The benefits of fiber go well beyond keeping the digestive system performing well. The combination of the right fibers and plenty of water can keep wastes moving through the intestines and support overall health.
But let’s not overlook the role fiber plays in supporting the microbiome. The right fibers can help keep the microbiota in balance. There are about 500 different species of bacteria in the intestine, commonly known as the gut flora. Fiber nourishes the gut flora. Because our bodies don’t digest fiber before it reaches the large intestine, the job of digesting these fibers takes place in the gut flora, where the enzymes exist to support he process. The right fibers work as prebiotics when they nourish the good bacteria in the intestine.
There are two other clinical benefits fiber can provide:
Blood Sugar Control
The right fibers can help regulate insulin resistance and blood sugar levels. Because it’s not broken down by the body, fiber doesn’t increase blood glucose levels.
The Gut Brain Connection
A high fiber diet boosts metabolism. Metabolites fuel the liver, and may have an important role in endocrine functions. One of the key processes of protein metabolism in the liver is the deamination (removal) and transamination (transfer) of amino acids.
The Most Beneficial High Fibers
Along with the well-known sources, such as: Carrots, Raspberries, Oats, Seeds (such as flax and chia), there is a largely unknown world of more specialized sources. One is rice fiber. Another is coconut. Whatever the actual source of fiber, if it is of high quality, the microbiome will benefit. It’s an essential nutrient that provides a world of benefits.