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Fiber Can Help Fight Diabetes!

Updated on October 17, 2009

The number of newly diagnosed cases of Type 2 diabetes is rising at an alarming rate. Some health care professionals attribute this in part to excess weight resulting from a number of factors including a poor diet which features an abundance of calories, inadequate intake of fiber, and a lack of exercise.

If diabetes threatens to curtail your plans for a longer and healthy life, you can do something about it. Some studies have shown that fiber not only can assist with diabetes management but with regard to the Type 2 variety, it can help to deter its onset!

If your fiber intake is less than 25 grams daily, gradually increase your dietary sources to reach the recommended 25-35 grams range. This week commit yourself to trying (and incorporating) one new fiber source into your daily intake. Keep in mind that a fiber intake of 25-35 grams is a general recommendation for healthy individuals.

An easy way to increase your fiber intake is to start each day with a bowl of oatmeal topped with fruit and nuts. Each 1/2 cup of dry oats provides 4 grams of fiber with 2 tablespoons of walnuts adding 2 more grams. Fruit, depending on the variety and amount, can enhance fiber intake by another 1-3 grams. As a comparison, one cup of corn flakes or crispy rice cereal provides less than 1 gram of fiber.

Not an oatmeal lover? Look for other opportunities during your day to include whole grains, legumes, fruit, vegetables, and nuts. Depending on the quantity of bread you eat in a day, whole grain bread can be a significant source of fiber in your diet. Fiber ranges from less than 1 gram in many white varieties to 5 grams or more in some whole grain varieties. Don't make the mistake of assuming that all breads claiming to be whole grain on the label or appear brownish in color are fiber rich. Confirm the fiber content on the label before you purchase it.

Lunch can make a significant contribution to your fiber intake. If you are a sandwich person, add a cup of hearty soup with vegetables, barley or kidney beans, and you're upping that fiber by a few more notches. If you prefer to partake of the salad bar, additional fiber opportunities abound such as fresh vegetables and legumes, including garbanzo, kidney, and black beans, sunflower seeds, and brown and wild rice.

Besides, let me fill you in on a little secret. Humans have eaten carrot and celery sticks and survived! Yes, I know it's very hard to believe but rabbit food can be consumed by homo sapiens without causing immediate death. Many people in the United States and especially in the United Kingdom seem to believe that raw vegetables are only fit for livestock, but when you dip a nice, cold, crisp carrot stick into a delectable aioli dip, or spread some gorgonzola or blue stilton onto a celery shaft and chew down, you might not only find that you can eat it, but it's actually quite delicious. Not to mention a huge contributor to your daily fiber intake!

Continued In: Fiber Can Help Fight Diabetes! Part II

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