Fibre is found in all fruit, vegetables, grains and legumes. There are two main forms of fibre. They are categorised into soluble fibre which partially dissolves in water and insoluble fibre which does not dissolve in water. Soluble fibre helps control blood sugar levels, cholesterol and blood pressure. Insoluble fibre helps to reduce the risk of colon cancer and helps to maintain bowel function.
Make sure that you always check the dietary content or nutritional facts of the food that you buy. According to the American Dietetic Association (ADA), adults need between 20 and 35 grams of fiber every day. Gradually increase your intake of fibre and water to your diet. This will combat a feeling of bloating and flatulence (passing wind). Ever wonder why “an apple a day keeps the doctor away”? It may be the fibre or roughage in the apple that not only enhances our immune system but also ensures healthy bowel movements. Researchers have reported that rural Africans, who consume high fibre diets, have a lower incidence of diverticular disease, cardiovascular disease and colonic cancer than Americans or other populations with low fibre consumption. Too much fibre can lead to excessive flatulence, diarrhoea, decreased absorption of minerals, etc.