How Eating Fiber Can Change Your Life

Dietary Fiber is found in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes; however, fiber is not found in fruit or vegetable juices nor is it found in meat. There are two types of fiber: soluble and insoluble.  Fiber provides a range of benefits including helping to control blood sugar levels, lowering cholesterol levels, maintaining healthy gut health, normalizing bowel movements and helping you to lose weight. 

Soluble fiber gets its name because it can dissolve in water: aka water soluble. Soluble fiber slows down gastric emptying so it can make you feel fuller, longer, and can help with weight loss. It also allows your body more time to digest your foods, since it moves through your body slowly, thus your body is able to extract as much nutrients as possible as food slowly passes through your Gi tract. Soluble fiber does not contribute to blood sugar spikes since it is not well absorbed. 

Insoluble fiber does not dissolve in water, this is beneficial for the body since it can ferment and provide your body with beneficial prebiotics which have been shown to improve intestinal health.  Insoluble fiber helps you to pass stools more quickly and helps to prevent things such as hemorrhoids and constipation. This type of fiber is mostly found in the skins of fruit and in whole grains. 

So how much fiber do you need? The institute of medicine recommends men 50 or younger to consume 38 grams of fiber per day while men 51 and older should consume around 30 grams per day.   Women age 50 or younger should consume 25 grams of fiber per day while women age 51 or older should consume 21 grams per day. 

Since fiber is like a sponge in the body, make sure to consume plenty of water (~ 2 liters a day for the average adult)so that you do not experience constipation. 

So, how can you get more fiber into your day? Eat more whole foods. Here are some fiber rich foods 

1 apple (with skin)  4.5 grams fiber

1 cup oatmeal 4 grams fiber

1 cup black beans 15 grams

1 avocado 10 grams

1 cup berries 8 grams

1 banana 3 grams

20 almonds 3 grams

1 medium carrot 2 grams

1 cup split peas 16 grams

1 cup whole wheat spaghetti 6.3 grams

1 cup brown rice 3.5 grams

2 slices whole wheat toast 4 grams

 

By eating more fiber you can begin to experience regular bowel movements, more sustained energy, and fat loss. If you are finding yourself becoming gassy or bloated from eating fibrous foods, then you may need to work with a dietitian to figure out which foods work best for you. 

Potato Paradise

Who doesn't love potatoes? Potatoes are one of the most underrated starchy vegetables. They are full of vitamin C, vitamin B6, potassium, copper, manganese and many other vitamins and minerals. The nutrients in potatoes help to build your cells, protect your cardiovascular system and play numerous roles in brain cell and nervous system activity. Potatoes have gained a bad reputation because they're often found in the form of French Fries or lathered in unhealthy ingredients when cooked. But fear not, I'm here to make potatoes cool again!  Alright enough talking, heres the recipe :)

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Ingredients: 

2 pounds small potatoes 

2 onions 

1 tablespoon minced garlic

1 bunch (handful) of cilantro

10 or so leaves of Basil

1-2 tablespoons oregano

1/2 cup chopped chives

1-2 sweet peppers roasted

1 pinch salt

optional: pinch of cayenne pepper (Arriba!)

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  1. Wash and prepare potatoes. Cut off any undesirable pieces and cut the potatoes to about the size of 2 cubes (usually by halving each one). 
  2. Heat olive oil in a 2 inch deep (minimum) pan. When heated to frying temperature, add potatoes. I like to add them face down first. Once they are golden brown on the bottoms (~7 minutes), flip the potatoes over and cook the other side. 
  3. Once potatoes are cooked, remove from oil and set into medium bowl.  Check to see if cooked by removing one and cutting it open, it should be crisp on the outside and soft on the inside. Set aside.
  4. Roast the red pepper on an open flame or burner, rotating occasionally, until all the skin is blackened. Remove the burnt skin to reveal the sweet flesh beneath. Remove flesh from stem and chop to small pieces. Set aside.
  5. Chop the onions and chives into small pieces. Mince the garlic. Chop the cilantro and basil and mix with garlic, onions, chives, and oregano. 
  6. Mix all ingredients together in large bowl. Lightly salt (1 tsp) 

Roasting the peppers on the open flame helps to make the pepper sweeter and more tasty!

 I love all these old pots and cutting boards.... going to stock up on a few before I leave Colombia.

 I love all these old pots and cutting boards.... going to stock up on a few before I leave Colombia.

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I like to eat these potatoes as a dish by itself or as a side to your favorite protein whether it be beans, eggs, chicken or steak. Whatever floats your boat! 

Happy cooking and have a blessed day!

Ps. Share this recipe with your friends, comment, and like :-)

 

Every Day is a New Opportunity

Wake up and see each day as another chance to start, to progress, to move forward. We cannot let the weight  of our pasts pull us down, instead we must use it to push us forward. Our minds are so powerful that it can create false realities; it can make us believe something exists which does not. And to be fair, our minds also have the potential to create new and amazing realities; our minds can make our dreams come true. The difference between someone who does and who doesn't is simply action or no action. Action is a choice. We can choose to act and do something different, this is the freedom we have been granted! Take advantage of it. -SEE EACH DAY AS A BLESSING. 

In order to carry a positive action we must develop here a positive vision
— Dalai Lama