What Does Fiber Do for Your Body?
Healthy Living on June 30, 2018 by

What Does Fiber Do for Your Body?

A high fiber diet offers endless health benefits and is great for your body and your digestion. The benefits of fiber can include maintaining blood sugar, aiding in weight loss, and lowering cholesterol. We know it’s good for us—but what is dietary fiber? And what exactly does fiber do for your body?

A high fiber diet that contains both soluble fiber and insoluble fiber can include wholesome ingredients like whole grain bread, fruits and vegetables, beans, barley and more. Not only do high-fiber foods curb hunger and help to keep us full, but they can promote good digestion and provide energy that lasts throughout the day.

To understand how it specifically benefits digestion, soluble fiber becomes gelatinous when it’s combined with water. This helps slow and ease digestion, while also absorbing cholesterol. Insoluble fiber does not dissolve in water and helps push food through your digestive system.

So if you’re looking for a simple way to keep your digestive tract running smoothly, fiber is key!

Luckily, at Bob’s Red Mill, we have a whole slew of products that will help you to seamlessly integrate more dietary fiber into your diet in a tasty and flavor-filled way.

Let’s dive in, taste buds first!

Chocolate Protein Powder

Our Chocolate Protein Powder is a blend made from pea protein powder, chicory root fiber, chia seeds, beneficial probiotics and monk fruit extract (to give it a touch of sweetness). It’s vegan, gluten free, and is also a wonderful source of iron, protein and fiber.

What Does Fiber Do for Your Body? | Bob's Red Mill

To make our Magic Mint Smoothie, combine this iron-rich powder with milk, spinach, fresh mint and ice cubes. You’ll create a treat that is perfect for any time of day, from morning to night.

If you prefer a breakfast dessert you can sink your teeth into, opt for a treat like our Healthy Chocolate Protein Pancakes. Don’t let the light and fluffy nature of these pancakes fool you. They’re packed with plant-based protein and fiber in every decadent bite for a quick and nutritious breakfast. Kids love them. Adults love them. We all love them!

Buckwheat Pancake and Waffle Whole Grain Mix

If you’ve yet to integrate buckwheat into your daily fiber routine, you’re in for a treat!

What Does Fiber Do for Your Body? | Bob's Red Mill

This hearty Buckwheat Pancake and Waffle Grain Mix is made from ingredients like organic whole grain buckwheat flour, organic stone ground whole wheat pastry flour and a hint of cane sugar. Buckwheat provides protein and calcium and also contains a substantial amount of fiber.

Use this mix to make traditional buckwheat pancakes, or opt for something a little more creative—like Buckwheat Blinis, a classic Eastern European buckwheat mini pancake. As the recipe headnote states, these adorable morsels can serve as a homey breakfast or a fancy appetizer with crème fraiche and caviar.

Amaranth

Amaranth is both gluten free and a source of complete protein. It contains all the essential amino acids (including lysine) and makes for a deliciously unique hot cereal, polenta, or bread additive for a bit of crunch. It has an earthy, nutty flavor and is a great way to get creative with your fiber intake. Like the other items mentioned in this article, one ¼-cup serving has 20% or more of your recommended daily intake of fiber.

What Does Fiber Do for Your Body? | Bob's Red Mill

Alegria is a sweet treat that originated in Mexico. The name means “happiness” in Spanish, and in Mexico, it’s made to celebrate the Day of the Dead. The bars are made with just four ingredients: amaranth grain, pumpkin seeds, sugar and blackstrap molasses. With the amaranth and seeds, they’re a great fiber-filled snack for all ages, either on the go or in between meals.

If it’s something savory you’re looking for, these Amaranth Fritters make for a delicious vegetarian appetizer or side dish. In addition to amaranth, they incorporate onion, garlic, sea salt, vegetable broth, egg, flour and chopped basil. Serve them with tomato sauce or salsa for a fantastic--and fibrous--dish.

Brown Lentils

Like other varieties of lentils, these Pacific Northwest-grown Brown Lentils provide fiber, iron and protein in every serving. They’re quick to cook, with a mild and earthy flavor that works beautifully in everything from soups to stews. You can even use lentils as a substitute for meat in a wide variety of sauces (think: sloppy joes and spaghetti sauce).

What Does Fiber Do for Your Body? | Bob's Red Mill

This recipe for Creamy Lentil Soup leaves you feeling light and satisfied without sacrificing that sense of comfort. Developed in partnership with our fellow Oregonian friends over at Nancy’s Yogurt, the soup incorporates Greek yogurt, chili powder, ground ginger, chopped onion, minced garlic and chili powder with our lentils for a lasting and flavor-filled main dish. Did we mention it makes for sensational leftovers once the spices have had time to sit? All the more reason to make a big batch and keep it on hand throughout the week.

Similarly, Bob’s Shamrock Soup is also a known crowd-pleaser. It was featured at the 40th anniversary Shamrock Run in our hometown of Portland, Oregon, and combines chewy farro and creamy lentils, with kale, cabbage and celery for an iron-dense cool-weather dish (although, we think it tastes pretty good in the warm weather, too).

Gluten Free Honey Oat Granola

Our Gluten Free Honey Oat Granola is a high-fiber whole grain cereal that’s created with carefully sourced gluten free oats. It can be enjoyed with your favorite nut milk or a dollop of yogurt for a wonderful breakfast. (It’s amazing on its own, too, straight out of the bag.)

Enjoy fiber and flavor with these Honey Oat Granola Pancakes. These gluten free pancakes are made with just five ingredients: Gluten Free Pancake Mix, almond milk, eggs, oil, and last but certainly not least, Gluten Free Honey Oat Granola. Serve them with your choice of fiber-rich toppings like dried figs, coconut, or even dark chocolate. You can also add extra fiber by using coconut milk in place of almond milk and sprinkling a handful of coconut shreds into the batter.

Additionally, you can have fun with this granola by creating our blast from the past Cottage Cheese Breakfast Parfait. Inspired by our grandmother’s famous pairings of pear and cottage cheese, this pretty parfait is chock full of everything from protein to healthy fats and fiber. It’s pretty to look at and it’s amazing to eat! At Bob’s Red Mill, we like to consider that a nutritious food win-win.

Yellow Popcorn

Yes, you can get your fiber by way of favorite snack foods like popcorn, too! In addition to being fluffy, crunchy and delicious, our Yellow Popcorn is also whole grain, gluten free and a good source of fiber. Whether you’re popping it on the stovetop or in the microwave, rest assured that this wholesome snack is filled with fiber and a rich corn flavor.

For one of the best munchers of all time, try this magical combination in our recipe for Brown Sugar Banana Flax Popcorn. Yellow popcorn is combined with a mix of butter, crushed banana chips, brown sugar, flaxseed meal and salt. Just pair it with your favorite movie (or two), and you’ll be all set! We must admit it tastes pretty good with a handful of dark chocolate chips thrown in, too.

At Bob’s Red Mill, we know everyone loves a good bowl of popcorn. That’s why we’re big fans of this Herbed Garlic Hemp Popcorn too, which incorporates the flavors of dried rosemary, dried parsley and garlic salt for a delicious herbed party snack. Enjoy it with guests or solo!

Cranberry Beans

It’s no surprise that beans are a fantastic addition to any dish that makes the fiber world go ‘round. But what about cranberry beans? With a creamy texture and incredible nutty flavor, this somewhat under-used ingredient in the bean world can be used as a substitute for pinto beans in chili or baked beans.

For a cultural spin on the usual bean dish, try this hearty recipe, which takes inspiration from tavce gravce, the national dish of Macedonia. Topped with canned chipotles in adobo and a hint of paprika, it’s both spicy and savory at the same time.

If you’re in the mood for Italian, turn on your favorite record and create this Pasta e Fagioli. As the recipe states, it’s best with Dean Martin or Rosemary Clooney, although we’re sure it will be good with whatever sounds you choose to accompany it with (just don’t forget the fresh rosemary, thyme and glass of red wine).

Whether you’re adding a hefty dollop of chocolate protein powder to your breakfast smoothie or switching up your usual pancake routine to involve the wonder ingredient that is buckwheat, we know these fiber-filled dishes will make you feel good from the inside out.

Have any favorite fiber-inspired meals you like to create at home? Feel free to share them with us in the comments below.

We’d love to hear what sort of dishes you cook and bake to increase your daily fiber intake!

2 Comments

  1. terry l garvin
    Can you put uncooked oat bran in a smoothie, or does it have to be cooked. If you can add it uncooked, how much would you put in to a 32oz smoothie. Same question for wheat bran?
    Reply
    1. Whitney Barnes
      Whitney Barnes
      Hi! Yes, you can add dry oat bran into your smoothie. I would recommend for both oat bran and wheat bran to start with the recommended single serving amount 1/3 cup and 1/4 cup, respectively. Note that the dry bran will absorb a lot of liquid from your smoothie so you might need to add extra liquid and/or reduce the amount of bran to reach your desired consistency.
      Reply

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