December 11


Easy ways to increase your fibre intake

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Fibre is a rock star. It can reduce the risk of diseases such as diabetes and heart disease plus can lower cholesterol. It helps your body regulate its sugar intake and can help you feel fuller for longer. And yet, most of us in the Western world only eat about half of the recommended 25 to 30g of fibre a day.


Chances are you don't have to find fibre in new places, but rather just eat more fibre-rich foods that you already know and love. Most whole grains, fruits, legumes and vegetables are good sources.

Here are some of your best bets:

Raspberries (8g fibre per cup)

Raspberries provide 8g fibre per cup

Yep, you read that correctly. These sweet, red berries pack 8 grams of fibre per cup. If fresh berries are too much of a splurge on a regular basis, look for frozen. You can defrost raspberries and mix into yoghurt, smoothies and smoothie bowls.

Pears (5.5g fibre per cup)

Pears provide 5.5g fibre per cup

A medium pear has 5.5 grams of fibre. That's more than an apple (4.5g), banana (3g) or orange (3g). Be sure to keep the skin intact. That's where much of the fibre lives in fruits like apples and pears.

Barley (10g per cup)

Barley provides 10g fibre per cup once cooked

Be sure to seek out hulled barley, which has the germ and bran of this ancient grain intact. A cup of uncooked, hulled barley contains an impressive 31 grams, which translates into about 10g per cup of cooked barley. Use it as the base for a veggie-packed grain salad, or swap it for rice in your favourite dish.

Popcorn (1.5g per cup)

Popcorn graphic

Popcorn sometimes gets a bad rap. It's a whole grain with 1.5 grams of fibre per cup. Skip the cinema treatment (laden with butter and salt) and instead embrace air-popped popcorn that can be seasoned with your favourite spice mix, fresh herbs, a few dashes of Worcestershire sauce or a light sprinkle of grated cheese to enjoy as a snack any time of the day.

Lentils (15g fibre per cup)

Lentils are a rich source of fibre, providing 15g per cupful

These legumes come in a range of different colours and are tasty hot or  cold. You can even reheat lentils into new creations. One cup of cooked lentils has 15g of fibre. In other words, that's half of your recommended daily intake.

Avocados (10g fibre per cup)

Avacado graphic

Healthy fats? Check. Potassium? Check. Vitamins B6 and C? Check and check. Avocados are cast as a superfood for a reason. Besides a range of other nutrients, these green fruits pack 10g of fibre per cup. This, along with the fat content, can help you to feel full.

About the author

Paul Stokes

Paul Stokes BSc (Hons) is a Certified Personal Trainer, Accredited Sports Nutritionist, qualified Exercise to Music Instructor, Precision Nutrition coach, Massage Therapist and teaches 8 of the Les Mills Group Exercise programs.

He currently works in the Oil & Gas industry as a Wellness Coach, imparting his vast knowledge and experience to improve the quality of life of several hundred offshore workers.

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