Can I Take Fiber Supplements Instead of Eating Fiber?

Taking fiber supplements can be an effective way to increase your daily intake without having to make drastic changes to your diet or lifestyle.

Can I Take Fiber Supplements Instead of Eating Fiber?

It's best to get fiber from food, because supplements don't provide the vitamins, minerals and other nutrients that fiber-rich foods provide. However, fiber supplements can contribute to the recommended daily intake. Yes, and research suggests that the ideal is to meet fiber needs or, at least, a large part of it through the natural fiber in food. Fiber supplements can be used to increase the dietary fiber you get from food.

They can help ensure a regular bowel movement, treat acute episodes of constipation, and help lower cholesterol and blood sugar. There is evidence that they can reduce the risk of heart disease and even colon cancer. In this case, it's not a bad idea to add some fortified foods or a supplement, especially if you have a condition such as heart disease, prediabetes, type 2 diabetes, or a gastrointestinal problem, such as constipation. Fiber supplements come in a variety of formulations, including powders to be mixed with water or other liquid or capsules to be swallowed whole.

Fermentation refers to the rate and degree to which intestinal bacteria can break down a dietary fiber, after resisting enzymatic digestion in the small intestine, producing fermentation byproducts, such as short-chain fatty acids and gas. The authors concluded that the findings support the usefulness of medium and high viscosity gel-forming fibers as cholesterol-lowering therapy, but cautioned that the benefits of lowering cholesterol should not be attributed solely to a classification of solubility. Before arriving at an answer about fiber supplements, it's helpful to understand the purpose of fiber in general. Fiber is an essential part of a healthy diet and is important for digestive health.

It helps keep your digestive system running smoothly by adding bulk to your stool and helping it move through your intestines more quickly. It also helps keep your blood sugar levels stable by slowing down the absorption of sugar into your bloodstream. In addition to increasing the normal daily intake of fiber, people also use fiber supplements with the intention of improving the quality and regularity of bowel movements; for example, these supplements are sometimes recommended to older people to prevent constipation or bloating when their appetite is too low to maintain regular eating habits. The clinically proven health benefits of fiber supplements are associated with specific characteristics (p.

e.g., viscous gel), and only a minority of marketed fiber products offer health benefits (summarized in the table). But is reaping the benefits of a high-fiber diet as simple as achieving a daily quota of grams of fiber through supplements and fortified products? I researched the research to see if it really matters where the fiber comes from. These studies have also indicated that long-term use of supplements has no harmful effects. As fiber supplements have grown in popularity over the years, the number and variety of options have also increased.

The basic premise of taking fiber supplements is that you can take the supplement to support your daily needs without having to modify your diet at all. In response to the Atkins diet and other fad diets, a lot of attention was paid to how sugar in carbohydrates is bad for health, but this could also have caused people to avoid other types of carbohydrates that are actually high in fiber (such as whole grains, for example). When food choices focus on getting fiber, a person generally consumes fewer calories, chooses foods with a lower glycemic index, consumes more whole foods such as fruits and vegetables (and, therefore, more nutrients), and consumes less processed foods. This is, in large part, how epidemiological studies show that a diet rich in fiber from whole foods is strongly associated with a lower risk of heart attack, stroke and cardiovascular disease.

Increasing your daily fiber intake is one of the easiest ways to simultaneously improve your overall and digestive health. Taking fiber supplements can be an effective way to do this without having to make drastic changes to your diet or lifestyle.