““Fiber helps balance blood sugar levels,” says dietitian Amy Shapiro, MS, RD, CDN of New York. “Fiber helps with digestion, regularity and elimination. Helps remove excess hormones from the body and can help lower cholesterol levels. The [also] helps manage hunger levels, prevent cravings and maintain energy levels “.
In addition, according to Christine Byrne, MPH, RD, LDN, a dietitian based in Raleigh, North Carolina, some fermentable fiber or prebiotics provide a healthy gut microbiome as they supply prebiotics to the gut.
In this way, fiber is something like a miracle for the body. The problem is, given the many unhealthy (and less healthy) choices on the market, high-fiber diets are not the norm. This is because fiber is found in plant foods and Shapiro says a diet rich in fiber is the one that prioritizes whole foods over processed foods. So, since not everyone has the desire to eat plant foods rich in fiber, there are fiber supplements to help relieve relaxation.
Keep reading to find out more about the different types of fiber supplements on the market.
Different types of fiber supplements
When you head to your local drugstore and walk down the aisle, you will come across a variety of different fiber supplements. But do not be fooled. Byrne says most fiber supplements on the market are similar, they just come in different groups. “Fiber supplements for children may have added aromas and a smaller portion size,” he explains. “Fiber supplements commercially available to pregnant women are made from psyllium bark, an insoluble fiber that is particularly useful in preventing constipation.”
Nature Made Wellness Ambassador Patricia Bannan, MS, RDN, says another key difference between fiber supplements is that some focus solely on meeting nutritional recommendations for the nutrient, while others have targeted goals. “[Some fiber supplements] “It can be used to promote good gut bacteria.” “Other products contain different types of fiber to help manage specific bowel health-related symptoms (constipation, diarrhea, etc.).”
Watch the video for more on the importance of gut health:
Overall, the variation of the fiber supplement depends on the type of fiber used and the ingredients used in the product. Bannan says fiber can be categorized as soluble or insoluble, which can not be assimilated or absorbed by the body. “Soluble fiber dissolves in water, forming a gel-like substance that passes through the digestive system,” he explains, noting that it has been shown to help lower cholesterol levels in the body, which can help reduce the risk of heart attack. diseases. “Insoluble fiber does not dissolve in water and adds volume to help move material through the digestive system. “This can help prevent constipation or fight with bowel movements.”
The best fiber supplements
The best fiber supplements, like so many things, are subjective. What is ideal for one person may be ineffective for another. It is important to talk to your doctor or personal dietitian before starting a fiber supplement regimen. With that in mind, below you will find some of the best fiber supplements based on various common key factors, according to registered dietitians.
The best prebiotic fiber supplement for adults
Nature Made Fiber 6 G Gummies – $ 20.00
“These gums are an excellent source of inulin [prebiotic] “Fiber that supports the growth of good gut bacteria,” says Bannan. “They provide 6 grams of dietary fiber (6 grams of soluble fiber) for a serving of 3 chewing gums.”
The best fiber supplement for constipation
Organic India Psyllium Herbal Powder – $ 16.00
“If you’re really struggling with constipation, which is common especially in the elderly and in pregnancy, then an insoluble fiber supplement may be best,” says Byrne. “This is made from flea bark, which contains both soluble and insoluble fiber to help you stay regular.”
(FYI: Although fiber supplements can help alleviate the effects of constipation, Bannan reminds us that many types of fiber interact differently in the gut. That being said, it is advisable to talk to your doctor and / or dietitian about determine what is best for you if you have gas, bloating and gastrointestinal symptoms are in focus.)
The best fiber supplement for children
Nature Made Kids First Fiber Gummies – $ 18.00
“These daily chewing gums taste good (available in natural fruit flavors) to help keep your kids’ digestive tract on track,” says Bannan. “They provide 4 grams of dietary fiber (4 grams of soluble fiber) for a portion of 2 gums.
The right daily portion of fiber
Again, it is subjective, it varies for men and women, children and adults. “According to current dietary guidelines, individuals should aim for 14 grams of fiber for every 1,000 calories,” says Bannan. In total, this means that women should aim for about 25 grams of fiber a day, while men should focus on 38 grams – something you may find to be much more than a portion of the fiber supplements listed above. .
“There is no maximum amount of fiber you should take as a supplement, but it is probably best not to take more than a quarter of your daily fiber supplements to prevent unpleasant side effects such as gas, bloating and indigestion,” says Byrne. . .
One last word about fiber supplements
As beneficial as fiber supplements may seem, all the experts we spoke to agree: It’s best to get most of your fiber from whole foods. “Supplements are not a substitute for nutritious foods, but rather a way to fill in any gaps in your diet that may be causing you problems,” says Byrne. “In fact, fiber supplements probably do not have the same benefits as fiber-rich foods, because supplements are lacking in all the other nutrients that these foods provide. [So, while] “Fiber supplements can help prevent constipation, but they probably will not lower your cholesterol or reduce the risk of chronic disease.”
Turning to the idea of eating plenty of fiber-rich foods (such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, seeds and nuts), Shapiiro says it’s important to improve your hydration as well. “When you increase fiber, you also need to increase fluid intake to help fiber work in your system,” he explains.
Watch the video for more tips from a dietitian on supplements:
Oh Hello! You look like someone who loves free workouts, discounts on modern wellness brands and exclusive Well + Good content. Join Well +, our online wellness community and unlock your rewards right away.
Our authors independently select these products. Making a purchase through our links can earn a Well + Good commission.