Wednesday, April 23, 2014

A Critical Dietary Weight Loss Accelerator

If you have been reading my blog posts, you know I have been recommending detox as a way to restart the body’s metabolism. Unfortunately, because of an ongoing medical condition (see my previous post), I can't use Dr. Hyman’s 10-day detox at this point. I have been experimenting with parts of this detox, including the addition of more fiber in my diet.

For example, the intake of the right amount of dietary fiber (about 25 grams a day for women, 35 for men) complements the low sugar/low carb eating plan I recommend AND acts as a weight loss accelerator.

If you are not getting a sufficient amount of fiber, you are shortchanging your weight loss efforts! But weight loss is only a side benefit!

Here’s the Mayo Clinic listing of the ways the proper amount of fiber impacts your health: 
Normalizes bowel movements. Dietary fiber increases the weight and size of your stool and softens it. A bulky stool is easier to pass, decreasing your chance of constipation. If you have loose, watery stools, fiber may also help to solidify the stool because it absorbs water and adds bulk to stool.
 Helps maintain bowel health. A high-fiber diet may lower your risk of developing hemorrhoids and small pouches in your colon (diverticular disease). Some fiber is fermented in the colon. Researchers are looking at how this may play a role in preventing diseases of the colon.
 Lowers cholesterol levels. Soluble fiber found in beans, oats, flaxseed and oat bran may help lower total blood cholesterol levels by lowering low-density lipoprotein, or "bad," cholesterol levels. Studies also have shown that fiber may have other heart-health benefits, such as reducing blood pressure and inflammation.
 Helps control blood sugar levels. In people with diabetes, fiber — particularly soluble fiber — can slow the absorption of sugar and help improve blood sugar levels. A healthy diet that includes insoluble fiber may also reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
 Aids in achieving healthy weight. High-fiber foods generally require more chewing time, which gives your body time to register when you're no longer hungry, so you're less likely to overeat. Also, a high-fiber diet tends to make a meal feel larger and linger longer, so you stay full for a greater amount of time. And high-fiber diets also tend to be less "energy dense," which means they have fewer calories for the same volume of food. 
 Another benefit attributed to dietary fiber is prevention of colorectal cancer. However, the evidence that fiber reduces colorectal cancer is mixed. 
If you increase the amount of fiber in your diet, please drink plenty (64 ounces daily) of water.

Also, you may want to S-L-O-W-L-Y increase dietary fiber because you will avoid the excess gas and bloating that likely will accompany added fiber intake.

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