Friday, May 22, 2009

Health Benefits of insoluble and soluble dietary fibers.

Dietary fiber, also known as roughage or bulk, includes all parts of plant foods that your body can't digest or absorb unlike other food components such as fats, proteins or carbohydrates.

People who use fiber rich diet, unrefined diet may reduce the risk of developing obesity, diabetes, atherosclerosis, gallstones, haemorrhoids, diverticulosis, appendicitis, and colon cancer.

Fibers may be classified as insoluble and soluble fiber.

Insoluble fiber includes the woody or structural parts of plant such as fruits and vegetables and bran coating around the wheat. This kind of fiber is responsible in alleviating irregular bowel movement and constipation. It helps to protect against colon cancer.

How it acts?
Insoluble fiber pass through the GI tract largely unchanged and speeds up the passage of materials through the tract.

Soluble fiber found in abundance in beans, oats, barely, broccoli, apples, prunes and citrus fruits. It has the consistency of gel and tends to slow the passage of materials through the tract. It is responsible for easy elimination of your bowel and it is also a great help in reducing your cholesterol and blood sugar levels.

How it acts?

-One possible explanation for the relationship of soluble fiber to cholesterol level is that the fiber binds bile salts (cholesterol is a precursor to bile salt formation) and prevents their reabsorption.

-Fiber, particularly soluble fiber, can slow down the absorption of sugar, which for people with diabetes, can help to improve blood sugar levels. A high-fiber diet may also reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.


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