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Vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and legumes are high fiber foods

People who eat the standard American diet are often searching for high fiber foods. Their doctor tells them that high fiber foods will help their obesity, constipation, or high cholesterol. The big question is: why do so many people have a fiber shortage?















  • Because many of the foods they eat contain no fiber at all. Fiber is a structural part of all plants. Animal foods like meat, poultry, fish, eggs, and dairy products contain no fiber

  • The food industry removes much of the fiber from plant foods. They remove the fiber from whole grains to make white flour, white pasta, and white rice. They remove the fiber from fruit to make fruit juice. They remove the fiber from sugar beets to make sugar. They remove the fiber from soybeans, peanuts, olives, and corn to make oil.

For the best weight loss results, don't eat or drink animal foods. And don't eat or drink plant foods that are missing their fiber. Here are the different types of fiber that you find in a high fiber diet, and how they help with weight loss. 


Are any processed foods OK?

green beans frozen
  • Frozen fruits and vegetables are fine. They still contain all of their fiber.
  • Canned vegetables and beans can be OK, although they may contain other unhealthy ingredients, like salt, sugar, or chemical additives. 

  • Some canned fruits are good. Others have been peeled, which removes fiber. Buy canned fruits packed in juice, not syrup.

  • Dried fruits are high fiber foods. However, they are not good weight loss foods. Fiber works best for weight loss when it is bound up with water in a food. It is easy to eat a lot of calories from dried apples. It takes much more time and energy to eat a fresh apple. And the fresh apple satisfies us more. 

  • Cereals like Grape-Nuts and Shredded Wheat are made of whole wheat flour and have no added fat. Like whole wheat bread or bagels, they are decent breakfast choices when we are traveling or we are in a hurry. But they are not ideal for weight loss. Cooked whole grains are much better.

  • There is no reason to buy bran cereal. Bran is not a whole food. Food companies remove the bran from whole grains like wheat, oats, and corn. They add some other ingredients to create processed breakfast cereals. 

    Bran cereals do not contain the whole grain nutrients in the right proportions. It is not natural to eat bran cereal for breakfast and low or no-fiber foods the rest of the day. Instead, eat high fiber whole plant foods for every meal.

  • To understand why dried fruit, packaged cereals and breads may hinder weight loss, see this important information on the calorie content of foods.


Having problems with a high fiber diet?

raspberries
People who increase the fiber content of their diets rapidly may experience some side effects. The most common one is intestinal gas.

This can be embarrassing but try to look on the bright side: a high fiber diet keeps you healthy and you lose weight! You will adjust to the fiber intake with time. Here are a few solutions to the temporary gas problem:

  • Drink plenty of water. This helps the fiber and stool move through the intestines easily.

  • Don't eat too many beans when you begin this diet. Eat small amounts at first and give your body time to adjust to them. Soak your beans for 8 hours before you cook them. Drain the soaking water and rinse the beans, then cook them in fresh water.
    peppermint oil

  • Drink a glass of water containing 2 or 3 drops of peppermint oil before your meals. You can find peppermint oil in natural food stores.

  • Your health food store may carry a vegan product called Bean-zyme that helps with gas. The product Beano is not a vegan product.
  • Many people are sensitive to gluten and they don't know it. Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, rye, triticale, spelt, and some types of oats. You may need to eliminate gluten from your diet.

A healthy vegan diet is full of high fiber foods. Eat a variety of unprocessed whole plant foods daily. You will not have to count fiber grams or take fiber supplements.

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