Are You Missing Out on this Key Nutrient?
Looking for a delicious way to increase your fiber this summer? Try blending some greens for a fiber-rich and delightful morning smoothie.
For starters, blend these ingredients in your high-speed blender:
- 1 cucumber
- 6 leaves romaine lettuce
- ½ green apple
- 1 handful mint
- 1 serving Vitality SuperGreen
- 1 serving EcoBloom
- Few drops of Liquid Stevia to taste
- Filtered water to taste
Enjoy chilled and drink with a straw.
Has constipation or irregularity become a constant pain in your life? If so, you’re not alone. Everyday stress and diets lacking in fiber from fresh fruits, vegetables and grains often cause our natural elimination processes to stop or slow down. If you’re lucky enough to not have experienced this type of digestive discomfort, take note of these important facts on fiber that will keep you well for many years to come.
At Body Ecology, we like to think of fiber as a kind of “broom” that helps sweep out your intestines. The addition of healthy fiber can remedy your irregularity problems, relieve pain and even prevent you from becoming ill or overweight.
The Fiber “Broom”
Fiber is absolutely essential for “cleaning up” your digestive system and restoring balance to your daily eliminations. Although fiber doesn’t break down in your body, it plays a major role in your digestion.
Fiber is the part of carbohydrates that cannot be digested by your body. So, when you eat whole fruits, vegetables and grains, the fiber particles (this is the bran in grains, the pulp of fruits and the cell wall of your vegetables) remain intact and push their way down your intestinal tract, “sweeping” your digested food waste and toxic substances along with them. Without adequate amounts of fiber in your diet, you are more likely to absorb toxins.Studies show that most Americans following a standard diet of processed and dried foods, like cereal and bread, are getting less than half of their necessary daily intake of fiber. Our in-house medical expert, Dr. Leonard Smith recommends 40 grams of fiber per day for healthy adults, and says that typical diets only offer about 14 grams of fiber each day.
Animal products like meat, dairy and eggs do not contain edible fiber, so popular high-protein diets are drastically lacking in this essential nutrient.
Fiber is Beneficial in helping to Prevent and Even Cure:
Fiber is also a source of pentose, an anticancer agent.
Double the Benefit
Did you know that there are actually two kinds of fiber? Both soluble fiber and insoluble fiber have an important role in keeping you well.
Simply put, soluble fiber dissolves in water and insoluble fiber does not.
Soluble Fiber: The Anti-Inflammatory Good Guy
Recently, studies have shown that soluble fiber plays a separate and distinct role from that of its more regulating counterpart (insoluble fiber). Without soluble fiber, your immune cells can become inflamed. But, when soluble fiber is introduced, an anti-inflammatory protein (interleukin-4) increases in production, changing these angry cells into the wonderful, helpful, healing cells you’d expect from your immune system.
Soluble fiber also helps your body with the following:
- Slower emptying of your stomach
- Delayed absorption of some nutrients and sugars in your small intestine
- Lower your serum cholesterol
A very important function of many soluble fibers is to be fermented by the beneficial bacteria in your gut to make short chain fatty acids (SCFAs), namely butyrate, propionate, and acetate. Butyrate both serves as an anti-inflammatory and “fuel of choice” for the cells lining the colon.
Insoluble Fiber: One Smooth Move
Make Your Gut More Inviting To Good Bacteria! EcoBloom is food for the good bacteria in your gut. Help your microflora do their job by adding EcoBloom to fermented foods and drinks, salad dressings and more.
Insoluble fiber is the fiber most of us are familiar with. Cellulose, the stringy part of celery, is an example of insoluble fiber. Since it doesn’t dissolve, it acts as roughage in your digestive system, providing bulk to your stools. Insoluble fiber retains water to speed the entire digestive process along.
Insoluble Fiber has also been proven to:
- Hold water you consume in the fiber/food bolus so that a portion of the water can be taken to the colon where it is absorbed. This water absorption takes place mainly in the right and transverse colon. In this process of absorption, your colon hydrates itself. It also sends the remainder of the water with minerals, vitamins and other nutrients, and some short chain fatty acids into the vascular system to be taken up and used by your body.
- Allows the bacteria and a variety of nutrients (especially the SCFAs) in the liquid fecal mass to be spread out over greater areas.
Food For Your Beneficial Microflora
Body Ecology has been specially designed to help you create a thriving inner ecosystem of healthy bacteria, or “probiotics” within your digestive tract. You need these beneficial microflora to aid in digestion, create vitamins for you, help you eliminate toxicity and even balance your moods. Fiber is important here because fiber is actually food for your beneficial microflora to eat. In this way, the bacteria can eat more and multiply, which increases stool bulk (over 50% of the stool volume is bacteria). The increased bulk promotes peristaltic action so that you can eliminate more.
What About Fiber Supplements?
Have you seen all of the fiber supplements on the market? They’re pretty hard to miss. The good news is that the mainstream is becoming more aware of the importance if this essential nutrient, but the bad news is that these products can be very deceiving.
Supplements may be helpful in some cases, but nothing beats the quality of pure, whole, organic vegetables and gluten-free grain-like seeds, like quinoa and millet. When you follow a Body Ecology lifestyle, these balanced foods are a part of your every day life. Enjoying a variety of delicious Body Ecology style grain-like seeds and land, ocean and cultured vegetables will ensure that you are getting a proper balance of both soluble and insoluble fiber in your diet. So, there’s no need to worry about how much or what type of fiber you are eating if you chose to follow Body Ecology, it’s all mapped out for you. And, the best answers are also found in Nature made whole foods. Not supplements.
While many sources will tell you to get fiber from whole wheat, oats and barley, Body Ecology strongly suggests against that. Wheat and gluten-containing grains cannot be properly digested and are known to cause food sensitivities. We’ve chosen the best sources of fiber that will also keep your glucose levels in check and help you resist candida and other fungal infections.
Great Body Ecology Fiber Sources
- Flax Seeds are very delicious and versatile. Add them to salads, soups, smoothies, dips and more. We added this amazing fiber in our own Vitality SuperGreen formula to nourish and care for your colon.
- Quinoa (pronounced “keen-wah”) is a delicious grain-like seed related to the spinach family, and is a wonderful way to ensure that you consume valuable fiber that eases elimination and tones your colon.
- Other grain-like seeds including millet, buckwheat and amaranth
- Refreshing green smoothies made with blended vegetables
- Your favorite salads full of leafy greens and cultured veggies
Too Much Fiber?
Although most people are seriously deficient in fiber, you may experience discomfort, like gas and bloating, when increasing your fiber intake too quickly. Remember, Body Ecology’s principles of “step by step” and “uniqueness” whenever you make dietary changes, even for the good. You must give your body time to adjust.
Helpful Hints to Get You Started
- Gradually build up your fiber intake.
- Increase your water intake as you increase fiber consumption.
- Exercise more to encourage peristaltic action in your colon. Yoga, walking and rebounding all help your colon function.
- Try colon hydrotherapy to hydrate your colon and teach your colon how to contract again.
- Too much soluble fiber can cause flatulence. If you’re eating a lot of nuts, flax seeds and carrots, then you might experience excess gas.
- If you experience constipation then try a magnesium supplement. Peter Gilliam’s CALM or Magna Calm are two powders that can be taken by adults and children to help with optimum bowel function.
1) University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. “An Apple a Day? Study Shows Soluble Fiber Boosts Immune System.” ScienceDaily 17 March 2010. 1 July 2010 <http://www.sciencedaily.com /releases/2010/03/100302171531.htm>.
2) Dietary soluble fiber alters Th1/Th2 balance in c57bl/6j mice improving LPS-induced fever and anorexia
Brain, Behavior, and Immunity, Volume 23, Supplement 2, July 2009, Page S55
C.L. Sherry, S.S. Kim, R.N. Dilger, B.M. Chung, L.L. Bauer, R.I. Tapping, G.C. Fahey Jr., K.A. Tappenden, G.G. Freund
3) Wolford, Ron, and Drusilla Banks. “Nutrition – Apples and More – University of Illinois Extension.” University of Illinois Extension-Urban Programs Resource Network – University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Web. 02 July 2010. <http://urbanext.illinois.edu/apples/nutrition.cfm>.
4) Colorado State University Extension. Rep. no. 9.333. Web. 02 July 2010. <http://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/foodnut/09333.html>.