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RD-Approved High Fiber Snacks for a Healthy Gut

March 19, 2024

Fiber used to be one of those things our grandparents focused on — but these days, it’s one of the darlings of the health world. Now that we know that gut health affects everything from digestion, to mood, immunity, and energy, we’re all more interested in it, and one of the keys is getting plenty of fiber. Making sure to choose high fiber snacks is one important step toward meeting your daily fiber goals.

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Why fiber matters

Fiber benefits the gut microbiome because it feeds the good bacteria that populate it. Along with benefitting gut health, eating enough fiber is also associated with a reduced risk of heart disease, diabetes, stroke, and several types of cancer. 

The American Heart Association Eating Plan recommends that adults get 25 to 30 grams of fiber per day — and that’s from food, not fiber supplements. Research indicates that only about 5% of people get that much; the average is around 15 to 16 grams. 

Why choose high fiber snacks?

“As a registered dietitian, I recommend eating high fiber snacks for a few reasons,” says Atlanta-based dietitian Megan Huff. “One, fiber will keep you fuller for longer, as it takes longer to digest. Two, snacks containing fiber will help to prevent spikes in your blood sugar by slowing the absorption of carbohydrates.” Plus, snacking on fiber-rich foods can help you reach that daily recommendation.

What qualifies as a high fiber snack?

“Ideally, a snack should have [at least] 3 grams of fiber per serving,” Huff says. That’s a good place to start if you’re not accustomed to eating much fiber. Eating too much at one sitting can cause bloating, gas, and other symptoms, especially if you’re not used to it. Breaking up your fiber intake into doses throughout the day is helpful; then you can increase the amount gradually. Start with a snack with 3 grams of fiber and build from there.

If you’re already on your way toward reaching your fiber goals and eating plenty of foods like vegetables, fruit, nuts and seeds, and legumes without any digestive issues, feel free to grab a snack with more than 3 grams.

High fiber snacks to try

Huff recommends these high fiber snacks:

  • Aloha protein bars: “Each bar contains 10 grams of fiber, 14 grams of protein, and only 5 grams of sugar,” Huff says. “I love the softer, chewier texture, and these bars don’t taste chalky like the usual protein bar. They’re the perfect post-workout or afternoon snack. I eat one almost every day.”
  • Raspberries: “One cup of raspberries packs in 8 grams of fiber,” Huff notes. “I love eating raspberries alone or atop Greek yogurt, overnight oats, and chia seed pudding.” 
  • Biena Roasted Chickpeas: “A 1-ounce serving contains 6 grams of fiber and 6 grams of plant-based protein,” she says. “These roasted chickpeas are a great crunchy and savory snack, and they come in a variety of flavors.” You can also roast chickpeas yourself; an air fryer is helpful, but the oven works well, too.

Here are some other high fiber snacks to try:

  • Popcorn: With just over 3 grams of fiber in 3 cups, popcorn is a good snack for people who like a higher volume of food.
  • Health Warrior Chia Bars: Chia pudding is great, but not so easy to take on the go. These snacks give you the fiber and nutrients of chia seeds in a convenient bar. In flavors like Mixed Berry, Coconut, Dark Chocolate, and Caramel Sea Salt, each with 5 grams of fiber and only 3 grams of sugar, they’re a tasty way to get your fiber. (They’re great for kids, too.)
  • Apple with nut butter: This snack is classic for a reason. It’s perfect for a sweet craving, it’s crunchy and creamy, and it’s loaded with fiber and nutrients. A medium apple with 2 tablespoons of almond butter has nearly 8 grams of fiber.

Read next: 6 High-Fiber Breakfast Stars That Aren’t Oatmeal

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