Find all of the information you need on fiber, in one place.
Getting Enough?Men and women of all ages need different amounts of fiber. Chances are you aren't getting enough - find out here.
Fiber Rich FoodsAdding more fiber to your diet is easy. Visit this section to see what fiber rich foods to incorporate into your daily routine.
A general recommendation for adults is 25-35 grams of dietary fiber per day. Children need fiber too, different amounts depending on the child's age and how much they eat. The chart below shows specific recommendations, however, it is not practical or necessary for most people to be counting fiber daily. Just know what foods are good sources of fiber and enjoy eating those more often!
When increasing the fiber in your diet, start gradually. Too much fiber too quickly can cause discomfort. To try a fibre tracker tool, click here.
Remember to drink plenty of fluids daily with a high fiber diet (i.e. juice, milk, soup and especially water). Fluids help your body to use fiber properly.
Here are some quick and easy ways to boost your fiber intake:
1. Start your day with a fiber-rich cereal: oat bran, bran flakes or oatmeal.
2. Top off your high-fiber cereal with a scoop of raisins, a sliced banana or some orange sections.
3. Take a high-fiber bran or oatmeal muffin to lunch. It's even better if it contains fruit like apples, apricots, raisins or dates.
4. Fiber-boost your salads with carrots, apple slices, dried fruit, raw broccoli and cauliflower pieces, chickpeas (garbanzo beans), kidney beans or All-Bran buds.
5. Choose whole grain breads as often as possible.
6. Load up your plate with extra vegetables.
7. Work some beans and peas into your meals.try split pea soup, baked beans, three-bean salad or chili.
8. Try hummus (chickpea spread) in a pita pocket; have lima beans for dinner.
9. Add green peas to casseroles, stir-fry meals, rice or noodles.
10. Boost the fiber in casseroles and mixed dishes by tossing in a handful of oat bran, wheat bran or a crunchy high-fiber cereal.
11. Snack on fiber-filled fruits: pears, raspberries, apples, oranges, nectarines and bananas.
12. Have a sweet tooth? Cookies such as sultana raisin cookies or fig bars offer some fiber. A real winner is a homemade oatmeal and raisin cookie.
13. When a recipe calls for 1 cup of flour, use 2/3 cup white flour and 1/3 cup oat bran or whole wheat flour.
14. Whenever possible, for maximum fiber, eat the whole fruit or vegetable (including its skin).
* Increase the fiber in your diet slowly. Eat fiber often to reduce gas and bloating.
* Drink at least six to eight cups (2 L) of fluid such as water, juice, milk, or soup each day. Fiber holds fluid, which keeps stools soft.
* Eat regular meals and snacks to keep food moving through your bowel.
* Establish a routine and allow enough time for bowel movements.
* Exercise - physical activity promotes regular bowel function. Increase the Fiber in Your Diet * Choose whole grain breads, cereals and crackers, whole wheat pasta, bulgur, quinoa and brown rice.
* Eat a high fiber cereal every day, either on its own or with another favourite cereal.
* Add bran or wheat germ to hamburger patties, coating mixes, casseroles, cookies, cereals, or eat a high fiber cereal every day, either on its own or mixed with another cereal.
* Replace half the flour in baking with whole wheat or oat flour.
* Add raisins, bananas, or strawberries to your cereal.
* Add fruit to muffins and cookies.
* Choose vegetables or fruit at every meal and snack. A Food Guide serving is 1/2 cup (125 mL) or one whole vegetable or fruit. Eat the skins or peels where appropriate.
* Use prunes or prune juice in small amounts. Prunes and prune juice contain a natural laxative. Don't use them too often or in large amounts as they may cause a lazy bowel.
* Eat more legumes, such as cooked dried peas, beans, and lentils.
* Add kidney beans, chickpeas, and lentils to casseroles, salads, and spaghetti sauce.
* Use extra vegetables in casseroles, on pizza, or in salads. Add carrots, green peppers, broccoli, spinach, corn, or peas to your recipes.
* Enjoy stir-fried vegetables more often.
* Add 1 to 2 tbsp. (15-30 mL) ground flaxseed to cereal, applesauce, pudding, or in juice. Bulk up with these 10 tips for increasing your fiber intake.
* Start slowly, add a little each day and build up to the recommended level. Simultaneously, add more water to your diet.
* Eat vegetables and fruit raw whenever possible. Boiling them too long, for example, can cause up to one-half of the fiber to be lost in the water. Steam or stir-fry them if you have to cook.
* Pureeing doesn't destroy fiber, but juice does not have the fiber of the whole fruit if the pulp has been strained away.
* Always start your day with a bowl of high-fiber cereal -- one that has five or more grams per serving.
* Put fresh fruit on top of your high-fiber cereal to add another 1 g or 2 g of fiber.
* Buy and eat only whole grains. The operative word is "whole." Look for it on the ingredient panel. Wheat bread doesn't mean whole-wheat bread. On average, a slice of whole-wheat bread has 2 g to 3 g of fiber. Choose whole- wheat pasta instead of white, etc.
* Add beans to salads, soups and stews.
* Add bran cereal to muffins, breads and casseroles. Substitute oat bran for one-third of the all-purpose flour in baking.
* When you eat out, ask for fresh fruit instead of dessert.
* Have fruit or fresh vegetables for between-meal snacks.
Fiber Supplements and Laxatives
* Concentrated fiber sources such as Metamucil or plain Prodiem are safe to use regularly. Start with a half or quarter dose and increase gradually. Drink lots of fluids.
* Commercial laxatives should not be used long-term. Some laxatives can damage the bowels.
* See your doctor if constipation is a big problem for you or if you notice a change in your usual bowel pattern.