High Fiber Foods and How to Increase Fiber Intake

Patricia Bannan dietitian with high fiber bread balancing on her head in the kitchen

I’m delighted to have partnered with Tropicana on this blog post. All opinions are my own.

Learn how to easily increase the amount of high fiber foods in your diet, and why it’s important for your overall health.

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, adults in the United States consume about half of the recommended intake for fiber. Fiber plays an important role in weight management, heart health, blood sugar regulation, and proper digestion. Here are some easy ways to make sure you are getting enough.

What is Fiber?

Dietary fiber is a type of carbohydrate found in plant-based foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts, and seeds, that cannot be digested or absorbed by the body. Fiber is commonly broken down into two types, soluble and insoluble.

Soluble fiber dissolves in water, making a gel-like substance that passes through the digestive system. Soluble fiber has been shown to help lower cholesterol levels in the body, which can help reduce the risk of heart disease. You can find soluble fiber in foods such as oats, beans, peas, apples, and citrus fruits.

Insoluble fiber does not dissolve in water and adds bulk to help the movement of material through the digestive system. This can help prevent constipation or struggles with bowel movements. Insoluble fiber can be found in foods like whole grains, nuts, legumes, cauliflower, and potatoes

Looking for even more ways to help improve your digestion? Try these 4 other simple practices.

How to Get More Fiber in Your Diet

Knowing what fiber is, and why it is important, is one thing but knowing how to get more of it in your diet is another. Women should aim for 25 grams of fiber per day, while men should aim for 38 grams per day, or 14 grams for every 1,000 calories.

Here are some easy ways to get more fiber in your day:

  • Snack on fruit — Whole fruits like apples, oranges, peaches, and bananas are convenient and portable, making them an easy, fiber-rich snack option.
  • Do a grain swap — Swap out white bread, pasta, and white rice with 100% whole-grain or whole-wheat options. Simply swapping out your usual pasta or bread for a whole grain variety can double the fiber in your meal.
  • Include a fruit or vegetable at every meal — Making it a priority to have at least one serving of fruits or vegetables at every meal assures you are increasing your fiber intake.
  • Level up your baked goods — Using half whole wheat flour, adding in wheat germ, or sprinkling in ground flax seeds is an easy way to boost the fiber and nutrients in your baked goods or desserts.
  • Stock your freezer — Keep your freezer stocked with frozen berries, microwavable quinoa, and frozen veggies so you always have quick fiber-rich options to add to whatever you are cooking.
  • Enjoy Tropicana Essentials Fiber — Switching out your usual beverage for a higher-fiber option like Tropicana Essentials Fiber, made with 100% fruit juice, no added sugar, no artificial flavors, and 4 grams of fiber in every eight-ounce serving, can make getting in more fiber delicious and effortless.

tropicana essentials fiber strawberry banana drink with bowl of apricot and asparagus stalksHigh Fiber Foods to Add to Your Meals

Below are some suggestions of plant-based foods, with how much fiber you can find in each serving.

FOOD

SERVING SIZE

GRAMS OF FIBER

Chia seeds

1 ounce (~2 tablespoons)

10

Acorn squash

1 cup, cooked

9

Lentils

½ cup, cooked

8

Split peas

½ cup cooked

8

Artichoke

1 medium, cooked

7

Navy or white beans

½ cup, cooked

7

Chickpeas

1/2 cup, cooked

6

Kidney Beans

1/2 cup, cooked

6

Pear

1 medium

6

Whole-wheat spaghetti

1 cup, cooked

6

Avocado

1/2 medium California

5

Collard greens

1 cup, cooked

5

Tropicana Essentials® Apple Cherry Fiber or Strawberry Banana Fiber 

8 ounces

4

Apple

1 medium (3″ diameter)

4

Beets

1 cup, raw

4

Blackberries

1/2 cup fresh

4

Oats

1/2 cup, uncooked

4

Raspberries

½ cup fresh

4

Sweet potato

1 medium, with both flesh and skin

4

Almonds

1 ounce, or 22 almonds

3

Wheat bran

2 tablespoons

3

Orange

1  medium

3

Sweet cherries

1 cup fresh, without pits

3

Banana

1 medium fresh

3

Nectarine

1 medium, fresh

2

Asparagus

½ cup, cooked

2

Source: USDA FoodData Central

What are your favorite ways to add fiber to your diet? Leave a message below, I’d love to hear!