While doing research for my exciting new project—a low-cholesterol cookbook that will debut in January, 2018 (more on that in subsequent posts!)—I was reminded just how important fiber is to a diet that helps naturally lower cholesterol.
Which of course made me realize I’m probably not getting enough fiber. On the plus side, I am definitely back in the habit of a daily dose of Metamucil.
On the downside, that only delivers 3 grams of total dietary fiber, and 2 grams of soluble fiber, which is known to decrease LDL (bad) cholesterol.
How does that compare with the amount of fiber a person needs to consume daily to help lower cholesterol?
I could do better.
Adults need to consume 5 to 10 grams (or more) of soluble fiber to lower LDL (bad) cholesterol. As for total dietary fiber, adult women need 25 grams and adult men should consume 38 grams of total fiber per day (those over age 50 require less):
|Age 50 or younger||Age 51 or older|
|Women||25 grams/day||21 grams/day|
|Men||38 grams/day||30 grams/day|
Source: The Mayo Clinic’s article, Dietary Fiber: Essential for a Healthy Diet, which lists these as the total daily fiber recommendations for adults.
The Mayo clinic goes on to list fiber-rich foods (and clearly, I can’t just rely on Metamucil—I need to make sure these play a large role in my daily diet):
“If you aren’t getting enough fiber each day, you may need to boost your intake. Good choices include:
– Whole-grain products
– Beans, peas and other legumes
– Nuts and seeds
– Refined or processed foods — such as canned fruits and vegetables, pulp-free juices, white breads and pastas, and non-whole-grain cereals — are lower in fiber. The grain-refining process removes the outer coat (bran) from the grain, which lowers its fiber content. Enriched foods have some of the B vitamins and iron back after processing, but not the fiber.”
Are you getting enough fiber to help lower your cholesterol?