High Fiber Diet – How Is It Beneficial for Healthy Heart?

Owing to different food habits and lifestyles, a lot of people these days have a high cholesterol levels and are prone to heart diseases. The borderline high level of cholesterol for women is around 210, so if your cholesterol tests skim around these levels, it is time that you take a step further.

Now, there are many ways to care for your heart and keep it healthy. What can you do that will ensure you the health of your heart? Starting a proper diet can be a pretty good start. Many clinical dieticians these days focus on a high fiber, to maintain the health of your heart.

Fiber food for heart

A daily fiber intake, especially from whole grains could prevent the risk of many heart diseases. People who maintain a fiber-rich diet, are less likely to acquire problems like metabolic syndrome, high blood sugar and high blood pressure or have a heart disease or stroke.

What is Fiber?

Let us begin with the very basic concept, what exactly fiber is? Fiber basically is a kind of carbohydrate, which the human body cannot break down and it passes through your body, undigested.
Fibers are of two types, dietary fibers, ones which can be ingested in the form of food and functional fibers, which are extracted in laboratories. Let us talk a little more about dietary fibers, food to consume during winter.

Dietary fibers are of two types the soluble type, available from food sources like beans, nuts, oatmeal, barley and many fruits and then the insoluble type, available from vegetables, cereals, wheat and whole grains.

The role of these fiber in preventing heart diseases have been studied thoroughly by many research institutes and notion that high fiber foods can actually prevent heart diseases, is derived from the ability of fibers in lowering blood pressure and cholesterol levels.

Now, you might also wonder, why many people aren’t focusing on a fibre rich diet. What I think is, there isn’t enough awareness regarding the benefits of fiber in maintaining the heart health. Taking a little efforts like putting some fiber rich foods in grocery list, bringing some nuts and whole fruits with you to snack on throughout the day can help you maintain a proper amount of fiber intake for your body’s health.

High Fiber diet for Healthy Heart

Benefits of High Fiber Diet for Healthy Heart

A lot of people already know that fiber rich foods help maintain a healthy digestive system. But many research have shown that fiber can do a lot more than that. In case you didn’t know all the benefits of fiber in maintain a healthy heart, take a look at the health perks of high fiber diet.

Lowers Cholesterol Levels

Foods rich in soluble fibers reduce bad low density lipoproteins (LDL) and also lowers the overall cholesterol levels. This may be due to the fact that, fibers attach them to the cholesterol particles in your digestive system and remove them from your body, before they can be absorbed.

Lowers Blood Pressure Levels

A high fiber diet, which especially consists of whole oats and whole eats can cause significant drops in blood pressure and pulse pressure level. A high level of blood pressure can be detrimental to your heart health and puts you at a risk of having heart attacks and strokes. Fibers lower the blood pressure levels and thus help your body maintain a healthy circulatory system.

Helps Prevent Strokes and Diabetes

Fiber rich foods can help prevent strokes and type 2 diabetes, both of which diseases can lead to serious heart issues. If you replace the refined grains in your diet, with fiber rich whole grains, you lower your chances of type 2 diabetes by 30 % and chances of stroke by 36%.

Helps maintain a healthy weight

Another big problem that we face these days is obesity, which is linked to high levels of cholesterol and can in turn be detrimental to your heart’s health. Fibers help maintain a healthy weight. Ingesting fibers give you a sense of fullness and helps you to keep regular pangs of hunger at bay. This helps you in portion management and thus maintain a healthy body weight.

Sources of Fiber

  • Cereals – Fiber One, All-Bran, Shredded Wheat, Oatmeal
  • Grains – Brown rice, Barley
  • Baked Goods – Bran muffin, Whole wheat bread.
  • Vegetables – Spinach, Brussels sprouts, Broccoli, Carrots, Green beans.
  • Fruits – Apple, Banana, Pear.
  • Legumes – Lima beans, Kidney beans, baked beans.
  • Dried fruits – Prunes, Raisins.
  • Nuts and seeds – Popcorn, Peanuts.

How Much Fiber Should You Intake?

  • Children

1 – 3 years: 19 g per day
4 – 8 years: 25 g per day

  • Females

9 – 18 years: 26 g per day
19 – 50 years: 25 g per day
51 years and above: 21 g per day
Pregnant women: 28 g per day
Breastfeeding women: 29 g per day

  • Males

9 – 13 years: 31 g per day
14 – 50 years: 38 g per day
51 years and up: 30 g per day

A number of studies carried out over the years have found that intake of fiber from foods and supplements have lowered the risk of heart diseases in people. It has also been reported to reduce the risk of diabetes type 2, high blood pressure and strokes.

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