Consuming a high-fiber diet is one of the best things that you can do for your health.
Even though fiber is readily available in many foods, most people don’t get enough, especially in North America.
There are so many benefits that come from consuming high fiber foods, and the great news is that fiber is one of the easiest things to incorporate into your diet!
What is Fiber?
Dietary fiber is the indigestible portion of food that is derived from plants. There are two main types of fiber – soluble fiber, and insoluble fiber.
Soluble fiber dissolves in water and helps the stomach to feel full. Insoluble fiber, on the other hand, doesn’t dissolve in water. Its purpose is to absorb water as it moves through the digestive system, which eases with the defecation process.
So basically, to sum it up: fiber helps to promote regular bowel movements and helps to clean out your colon. When you don’t get enough fiber, you can become bloated and constipated.
How Much Fiber Should You Consume?
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, it’s recommended to consume around 14 grams of fiber for every 1,000 calories that you consume.
Most women in the U.S. average around 1,800 calories a day, which would mean that they should aim for 26 grams of fiber daily.
The more calories you consume, the more fiber you should eat. If you are consuming the right foods (plants) it’s extremely easy to get enough fiber.
On the other hand, if you eat a heavily animal based diet (lots of meat, dairy, and eggs), it’s harder to consume enough fiber because animal products are devoid of this vital nutrient. Continue reading to find out some foods that are high in fiber.
The 18 Best High Fiber Foods
Raspberries are an incredible fruit high in antioxidants. They are full of vitamin C, vitamin A, and vitamin E.
They’re also very low in calories. Just one cup of raspberries contains 8 grams of fiber.
You can consume these delicious berries as a snack before work, in your morning cereal, or add them to a fruit smoothie.
Artichokes are full of healthy vitamins and minerals such as vitamins A, C, E, B, K, potassium, calcium, magnesium, and phosphorous.
One medium artichoke contains an impressive 10.3 grams of fiber. Artichokes taste amazing marinated, roasted, or in dips.
Why not try this recipe for Roasted Artichokes with Creamy Cashew Aioli?
Chickpeas are well known amongst vegans and vegetarians for their high protein content. They are also high in copper, folate, manganese, and omega fatty acids.
Did you know that in one cup of chickpeas, there are 8 grams of fiber? The most popular recipe that chickpeas are used for would definitely be hummus.
Chickpeas also taste delicious in curries. If you are looking for a delicious recipe that incorporates chickpeas, give this flavourful Chana Masala a try.
4. Chia Seeds
Chia seeds are definitely a superfood that you want to incorporate into your diet. They are full of omega fatty acids, protein, and calcium.
They are very high in fiber and many other essential nutrients that will protect your immune system and increase your energy.
Just a single tablespoon of chia seeds contains 5.5 grams of fiber! Chia seeds make a great addition to oatmeal and smoothies.
If you’ve never tried chia seed pudding before, here is a basic yet delicious chia seed pudding recipe to try out.
5. Split Peas
It doesn’t matter whether they are green or yellow, split peas are known for their high protein and fiber content. They are also especially abundant in thiamin, folate, and manganese.
One cup of cooked split peas contains a whopping 16.3 grams of fiber! One of the most delicious ways to consume this food would be in a split pea soup.
Here’s a great recipe for Smoky Split Pea Soup.
6. Brussels Sprouts
These are a cruciferous vegetable that often gets a bad rep from people. Sure, they don’t taste great raw, but there are so many other ways to eat them!
Brussels sprouts are rich in antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. They can even reduce the risk of some types of cancer.
They contain the perfect balance of soluble and insoluble fiber. One cup of brussels sprouts contain an impressive 7.6 grams of fiber.
Here is a simple and quick recipe for Baked Brussels Sprouts.
7. Asian Pears
Asian pears are different from the traditional green pear that most people are used to. These pears are typically yellow.
They contain high amounts of potassium, vitamin C, and vitamin K. They are known for their crisp and sweet taste.
If you eat one medium Asian pear with the skin on, it contains nearly 10 grams of fiber (9.9 grams to be exact).
They make the perfect snack when you need a quick pick-me-up between meals or a healthy and satisfying after-dinner dessert.
Okra is a vegetable that is mostly consumed in the Southern part of the United States. It is actually in the list of the top calcium-rich foods, so it’s great for your bones.
Okra is also high in riboflavin, thiamin, and zinc. One cup of okra contains 8.2 grams of fiber.
The most common way to consume this vegetable would be in soups and stews. The Food Network has a fantastic recipe for Okra, Onion and Tomato Stew.
9. Black Beans
Black beans are incredibly nutrient dense. They are a staple in the diet of many vegetarians and vegans, and they are extremely inexpensive too.
They are full of protein, thiamin, magnesium, and manganese. They also have a very high content of antioxidants which help to fight off free radicals in your body, reducing your risk of cancers.
One cup of cooked black beans contains 12.2 grams of fiber. There are many black bean stews you can make, or you can use them in burritos and tacos.
more: The Top Fiber Rich Foods
Did you know you can even use black beans in dessert? Here’s a recipe for some Healthy Black Bean Brownies, so you can increase your fiber intake while satisfying your sweet tooth at the same time!
Lentils are packed full of protein and iron, so they are especially great for people who have anemia. They are also rich in folate, manganese, and phosphorus.
One cup of cooked lentils contains 10.4 grams of fiber. There are many ways you can consume lentils, such as in a salad, as a spread, or in a soup.
Another way is in a lentil loaf. Here’s a recipe for the Ultimate Vegetable Lentil Loaf.
Turnips are definitely under-utilized in North America. They can be eaten raw or cooked. They are packed full of essential nutrients such as vitamin C, calcium, magnesium, and potassium.
1 cup of turnip contains 9.6 grams of fiber. If you are looking for a great recipe to include more turnips into your diet, try making these super simple Mashed Turnips with Nutmeg.
12. Lima Beans
Lima beans are a very dense source of iron. Just one serving contains 25% of the daily recommended iron intake for women.
They are also notably high in copper, manganese, folate, and protein. One cup of cooked lima beans contains 13.2 grams of fiber.
If you are looking for a good recipe that contains this healthy ingredient, try these Simple Garlicky Lima Beans.
This savory fruit is a high source of vitamin C, E, B6, folate, and potassium. Avocados are also an amazing source of healthy fats that promote nail and hair growth.
1 cup of sliced avocados contains 10.5 grams of fiber. Avocados are great on toast, in sandwiches, or as a dip for veggies (guacamole).
14. Dried Figs
Dried figs have the perfect balance of soluble and insoluble fiber. They are also very high in potassium, manganese, copper, and B6.
Figs have been known to lower blood pressure. In one cup of dried figs, there are 14.6 grams of fiber. Dried figs make a great snack, and they also make a sweet addition to oatmeal or cereal.
They’re also a good ingredient to add to granola bars, and you can even use dried figs to create a pie crust.
Peas are notably high in vitamin C, K, B6, thiamin, protein, and vitamin A. They contain many powerful antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties that support immune system wellness.
Frozen peas are readily available and quite cheap as well. One cup of cooked peas contains 8.6 grams of insoluble fiber.
You can simply steam a side of peas to go with your main meal such as mashed potatoes, or you can create a completely separate recipe out of them such as this Perfect Pea Purée to spread on toast or crackers.
16. Acorn Squash
Squash is the perfect food to eat in the fall. Pumpkin, butternut squash, and spaghetti squash all provide similar benefits as acorn squash. They are all full of vitamin C, potassium, and vitamin A.
On average, an acorn squash (or any of the other squash listed above) contains 9 grams of fiber per cup once they are baked.
A simple way to bake squash is just to cut them in half, de-seed them, and roast them in the oven with a bit of oil or butter, salt, and pepper. Here’s a Classic Baked Acorn Squash Recipe.
17. Flax Seeds
Flax seeds are a superfood. Although they are small, they are packed full of nutrients and antioxidants.
They reduce your bad cholesterol and contain lots of protein and omega-3 fatty acids. Whole flax seeds can be hard to digest, so make sure to grind them before consuming, or just buy pre-ground flax seeds.
One tablespoon of whole flax seeds contains 3 grams of fiber. You can add flax seeds to your cereal, oatmeal, or smoothies.
An apple a day really can keep the doctor away. Apples are a great source of nutrients such as vitamin C, and they can also lower your risk of getting colon cancer.
One medium sized apple (with the peel) has 4.4 grams of fiber. Apples make a great snack, kids love them, and they are relatively inexpensive. There are also so many varieties to choose from.
There you have it, 18 great high fiber choices. Incorporate as many as you can, because hands down eating more fiber is the most highly recommended action you can take to improve your overall health.
The 18 Best High Fiber Foods
- Chia Seeds
- Split Peas
- Brussels Sprouts
- Asian Pears
- Black Beans
- Lima Beans
- Dried Figs
- Acorn Squash
- Flax Seeds