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Your blood glucose may rise and then rapidly fall if you eat a high-carbohydrate meal with very little fiber. Because fiber is like a sponge, absorbing and releasing glucose, a high-fiber meal will slow down these rapid changes and prevent the "highs and lows."
High-fiber foods are low in fat and provide essential nutrients, such as vitamins C, B6, A, E, folate, and carotenoids. The National Institutes of Health recommends that adults eat 20-35 grams of fiber per day. It can be found in many different types of plant foods, including whole-grain breads and cereals, fruits and vegetables, and many types of beans. The best way to add fiber to your diet is to slowly slip in more high-fiber foods. Here are some tips to get you started:
- Add grated carrots, zucchini, or celery to your usual meals.
- Use a handful of rolled oats to top casseroles such as macaroni and cheese.
- Add garbanzo beans or kidney beans to rice dishes.
- When baking cakes or cookies, use oat flour for half the flour in the recipe and oat bran or oatmeal for the other half to provide extra flavor and crunch.
Last updated: July 2006
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