When it comes to dietary fibre, the first thing that comes to mind is that it “keeps you regular”. But there is so much more that a fibre-rich diet can offer us, including new evidence that it could help us live longer.


First things first: what is dietary fibre?

Dietary fibre is the part of plant foods that passes through your gut undigested, and offers many benefits:

  • Reduced inflammation
  • Improved weight and appetite control
  • Improved blood sugar levels
  • Lower levels of ‘artery clogging’ LDL-cholesterol
  • Reduced risk of heart disease & type 2 diabetes
  • Improved immune function

There are different types of fibre, all of which carry their own unique benefits.

Read on for the run down on the three main types, and simple tips to get your fibre fix:


Insoluble fibre

If you’ve been feeling blocked up over the New Year, we’ve got good news for you! Insoluble fibre is the “roughage” in food. It acts as a big bristly brush that sweeps through your digestive system and moves things along faster. We find insoluble fibre in the skin of fruit and veg, whole grain bread & cereal, wheat bran, nuts & seeds. To boost your insoluble fibre:

  • Keep the skin on your fruit and veggies
  • Swap white bread, rice and wraps for whole grain varieties and brown rice
  • Swap your cereal over to a higher fibre alternative e.g. All bran, Barley+ Muesli
  • Sprinkle toasted nuts/seeds over salads

Soluble fibre

Soluble fibre absorbs water and forms a gel in your gut. This slows down digestion, resulting in lower blood sugar levels after eating, and a feeling of fullness. Soluble fibre also helps lower unhealthy cholesterol in our blood, but binding to it so that you can pass it in the toilet. Soluble fibre is in oats, barley, flesh of fruit & veg, psyllium husks, beans and lentils. Try:

  • Choosing overnight oats or Oat Brits for brekky
  • Adding psyllium to smoothies, cereal or Kicstart
  • Swapping juice for whole fruit and vegetables
  • Mix lentils, beans and barley into soups & salads

Resistant starch

Resistant starch helps your healthy gut bugs thrive, promoting digestive health and lowering inflammation, which may also be linked to reduced disease risk. Get your resistant starch fix from legumes/beans, whole grains; lightly ripe bananas and cooked and cooled pasta/rice/potato. To get your resistant starch fix:

  • Snack on a firm banana or hummus & vita weats
  • Cook freekeh instead of cous cous
  • Try Freedom Foods Barley+ wrap or muesli

To get the benefits, we recommend 25-30 grams of fibre each day. Not sure where to start? Don’t worry – we’ve got you covered! See below for ideas: