While getting in your veggies is a great way to keep calories low if you're trying to lose weight, they're also jam-packed with fiber. But you don't have to just eat veggies all day long in order to lose weight. We asked a dietitian, and here's what she said about how much fiber you need a day to lose weight.
Why is Fiber Good For Weight Loss?
Registered dietitian nutritionist and NASM-certified personal trainer Whitney English Tabaie, MS, said fiber slows digestion and helps you feel fuller longer, which may result in less overeating or snacking between meals, which can lead to weight loss. Fiber also slows the release of glucose into the bloodstream, which helps to maintain energy levels and prevent spikes and crashes.
How Much Fiber Should I Eat to Lose Weight?
The recommended daily amount (RDA) of fiber is 25 grams a day for women and 37 grams for men, Whitney said, but the average American probably only consumes about 15 grams of fiber per day. "I recommend people aim to consume at least the RDA, but really, when the fiber is coming from whole foods versus supplements, the more, the better. Some hunter-gatherer societies consume an upwards of 100 grams a day!" She added to just make sure to consume plenty of water to aid in fiber digestion.
Don't just start eating a ton of fiber if you haven't been! Whitney warns that a drastic increase in fiber, especially coupled with low water intake, could cause digestive distress and constipation. "My recommendation is to increase fiber intake slowly, drink plenty of water, and aim to get your fiber from whole foods versus supplements," Whitney said.
What Are the Best Sources of Fiber?
Great sources of fiber include whole grains, legumes, nuts, seeds, vegetables, and fruit. Here are some ways you can increase your fiber intake:
- Spread toast with nut butter or avocado instead of butter.
- Add beans to smoothies, puree into soups, and add to mashed potatoes.
- Sprinkle hemp seeds on your salad.
- Use a flax egg instead of a regular egg when baking.
- Dip carrots or pepper strips in guacamole instead of chips.
- Add chia seeds to your overnight oats.
- Bake with whole wheat flour instead of all-purpose.
- Explore different pasta alternatives such as chickpea pasta.