Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Fun with Fiber

Lately, a diet rich in fiber has become all the rage- and with good reason! Incorporating a good source of fiber into every meal helps you stay full for longer because your body takes longer to break it down (in comparison to empty carbs). In light of the fiber-kick that America has finally embraced, I thought I'd share my top five fav sources of fiber outside of the traditional wholegrain sources that most people think of when they hear the word fiber (though I eat a VERY fiber-rich diet, so picking just five was hard!)

1. Berries- Anyone who knows me knows I don't eat any refined sugar, but I refuse to give up the natural sugars in fruit. Fortunately, berries have a lot less sugar than most others, and I happen to love them! And an added bonus, they are PACKED with fiber! Adding a big handful of berries to your breakfast is a great way to keep you full for hours!

2. Spinach- This leafy green packs an impressive amount of fiber, as well as providing a great source of vitamins to promote healthy skin and nails. Throw a handful on your lunch sandwich instead of the traditional romaine or iceberg you may currently add for a fiber-boost!

3. Squash- Okay, so Butternut Squash is probably my new favorite vegetable- not exaggerating. Roasted in the oven it gets soft and delicious, and almost resembles a sweet potato. And the best part? It packs the fiber! While Acorn squash have a greater amount of fiber, I personally like the Butternut variety better. (Recipes with this puppy to come later on!)

4. Brussels Sprouts- I know these poor ugly veggies have a terrible rep, but they are actually quite delicious. I am a HUGE fan of slicing them in half, skewering them, and throwing them on the grill, but they are just as good plainly steamed, and they are also full of fiber. They make a great side dish to some grilled meat, and are great dipped in hot sauce (call me crazy!)

5. Chia Seeds- Yes, I saved the strangest for last. These teeny seeds are basically straight fiber, and yes, I am talking about the same suckers they use to make Chia Pets! While I wouldn't eat a spoonful of Chia seeds, they add a nice crunch to Greek Yogurt in place of granola, they can add extra fiber to oatmeal for a more filling breakfast, and I decided the next time I make rice, I'm going to try adding some chia seeds. When you mix them with liquid, they develop a really interesting consistency, and honestly don't have much flavor, so they are a great sneaky boost of fiber for any meal! Pin It

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