Of all the vitamins, minerals, and nutrients in the world, I’d say this is the most important one to track on a daily basis to help improve heart function. Most people don’t even consider it when they are “tracking their macros”, or planning a healthy diet. That nutrient is FIBER!
A diet high in fiber does more than normalizing healthy bowel movements. It also controls blood sugar levels, lowers cholesterol, and helps aid in achieving a normal body weight. And, it reduces the risk of dying from a cardiovascular event.
Sadly, most people are deficient in daily fiber intake. If you want to take full advantage of the age defying nutrition from fiber, you’re going to need to up your intake to at least 30 grams of fiber per day. Unfortunately, many folks consume fiber in the form of processed grains, and flour that has many adverse impacts on our health. Your best bet is to focus on higher quality and unprocessed forms of fiber daily:
- Vegetables (3 cups)
- Fruit, like berries and apples (2 pieces per day)
- Nuts and seeds (2 handfuls)
- Beans (1 cup per day)
5 Tips To Increase Your Daily Fiber Intake
Focus on Whole Grains: If you’re going to eat bread, pick a bread that is whole wheat. Switch over to brown rice or quinoa. experiment with incorporating more whole grains into your diet like bulgar wheat (which is great in stews), barley, and wild rice.
Get It In Early: Skip the sugary, preservative filled breakfast cereals. Opt instead for oatmeal, muesli, or bran. You can even add a tablespoon or two of oat bran into your favorite morning smoothie to start the day on a fiber positive.
The Magical Fruit: We all know the bean song from childhood! Beans, legumes, and peas are all excellent sources of fiber. They are so versatile, and can be incorporated into just about any cuisine. They are even good as salads or snacks. Give my Black Bean Taquitos a try!
Snack With Intent: Stop the mindless snacking or grazing on chips and cookies. Get some fruit into the equation. Watch the calories, but a handful of nuts can deliver fiber and healthy fats. Plus, they are very satisfying snacks. When you’re eating things your body wants and needs, it reduces cravings and binge eating.
Ease Into It: Adding fiber to your diet is good for your heart and weight loss efforts. But, too much too soon can lead to some gastric problems like bloating and gas. My advice is to slowly increase your fiber intake over a few weeks.
Want To Know More?
If this article is interesting, and you want to know more ways to lose weight, feel better, and decrease your risks of heart disease, my One-on-One Heart Health Coaching may be a great fit for you. I might also suggest that you join us inside my private Facebook Group. Membership is free to everyone, and inside you will find weekly tips, recipes, Q&As and more.
Healthy At Any Age!
Heart health isn’t just something you should be concerned with once you reach your 50s or 60s. The younger you start with a heart healthy lifestyle, the easier it will be for your to maintain your health and fitness levels well into your later years. That is exactly why I have made my latest course, Healthy At Any Age, free to access by anyone! CLICK HERE FOR ACCESS!
If you don’t know where to start, I’m here for you. Each and every week I set aside times for what I call Success Strategy Sessions. These short (and FREE!) coaching calls are designed to get you moving toward your goals and reaching them at lightening speed. During the call we’ll talk about where you currently are, where you’d like to be, and come up with some quick actionable steps you can take right away.
These calls are FREE, but I only have a limited amount of time to do them each and every week. They are “first-come-first-serve”. Schedule a free Success Strategy Session today!