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Why a high fibre diet is your secret weapon to healthy midlife




We read and hear a lot about high fiber diets and how positive they can be for lifestyle change, but haven’t done anything so far. With 82% of UK men (ages 55 to 64) and 70% of women (ages 65 to 74) either overweight or obese, now is the time to realign your efforts and take steps companies that protect your health in mid-life.

How do middle-aged adults adapt to a high-fiber diet?

The word fiber has all sorts of negative connotations. However, this nutrient is indeed one of the most fascinating with a wealth of high quality research to substantiate its many health benefits.

Given these proven health benefits, fiber could be the secret weapon every midlifer needs to know to future-proof their health.

What is fiber

Fiber is a term used to describe plant-based foods containing carbohydrates that (unlike sugar and starch) cannot be digested in the small intestine and so enter the large intestine or colon.

The two main categories of fiber include:

Soluble (Oats, peas, potatoes, beans, apples, citrus fruits, barley)

This type of fiber dissolves in your digestive system to form a gel-like substance that softens stool so it can pass more easily.

Insoluble (Wheat bran, whole grain, cereals, seeds, nuts)

Insoluble fiber does not dissolve in the intestine and therefore cannot be digested. This means that it will add bulk to your stool, thereby helping the food to move through your digestive system.

Despite these definitions, high fiber diets usually contain a combination of soluble and insoluble fiber, and the most important thing overall is to eat more.

How much fiber do we get with food?

UK guidelines recommend that we consume 30g of fiber daily, but the latest National Diet and Nutrition Survey (NDNA) found that only 12% of men and 6% of women get this, while the average intake is around a third of this recommendation is 2. The majority of the fiber in the UK diet comes from bread, pasta, rice, pizza and other grains, according to the NDNS, although most people choose white versus brown varieties of these foods.

High fiber foods reduce the incidence of heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and colon cancer by 16-24%

What Does Research Say About Fiber and Health?

A comprehensive study commissioned by the World Health Organization to help develop recommendations for optimal daily fiber intake was published in the Lancet a few years ago3.

This study found that consuming at least 25g to 29g of fiber per day resulted in a 15-30% reduction in all-cause and cardiovascular mortality when comparing those who ate the most with those who ate the least . Eating high-fiber foods also reduced the incidence of coronary artery disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and colon cancer by 16-24%. The same study also found that an increase in dietary fiber was linked to both lower body weight and lower cholesterol levels (major risk factors for heart disease), according to an analysis of available clinical studies.

According to the same study, it was shown that for every 8 grams of fiber per day, total deaths and the incidence of coronary artery disease, type 2 diabetes, and colon cancer decreased by 5-27%. While 25g to 29g per day was considered sufficient, the data from this survey suggested that higher intake might provide even greater protection.

Fiber and diabetes

The amount of fiber in meals has an impact on blood sugar levels, and being overweight is a known risk factor for type 2 diabetes. A large study published in the journal Diabetologia that included over 26,000 people found that whole and grain fiber intake was associated with a lower risk of type 2 diabetes, and that this association may be related to body weight is4.

Fiber and Gut Health

Certain fibers are considered prebiotics and include inulin and fructooligosaccharides, which help the bacteria in your intestines thrive. Prebiotics help the gut produce nutrients for colon cells like short chain fatty acids that promote a healthy digestive system. Foods that are high in this fiber include bananas, Jerusalem artichokes, oats, and raw onions and garlic. Resistant starches also act as prebiotics and are formed on foods like pasta rice and potatoes after they have been cooked and then cooled. These foods are not a good option for everyone as people with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) can benefit from avoiding such foods on the FODMAPS diet5.

Dietary Fiber and Digestion

It is well known that the key role of fiber in diet is to help maintain a healthy digestive system. Good digestion is the foundation of good health and it is in your gut that food is broken down, nutrients are taken in and released into the body, and where waste is removed.

Foods such as oats, barley, rye, beans, lentils, bananas, pears, apples, carrots, potatoes and gold linseed are particularly rich in soluble fiber. These fibers are made from parts of plants that absorb water, such as cell walls and gums, which keep your intestines hydrated and soften stool, which can be beneficial when you are constipated.

Wheat bran, dried fruits, corn, whole grain cereals, whole grain bread, nuts and seeds are particularly rich in insoluble fiber. These types of fiber are often referred to as fiber, which pass through the intestines without breaking down and aid digestion by providing volume and stool size.

high fiber diet for heart healthLowering cholesterol is helpful in reducing your risk of heart disease.

Fiber and Heart Health

A large review of 27 studies published in the American Journal of Epidemiology concluded that following a high-fiber diet is associated with lower risk of death, including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and cancer. This study also showed a 10% reduction in the risk of illness for every 10 g of fiber gain per day6.

Oats have been a major focus of heart health research because they contain a type of soluble fiber called beta-glucan. This type of fiber swells in the intestines to form a thick gel that binds excess cholesterol and cholesterol-like substances to prevent them from being absorbed and to clear them out of the body as waste7. Lowering cholesterol is helpful in reducing your risk of heart disease.

Fiber and cancer

The World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF) estimates that 45% of colorectal cancer cases could be prevented with high fiber diet, physical activity, and weight. Although no food alone can prevent you from developing colon cancer, the latest research has shown that a high-fiber diet of three servings per day (90 g) whole grains (brown rice, buckwheat, barley, bulgur, millet, oats) reduces the risk by seventeen percent8.

High fiber diet and weight loss

Fiber is believed to be helpful for weight loss as it replenishes food and promotes satiety by slowing the breakdown of carbohydrates in the intestines, which also has a moderating effect on blood sugar levels. It is also well known that maintaining a healthy weight can help reduce the risk of developing osteoarthritis10.

There is no doubt that a high-fiber diet has a positive impact on health, and many of the protective effects associated with this nutrient have been linked to major health areas affecting middle-aged adults. Increasing your fiber intake to meet the recommended daily allowance of 30g per day is a beneficial way to protect your health and can be achieved by simply changing the foods you eat. If you are struggling to get enough fiber in your diet, dietary supplements are available to increase your intake, such as: B. Healthspan Easyfibre Inulin, which also acts as a prebiotic in the intestine (£ 12.95 for 450 g container).


  1. Attitudes_Towards_Dietary_Fibre_on_a_Multicultural_Basis_A_Fibre_Study_Framework

You can find more content on high-fiber diets and tips on healthy eating on our nutrition channel.

About the author / Rob Hobson

Rob Hobson is a Registered Nutritionist and Healthspan Head of Nutrition. His new book ‘The Detox Kitchen Bible’ is available from Amazon or learn more from Healthspan.

Last modified: June 17, 2021

Written by Rob Hobson
6:46 pm

Whole Grain Pasta Nutrients

Kate Middleton diet plan: How exercise helps with ‘slender physique’ – expert claims



After marrying Prince William in 2011, Kate Middleton has been in the public spotlight for over a decade. Ten years, a royal wedding and three royal babies later, the Duchess shares the same enviable physique. Personal trainer Michael Brigo revealed how.

Michael began: “The Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton, has a lean and athletic physique that is most likely to be sculpted through resistance-based fitness training, which primarily focuses on strength training using bodyweight and weights.

“She is also an outdoor person and is known to enjoy running, skiing and tennis. It wouldn’t surprise me if she ran an average of 10km or more.”

Kate is rarely seen shying away from a workout or even a friendly athletic competition.

In fact, US Open champion Emma Raducanu described the Duchess’ forehand during a doubles match as “amazing”.

It seems the Queen will try any physical activity, whether it’s land sailing at St Andrews, archery lessons at The Way Youth Zone in Wolverhampton or Gaelic football with Irish children.

Also, let’s not forget how Duchess Catherine and Prince William met; The now legendary royal couple shared a love of sport at St Andrews University, where Kate was reportedly involved in rowing, swimming, hockey and tennis.

She also received a gold Duke of Edinburgh award in sixth form college, which is by no means a small achievement.

The challenge requires contestants to participate in “anything that requires a sustained level of energy and physical activity” for several months, suggesting the Duchess has always been athletic.

In a press release later shared by the Palace, Kate explained, “While getting my Gold Award was challenging at times, it’s one of my most memorable experiences from my childhood and I couldn’t recommend it more highly.”

One of Kate’s favorite exercises that anyone can try is the plank.

A royal insider reportedly explained: “There are three elements, the ground plank, the side plank and the prone skydiver, all positions that Kate can hold for 45 seconds or more and repeat each at least 10 times.”

As for her diet, Kate fans can rejoice, as Dr. Charlotte Norton, Medical Director of the Slimming Clinic, told that the Duchess’ main secret is simply having a balanced diet.

She explained: “Kate Middleton is very relatable (even down to her diet) and I think that’s one of the reasons the nation loves her.

“She’s known to be an avid cook and doesn’t shy away from pizza, pasta and curries, which we’re probably all fond of.”

READ MORE: Princess Beatrice’s engagement ring is different from Kate & Meghan’s

Those who want the Duchess’ figure would do well to include “protein (meat, fish, dairy, legumes and nuts), carbohydrates (whole grains), lipids (healthy oils), vitamins, minerals and water” in their diet. according to dr Norton.

Her favorite raw food dishes include gazpacho, sushi, ceviche and goji berries.

And while she’s not a vegetarian, the Queen also likes to stick to plant-based foods when she can.

During her and William’s royal tour of India, chef Raghu Deora, who cooked for the couple during their stay at the Taj Mahal Palace, revealed they enjoyed vegetable kebabs and lentil curry. Hi! reported.

Raghu explained, “It’s all vegetarian because I’ve been told that’s what they prefer.”

READ MORE: James Martin on why you should never put eggs in the fridge

dr Norton concluded: “I truly believe Kate’s secret is consistency.

“There hasn’t been a moment in history where she’s had a dramatic change in her appearance, not even post pregnancy, and I think that’s because it’s compatible with diet and exercise.”

However, in preparation for special occasions, the Duchess is reportedly taking extra precautions and following the Dukan Diet, which author Pierre Dukan says is “the real reason the French stay thin.”

To keep her slim ahead of her wedding in 2011, Kate reportedly tried the high-protein, low-carb diet.

This consists of four phases, Attack, Cruise, Consolidation and Stabilization, but ultimately encourages dieters to “eat as much as they want” out of 100 high-protein and plant-based foods.

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Whole Grain Pasta Nutrients

Diet and cervical cancer: What is the link?



Cervical cancer is one of the most common gynecological cancers. The American Cancer Society estimates that approximately 14,000 people in the United States will be diagnosed with cervical cancer in 2022.

Up to 99.7% of cervical cancer cases result from human papillomavirus (HPV) infection. This viral infection causes abnormal changes in the cervix, leading to the development of this form of cancer.

Doctors can diagnose cervical cancer during routine health exams like Pap smears and HPV tests. The condition is often asymptomatic.

In addition to regular Pap smears and HPV testing, there are three HPV vaccines that protect against some strains of HPV that are known to cause cervical cancer.

Other factors that affect the progression of HPV to cervical cancer include smoking, exposure to environmental toxins, co-infection with sexually transmitted infections such as HIV, and diet and nutrition.

Diet and nutrition play a role in the development of cervical cancer.

In fact, proper nutrition helps optimize the immune system, which in turn eliminates HPV and helps the body respond to cancerous tumors.

However, research on the role of diet in preventing or reducing the risk of developing cervical cancer has focused on antioxidant nutrients and dietary patterns that mitigate the effects of HPV.

High-inflammatory diets – similar to the Western diet – have been linked to the development of cervical cancer, particularly in women with HPV infection and a sedentary lifestyle.

A Western diet — which is typically high in saturated and trans fats, added sugars, and sodium — has been reported to increase chronic inflammation and make HPV infection more difficult to control. Persistent HPV infection leads to the development of cervical cancer.

On the other hand, following a Mediterranean diet — high in fruits, vegetables, peas or beans, healthy fats, and fish — can lead to a lower risk of both HPV infection and cervical cancer.

The intake of antioxidants such as the carotenoids lutein, zeaxanthin and beta-carotene as well as vitamins C, E and A can suppress the development of cervical cancer, especially in smokers.

In addition, nutrients like folic acid, vitamin D, and lycopene can stop the progression of HPV to cervical cancer.

Each of these antioxidant nutrients play distinct protective and overlapping roles during the developmental stages of cervical cancer.

Therefore, it is best to focus on overall dietary patterns rather than just individual nutrients.

An observational study of nearly 300,000 women suggests that increased intake of fruits and vegetables — which are high in various antioxidant nutrients — is associated with a reduced risk of cervical cancer.

A daily intake of 100 grams (g) of fruit, equivalent to 1 cup of cranberries, has been linked to a reduced risk of cervical cancer. Likewise, a daily increase of 100g of vegetables has a similar effect.

Adopting a dietary pattern similar to the Mediterranean diet reduces inflammation and the risk of cervical cancer.

A person could eat more:

  • Fruits and vegetables with an emphasis on a variety of colors and textures
  • complex carbohydrates such as brown rice, pasta, bread and couscous
  • Nuts, seeds, and olive oils, which are healthy unsaturated fats to replace saturated and trans fats
  • Herbs and spices, such as onion and garlic, while limiting sodium supplements
  • Low-fat dairy products such as milk, cheese and yogurt
  • Legumes such as peas, lentils and beans, including chickpeas and red beans

In addition to a balanced and nutritious diet, taking a daily multivitamin in women with HPV is associated with less severe HPV infection and a lower risk of progression to cervical cancer.

Foods with high inflammatory potential are associated with an increased risk of cervical cancer.

The “fast food culture” of the Western diet, characterized by processed foods low in fiber and high in added sugar, increases inflammation and is implicated in the development of cancer.

Foods to limit or avoid include:

  • Foods high in added sugars
  • processed meats such as cured meats
  • Red meat
  • Foods high in saturated and trans fats

Excessive consumption of added sugars from sugary drinks, dairy desserts and table sugar significantly increased the risk of cancer in a 10-year observational study of over 100,000 people.

Red meat, such as veal, pork, and lamb, in amounts of 101–200 g per day has been linked to an increased risk of cancer in both premenopausal and postmenopausal women.

Limit your intake of animal and processed sources of saturated and trans fats, which research has shown promote the growth of cancerous tumors.

Naturally occurring and plant sources of saturated fats and trans fats had no negative impact on cancer risk.

Pro-inflammatory foods upset the balance of the “good” bacteria that live in the gut, triggering inflammation and increasing the risk of cancer.

There are several natural home remedies that promise to treat or cure cervical cancer without medical intervention.

Some natural practices — like drinking green tea — may offer benefits for someone with cervical cancer. However, these do not replace the need for appropriate medical intervention and treatment.

Despite the emerging research on medicinal herbs to treat cervical cancer, more research is needed on these cancer-fighting plants, their active ingredients, and safe dosages.

Always consult with your oncology medical team to determine the best treatment options.

Cervical cancer is one of the most common gynecological cancers. Infection with HPV causes 99.7% of cases.

There is a clear link between diet and nutrition, the progression of HPV infection and the subsequent development of cervical cancer.

The fast-food culture of the Western diet — whose hallmarks are processed foods, red meat, low fiber and high added sugars — is pro-inflammatory and linked to an increased risk of cervical cancer.

Research suggests that antioxidant nutrients like carotenoids, vitamins A, C, E, D, and folic acid — all of which are prevalent in a Mediterranean diet — may prevent or reduce HPV infection and thus the development of cervical cancer.

Limit pro-inflammatory foods and increase the amount of fruits and vegetables rich in antioxidant nutrients to reduce the risk of cervical cancer.

Avoid substituting natural home remedies for appropriate medical interventions and treatments to treat cervical cancer. Consult with your oncology medical team to find the best treatment options.

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Whole Grain Pasta Nutrients

Not All Calories Are Equal – A Dietitian Explains How the Kinds of Foods You Eat Matter to Your Body



Even when two foods have the same calorie count, there can be huge differences in how they affect your body.

A calorie is a calorie is a calorie, at least from a thermodynamic point of view. It is defined as the amount of energy required to heat 1 kg of water by 1 degree

The Celsius scale, also known as the Celsius scale, is a temperature scale named after the Swedish astronomer Anders Celsius. On the Celsius scale, 0 °C is the freezing point of water and 100 °C is the boiling point of water at 1 atm pressure.

“> Centigrade (2.2 pounds at 1.8 degrees

The Fahrenheit scale is a temperature scale named after German physicist Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit, based on one he proposed in 1724. On the Fahrenheit temperature scale, the freezing point of water is at 32°F and water boils at 212°F, a 180°F separation as defined at sea level and normal atmospheric pressure.


But when it comes to your body’s health and energy levels, not all calories are created equal.

For example, some studies have reported that diets high in protein, low in carbohydrates, or a combination of both result in greater weight loss than diets with other levels of fat, protein, and carbohydrates.

If every calorie in food was the same, you wouldn’t expect differences in weight loss among people consuming the same number of calories spread across different types of food.

Nutritionists like me know that there are many factors that affect what a calorie does to your body. Here’s what we know so far about calories and nutrition.

Energy that is actually available to your body

At the end of the 18th century, the chemist WO Atwater and his colleagues developed a system for finding out how much energy – i.e. how many calories – different foods contain. Basically, he burned food samples and recorded how much energy they released in the form of heat.

But not every bit of energy in food that can be burned in the laboratory is actually available to your body. What scientists call metabolizable energy is the difference between the total energy of the food you eat and the energy that leaves your body undigested in feces and urine. For each of the three macronutrients—protein, carbohydrate, and fat—Atwater devised a percentage of the calories in it that would actually be metabolized.

Calorie Macronutrient Chart

According to the Atwater system, it is estimated that one gram of each macronutrient provides a specific number of calories. The US Department of Agriculture still uses these calculations today to come up with an official calorie count for each food.

How much energy you use

What you eat can affect what scientists call your body’s energy use. That’s how much energy it takes to keep you alive — energy you expend to breathe, digest, get your blood flowing, and so on — along with what you expend to move your body. You may have heard this called metabolism.

The quality of the diet can alter the body’s energy expenditure, also known as the thermic effect of food. For example, in one study, people who ate the same number of calories per day but ate either a low-carb or low-fat diet had differences in total energy expenditure of about 300 calories per day. Those on a very low-carb diet used the most energy, while those on a low-fat diet used the least.

In another study, high-fat diets resulted in lower total energy expenditure than high-carb diets. Other researchers reported that although replacing fat with carbohydrates did not change energy expenditure, people who increased their protein intake to 30% to 35% of their diet used more energy.

Nutritional information food labels

There’s a lot more to nutrition labels than just calorie information—and for good reason.

In general, a diet high in carbohydrates, fat, or both results in a 4% to 8% increase in energy expenditure, while high protein meals result in an 11% to 14% increase over resting metabolic rate. Protein has a higher thermic effect because it is harder for the body to break down. While these fluctuations aren’t huge, they could be contributing to the obesity epidemic by promoting subtle average weight gain.

quality of the calories you eat

Nutritionists look at a food’s glycemic index and glycemic load — that is, how quickly and by how much it raises your blood sugar levels. A rise in blood sugar triggers the release of insulin, which in turn affects energy metabolism and storing excess energy as fat.

Foods like white rice, cakes, cookies and chips all have a high glycemic index/load. Green vegetables, raw peppers, mushrooms and legumes all have a low glycemic index/load. There is evidence that foods with a lower glycemic index/load are better at regulating blood sugar levels, regardless of the calories they contain.

Reward centers in the brain light up when people eat high glycemic index/load foods, highlighting the pleasurable and addictive effects of foods like candy or white bread.

The fiber content of foods is another thing to consider. Your body can’t digest fiber — found in plant foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and beans — for energy. Therefore, high-fiber foods tend to have less metabolizable energy and can help you feel full with fewer calories.

friends at dinner

Food provides more than calories.

Empty calories — those from foods with minimal or no nutritional value — are another factor to consider. Things like white sugar, soda, and many ultra-processed snack foods don’t offer much, if any, benefit in terms of protein, vitamins, or minerals along with their calories. The opposite would be nutrient dense foods, which are high in nutrients or fiber but still relatively low in calories. Examples are spinach, apples and beans.

And don’t think of empty calories as neutral. Nutritionists consider them harmful calories because they can have negative health effects. Foods that contribute the most to weight gain are potato chips, potatoes, sugar-sweetened beverages, and meat, both processed and unprocessed. On the other hand, vegetables, whole grains, fruits, nuts, and yogurt are foods that are inversely associated with weight gain.

More about health than calories and weight

It is undisputed that the most important factor for weight loss is the difference between the number of calories burned and the number of calories exerted through exercise. But make no mistake. While weight plays a role in health and longevity, weight loss alone does not equate to health.

Yes, some high-protein diets seem to promote weight loss, at least in the short term. But epidemiologists know that in areas where people live the longest — nearly 100 years on average — people eat mostly plant-based diets, with very little or no animal protein and little or moderate fat in the form of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats .

I often hear friends or clients say things like “it’s these carbs that are making me fat” or “I have to go on a low carb diet”. But these ailments drive nutritionists like me insane. Carbohydrates include foods like Coca-Cola and candy canes, but also include apples and spinach. Reducing simple carbohydrates such as soft drinks, refined flour baked goods, pasta and sweets is definitely beneficial to health. But cutting out carbohydrates like vegetables and fruits has the opposite effect.

A plant-based diet high in plant-based protein and carbohydrates, mostly from vegetables, fruits, nuts, and legumes, is the healthiest diet researchers know for longevity and the prevention of chronic diseases like heart disease, cancer, high blood pressure, and many other conditions .

The modern western diet suffers from an increase in the amount of calories ingested while at the same time decreasing the quality of the calories ingested. And researchers now know that calories from different foods have different effects on feelings of satiety, insulin response, the process of converting carbohydrates into body fat, and metabolic energy expenditure.

When it comes to your health, you count more on the quality of the calories you consume than on the number of calories.

Written by Terezie Tolar-Peterson, Associate Professor of Food Science, Nutrition & Health Promotion, Mississippi State University.

This article was first published in The Conversation.The conversation

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