Fiber is one of the many carbohydrates that provides everyone with a wide range of health benefits. It is a compound that the body cannot break down during digestion. It is found in fruits, whole grains, legumes, and vegetables.
What are the benefits of fiber in people with diabetes?
Doctors recommend a fiber-filled diet to support blood sugar management in diabetes. An adequate amount of this compound provides the following health benefits:
- Steady blood glucose levels – Eating a fiber-rich diet improves blood sugar control. Since the body cannot break down fiber, it prevents a spike in blood sugar levels. It makes diabetes management more effortless.
- Encourage weight loss – One of the healthful benefits of fiber-rich foods is that it keeps a person feeling full for an extended period. Eating fiber-rich foods means eating less, helping you lose weight and preventing obesity.
- Reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease – An adequate supply of fiber in the body prevents heart disease.
Types of Fiber
There are two different types of fiber. These are as follows:
- Soluble fiber – This type dissolves in water. It functions by assisting blood glucose control. The best sources of soluble fiber are beans, peas, oats, lentils, avocados, and sprouts.
- Insoluble fiber – This type does not dissolve in water. Besides controlling blood glucose, it also prevents constipation. Some of its best sources are legumes, carrots, whole wheat bread, cucumbers, and tomatoes.
List of high fiber foods
The following is the list of high fiber foods that people with diabetes can add to their daily diet:
- Beans – Two of the most common fiber-rich beans are black and lima beans. A ¾ cup of cooked black beans contains 5.4 grams of fiber. On the other hand, lima beans contain 5.3 grams of fiber.
- Lentils – A cup of cooked lentils contains a generous 15 grams of fiber. You do not need other sources of fiver if you eat lentils. However, you can still opt to add lentils to your soup or salad recipes.
- Apple – One medium apple contains 4.2 grams of fiber. Make sure to eat this fruit with its skin.
- Avocados – A ¼ cup of avocado serving contains more than 2 grams of fiber – both soluble and insoluble. Besides being fiber-rich, avocados are also a good source of omega-3 fatty acids that prevent cardiovascular diseases.
- Peas – A ½ cup of cooked green peas contains 3.2 grams of fiber. Besides having a good amount of soluble fiber, green peas are also a prime source of vitamins A, C, and K.
- Broccoli – A ½ cup of raw broccoli contains 1.3 grams of fiber. It is also a great source of Vitamins C and K. You can add this vegetable into pasta or casserole for better taste.
- Berries – A cup of berries has 3 grams of fiber. What’s unique about berries is that they are full of antioxidants. These compounds are not just beneficial in treating inflammations but also help in maintaining blood glucose control.
- Oatmeal – Oatmeal is a whole grain that contains a good amount of insoluble fiber. A ½ cup of rolled oats has 4 grams of fiber, enough to help balance blood sugar levels.
Taking any fiber-rich foods can help in improving our overall health. If you add them to your daily diet, they can help lower the risk of diabetes attacks and maintain your blood sugar levels.