Fiber is Your Friend!

Stay on Track with Healthy Holiday Goals Sponsored Content; Healthy Bites by Hy-Vee

If you’re looking for a way to lose weight or reduce your cholesterol, perhaps fiber should become your friend. Fiber is a complex carbohydrate; however, it does not give our body energy thus additional calories. Instead, fiber is simply eliminated from our body. The current dietary recommendation for fiber is 25-30 grams of fiber per day. Most Americans only get half this amount.

Fiber has been linked to many health benefits, including fighting heart disease, helping with weight management and improving blood sugar control and here is why:

Fighting Heart Disease – High intake of dietary fiber has been linked to a lower risk of heart disease. Soluble fiber acts like a sponge in the digestive tract, binding cholesterol and removing it from the body before it has a chance to be absorbed.

Weight Management – Fiber-rich foods may be beneficial in controlling weight by filling you up, not out. They are usually low in fat and calories and they add bulk to your diet to make you feel full longer.

Diabetes Control – People with type 2 diabetes can lower their blood sugars by significantly increasing their fiber intake. Fiber takes longer to digest and slows the release of sugar from food into the blood stream.

Tips to help you make fiber your friend:

Look for cereals containing at least 5 grams of fiber per serving. Kashi cereals are great high-fiber options.

Add fresh, frozen or canned vegetables to casseroles.

Top cereal with fresh, canned or dried fruit.

Fill up on fruits and vegetables for fiber and “5-a-day.”

Try La Tortilla brand tortillas!

Garden Fresh Salad

Serves 1

All you need

1 recipe Savory Whole Grain Croutons

1 medium carrot, peeled

½ (5 oz) package arugula

2 cups halved cherry tomatoes, divided

¼ cup Hy-Vee Select olive oil

¼ cup red wine vinegar

½ tsp Hy-Vee honey

1 cup sugar snap peas

1 cup broccoli florets

1 Hy-Vee large pasteurized egg, poached

½ oz thinly sliced Asiago cheese, optional

Savory Whole Grain Croutons:

All you need:

2 cups Hy-Vee Bakery whole grain bread loaf (cut in 3/4 -in cubes)

Nonstick olive oil spray

2 tsp no-salt seasoning blend

All you do

1. Prepare Savory Whole Grain Croutons; set aside.

2. Peel carrot into long, thin strips with a vegetable peeler. Wash and dry arugula in a salad spinner.

3. Blend 1 cup halved cherry tomatoes, olive oil, vinegar and honey in a blender until smooth to create a tomato vinaigrette.

Combine arugula, carrot, sugar snap peas, remaining tomatoes and broccoli in a large bowl. When ready to serve, drizzle salad with 2 Tbsp. tomato vinaigrette and toss to coat (save remaining vinaigrette for another use). Serve with 1/4 cup Savory Whole Grain Croutons and egg for topping. Serve cheese on the side, if desired. Save remaining croutons for another use.

Daily Values:

320% vitamin A 20% calcium 250% vitamin C 25% iron

Nutrition Facts per serving:

Calories: 290 Protein: 16g Carbohydrate: 31g Saturated Fat: 2.5g Cholesterol: 185mg Sodium: 250mg Dietary Fiber: 8g Sugars: 11g Fat: 13g Trans fats: 0g

The information is not intended as medical advice. Please consult a medical professional for individual advice.