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Tips for Adding High Fiber Foods to Your Cholesterol-Lowering Diet

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Updated December 19, 2012

Fiber has a variety of healthy benefits -- including lowering your cholesterol. So, if you aren’t consuming enough fiber, you may want to begin supplementing your diet to get the cholesterol-lowering benefits that fiber can offer you.

There are two types of fiber -- soluble fiber and insoluble fiber. While insoluble fiber has not been shown to lower cholesterol, soluble fiber has the ability to especially lower your LDL, or “bad” cholesterol. In fact, The National Cholesterol Education Program recommends that you should consume between 10 to 25 grams of soluble fiber each day.

If you are not getting enough fiber each day, there are many easy ways to add it to your diet. Here are just a few diet tips for adding fiber to your healthy diet:

  • Make sure that you are including plenty of fruits and vegetables in your diet. Both can be eaten alone or added to your favorite dishes. These contain both soluble and insoluble fiber, which can help to slightly lower your cholesterol, improve your digestive health, and add plenty of nutrients to your diet.

  • Don’t be tempted to eat chips and cookies during a snack break. Instead, snack on veggies or nuts, which are high-fiber foods.

  • Replace white bread with wheat bread. Making this simple switch can lower the amount of sugar you consume in a meal and increase your fiber intake.

  • Leave the peels on your favorite fruits and vegetables. While you may be tempted to cut away the peel, the peel itself contains a lot of fiber, too.

  • Finding yourself grasping for that doughnut in the morning? Instead, why don’t you make a bowl of oatmeal, add fruit to your cereal, or reach for a bran muffin instead. All of these foods can add a little bit of fiber to your diet.
Wondering if your favorite foods have a lot of fiber in them? You can check out the Nutritional Facts food labels located on the back of food packages. Fiber content will be usually listed under the Total Carbohydrates category. Alternatively, you can access food label information right here on About.com by visiting Calorie Count and plugging a food right into its search box.

Source:

Rolfes SR, Whitney E. Understanding Nutrition, 3rd ed 2005.

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