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As mentioned in the previous article, fiber is generally segregated into 2 groups – soluble and insoluble fiber. In this article, we will help to identify foods that contain higher amounts of both types of fiber and provide some simple tips on how to make your meals and snacks fiber rich.
Soluble Fiber Rich Foods
- Brussel sprouts
- Beans (black beans, kidney beans, lima beans)
- Sweet Potatoes
- Flax Seeds (1)
Tips on filling your meals with soluble fiber
- ABC soup and add lots of carrots into the broth when cooking. You can also consider adding carrots as one of the ingredients when cooking any type of soup.
- A favourite Asian dessert – barley soup. Home-made ones are recommended as the sugar content can be moderated.
- Consider a side of whole fruits and keep away from juiced versions, as they are much higher in sugar levels. Nutrients, and fiber contents may be greatly reduced due to the juicing process. Even though some may contest that cold press juices still retain the same fiber content as whole fruits, but still, one glass of cold pressed apple juice still requires about 3 to 4 apples to make. Drinking that one glass of apple juice will basically be consuming 3 to 4 times the sugar content as compared to simple consuming one whole apple in a sitting.
- Sprinkle flax seeds onto your porridge or dishes. You can also add them into your favourite beverages.
Insoluble Fiber Rich Foods
- whole-wheat flour
- wheat bran
- green beans
- Leafy Vegetables (2)
Tips on filling your meals with insoluble fiber
Chuck your breakfast of economic bee hoon or instant noodles for healthier options. Consider opting for whole grain bread or toast with peanut butter spread, low sugar wholegrain / whole meal or oat based cereals (look for low sugar options).
Instead of snacking on chips, consider going for baked nuts such as cashew or almonds. Keep away from the processed ones such as honey roasted versions as they do contain high levels of sugar and salt.
Another favourite Asian dessert – green bean soup. Home-made ones are recommended as the sugar content can be moderated.
If you bake, consider replacing partial or all of your flour ingredient with whole wheat flour instead.
Some additional tips is to really make the effort to include vegetables or fruits into every meal. Such as, when picking sides for economic rice or nasi padang to always include 2 portions of vegetables, keep a pack of baked nuts in your work drawer for snacking and always stock your fridge with fruits! The HPB’s quarter quarter half strategy is really useful as a dietary guideline.
By : Alvin Ho
B (Eng), MBA, Certified Allied Healthcare/Fitness Professional (EIMS), Master Fitness Trainer / Fitness Nutrition, Resistance & Endurance Training Specialist (NFPT)