Most people are aware of their need for protein, but often think fiber is only to help them go quicker in the bathroom. Both protein and fiber play an important role in your diet. If you want a boon to weight loss, ensuring you have adequate amounts of both can do it for you. Both protein and fiber give you a feeling of fullness, so you’ll eat less. Using foods that contain both or are high in either one are important additions for meals and snacks.
High fiber foods not only aid digestion, by supporting healthy bacteria, they also help weight loss.
Fiber fills you up, but without extra calories. Digesting fiber is impossible, but not to the microbes in the gut. In fact, fiber keeps your gut healthy by nurturing beneficial bacteria, making it a prebiotic. When you eat it, it takes up space and leaves you with a full feeling, even though you’ve consumed no extra calories. There’s soluble and insoluble fiber. Both add bulk, but in different ways. Insoluble fiber takes up space as it is, while soluble fiber turns to a gel by absorbing liquid, leaving you feeling fuller longer.
Protein takes longer to digest.
Eating adequate protein is a proven aid for weight loss. One study compared the benefits of fiber to protein for weight loss and found that people with insulin resistance or type 2 diabetes benefited most from fiber for regulating sugar, but for weight loss, protein won. Not only did protein provide that same feeling of satiation, it also boosted the metabolism. It increased thermogenesis. That’s the body heat created to digest a food. That means you’ll burn more calories to digest protein.
Combine high fiber with protein for the best effects.
Getting the benefits of both in a meal can boost your weight loss efforts, plus provide quite a few health benefits. Food like nuts, whole grains and seeds are high in both protein and fiber, so they’re a ready made food to provide both. Plant protein is often one of the most efficient ways to get both, but that shouldn’t discount animal protein sources that can provide other benefits and nutrients.
- When you have an exercise program accompanying your healthy eating weight loss efforts, high protein is necessary to build muscle tissue. The more muscle tissue you have, the more calories you burn, since it takes more calories to maintain muscle tissue than fat tissue.
- Keep it simple and get a great combination of both protein and fiber. Oatmeal with fresh fruit and nuts sprinkled on top creates a good combination. An apple with nut butter is another that makes a great snack.
- You need approximately 46 to 56 grams every day and between 25 and 35 grams of fiber. The exact amount is based on your activity level and weight.
- When your blood sugar level spikes and crashes, it can create sugar cravings. Increased protein and fiber helps prevent the spikes and drops, leveling your blood sugar.