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7 Seriously Delicious High-Fiber Foods

By Vicki Wolfhart
|
May 11, 2024
Courtesy of Feasting at Home

Fiber has been getting a ton of attention lately, and with good reason: It’s crucial for good health. It’s key to having a healthy digestive system, and it helps fight heart disease and some cancers, too. But even with all we know about how important fiber is, only about 7% of Americans actually get enough. One way to get more is to focus on eating high-fiber foods.

This idea may conjure up images of dry, cardboard-like fiber cereal, but the truth is, there are tons of colorful, super-tasty foods that also bring a healthy amount of fiber. Once you know how many delicious choices you have, you’ll find that it’s easier to up your intake than you might have thought.

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You asked: How much fiber per day do I need?

According to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, we need abut 14 grams of fiber per 1,000 calories per day. So, for women, that’s about 25 grams of fiber per day, and roughly 38 grams for men. You may think you’re getting enough fiber if you eat a reasonably healthy diet, but remember that less than 10% of the population is getting there. 

Here are some simple and delicious ways to boost your daily fiber.

1. Chia seeds

OK, maybe they’re not delicious on their own, but you can easily add chia seeds to other delicious foods and instantly boost your fiber. Toss a spoonful into smoothies or yogurt, meal-prep some pudding, add to your oatmeal — 3 tablespoons have 10 grams of fiber, one-third of your daily amount. Bonus: Chia seeds also have heart-healthy omega 3 fatty acids and protein.

2. Skin-on veggies and fruits

The majority of the fiber in many fruits and vegetables is in the skin, so the next time you’re making dinner, save yourself a job and leave the peeler in the drawer.

For example, a medium potato with the skin has 2 grams of fiber, but only 1 when you peel it. Leave the skin on kiwi to get 50% more fiber (pro tip: Scrub the fuzzy top layer off brown-skinned kiwis, or buy the gold ones, which have thinner skins). Leave the peel on apples when making a crisp. Scrub carrots instead of peeling before chopping or shredding.

Related: 5 Simple Ways to Eat More Healthy Vegetables at Lunch

3. Dark chocolate

Not that you need more of an excuse to indulge in chocolate, but: There are 3 grams of fiber in 1 ounce of dark chocolate made from 70-85% cocoa.

Plus, studies suggest that dark chocolate has a positive effect on blood pressure, and may reduce inflammation. 

Also, 1 tablespoon of unsweetened cocoa has nearly 2 grams of fiber, so add it to your smoothies or baked goods, or make yourself some hot cocoa to sip.

4. Almond flour

Just 1/4 cup of almond flour has 3 grams of fiber (and 6 grams of protein), so add some to your baked goods, pancakes, even meatballs (in place of breadcrumbs).

Another benefit of almond flour is that it’s gluten free. Plus, due to the high fat content of almonds, almond flour gives a lovely, moist finish when used in baking, more so than some other kinds of gluten-free flour.

If you want to try baking with almond flour, follow recipes that call for it, rather than substituting it for regular flour. It works differently than wheat flour and others, so you’ll have more success with recipes that were developed with it.

5. Coleslaw

This crunchy side dish is a must at barbecues, and it also brings the fiber. Cabbage on its own has 2 grams of fiber per cup (shredded), and then you can toss in tons of other high-fiber ingredients, like shredded carrot (3 grams per cup), nuts and/or seeds, or apple.

And you don’t have to wait for that cookout invite: Coleslaw lasts in the fridge for a few days, so meal prep a batch and grab it for quick side dishes to go with any protein. You can even start with packaged coleslaw mix to save yourself from all that shredding.

Related: 10 Delicious, Easy Coleslaw Recipes to Crunch On

6. Avocados

Avocados are a fantastic source of fiber, with nearly 7 grams of fiber per 100 grams (around half an avocado, depending on how big it is). 

While avocados are delicious on toast or in a salad, they also make a beautiful, creamy addition to ice creams, puddings, and other desserts. Try one of these avocado dessert recipes to sneak in some fiber while you satisfy your sweet tooth.

7. Popcorn

Popcorn is a whole grain, with 1 gram of fiber per cup, so you can enjoy it by the handful, either plain or dressed up. There are also some other fun ways to use it:

Read next: RD-Approved High Fiber Snacks for a Healthy Gut

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