumpkin seeds add a nice crunch to your salads.
•    Since fruits contain fiber, which breaks down while extracting juice, you are more likely to benefit from eating whole fruit.
•    You do not have to sacrifice your dessert while following high fiber diet recipes. Instead of a regular chocolate chip muffin, try baking banana wheat muffins. This can be a great inclusion to your list of low fat high fiber muffin recipes. The pulpy banana fruit will provide sweetness to the muffin allowing you to reduce the quantity of sugar. You can even substitute sugar with honey, agave nectar or artificial sweetener. Cut down on the quantity of baking flour by mixing equal parts all purpose flour and whole-wheat flour.
•    Get a hold of high fiber recipes listing ingredients like peas, beans (kidney beans, black eyed beans, garbanzo beans, and so on) and legumes. Many Mexican recipes like burritos, nachos and enchiladas call for these ingredients. Make them high fiber low fat recipes by adding lots of fresh vegetables, freshly made salsa, low fat cheese, and sour cream over wheat tortillas.

While high fiber recipes can provide you with your daily need of fiber, remember that too much of anything can be harmful to your health. If you are following any high fiber recipes as part of your diet, ensure that you keep your body hydrated since fiber works best when absorbed by water. Too much fiber can cause abdominal pains or cramps. Some individuals may suffer from painful swelling or bloating in the stomach followed by intestinal gas. If your high fiber diet plan causes you any discomfort, do make sure you consult a doctor immediately.

Submitted on January 16, 2014