Fiber is found in plants, where it functions as a skeleton to help plants maintain their shape and structure. Humans can’t digest the fiber so when we eat plant-based foods, it passes through the small intestine into the colon where it helps maintain regularity and bowel health.
The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines recommend that you consume 14 grams of fiber per 1,000 calories per day. They also provide guidelines based on your age and gender.
- Women aged 19–30 should consume 28 grams of fiber per day
- Men aged 19–30 should consume 33.6 grams of fiber per day
- Women aged 31–50 should consume 25.2 grams of fiber per day
- Men aged 31–50 should consume 28 grams of fiber per day
- Women aged 51 and over should consume 22.4 grams of fiber per day
- Men aged 51 and over should consume 28 grams of fiber per day
The problem is that most people don’t get enough fiber in their diet. but we’re about to change all that. Here are some of our favorite ways to boost your fiber intake today.
- Don’t Peel Your Potatoes
- Eat the Whole Orange Instead of Just the Juice
- Make a Fruit Salad
- Eat the Skins of Apples and Pears
- Switch to Brown Rice
- Buy 100% Whole Grain Bread
- Snack on Nuts and Seeds
- Add Vegetables to Canned Soup
- Try Oatmeal
- Add Berries to Yogurt
- Served Beans or Lentils as a Side
- Eat a Salad as a Meal
- Try Whole Grain Pasta
- Swap Fresh Veggies for Your Chips
Source: Nutritional Goals for Age-Sex Groups Based on Dietary Reference Intakes and Dietary Guidelines Recommendations. Appendix 7. USDA. 2015