Soluble Fiber

High fiber diets are a trending topic in health and chronic disease prevention. However, not all fiber is created equal and unfortunately this important fact is not always considered.

Two Different Types of Fiber

Fiber can be divided into two different types:

  • Soluble fiber - thickens water (forming a jelly like substance) and most commonly found in fruits, vegetables, legumes and certain cereal (such as oats)
  • Insoluble fiber - fibrous material and most abundant in wholegrain cereals

Documented Benefits of Soluble Fiber

Soluble fiber is best known for it’s ability to:

  • Reduce blood cholesterol levels [pubby id="8283297,8396788,9925120"]
  • Regulate blood glucose levels (preventing sugar spikes) [pubby id="9353622,1851824"]
  • Improve gut health and act as a food source for bacteria in the large intestine [pubby id="23609775"]

Recommend Sources of Soluble Fiber:

Based on mix between nutrient and soluble fiber content

  • Vegetables (Brussels sprouts, carrots, celery, asparagus, onions)
  • Fruits (apples, oranges, apricots)
  • Root tubers (potatoes, artichoke, sweet potato, yam, cassava, etc.)
  • Legumes (peas, lentils, beans)

Additional Notes

  • There are actually different sub-types of soluble fiber, with some having more significant beneficial impacts on health then others, but this discussion may produce unnecessary complexity
  • Insoluble fiber is best known for it's laxative properties and improving bowl movement regularity