Fiber has a bit of a stigma. When we think of fiber, we tend to think of Metamucil powder and the bowel habits of the elderly. I’ll go so far as to say that fiber is the most overlooked aspect of food. Protein has certainly had its time in the sun. Fat is now having a real moment. Carbohydrates are constantly embroiled in media controversy. But fiber is standing in the back, maintaining a stoic disposition, while the world underestimates its potential.
Dietary fiber is indigestible, but it exerts a powerful influence on our health, even though it never makes it past our digestive tract. Fiber is a carbohydrate, but it is distinguished by its indigestibility. Therefore, it doesn’t influence our blood sugar levels like “normal” carbohydrates do.
We have historically classified fiber as either soluble or insoluble. For the average person, I don’t think it’s very important to distinguish between the two classifications. Many foods contain both soluble and insoluble fiber anyway. The more interesting story is how fiber influences our health in ways that are not so obvious..Read More