The FDA recommends 28 grams of fiber per day for adults on a 2,000 calorie diet…and the average American usually eats well under that! So when should you be eating fiber, what does it do for you, how do you get enough, and why not eat it before a run?
Health Benefits of Fiber
Fiber is most commonly known for its contribution to a healthy digestion system and a happy gut! While it does aid in digestion, fiber also has so many other benefits. Fiber has been found to lower cholesterol levels, control blood sugar levels and incorporating it in your meals will keep you fuller for longer!
Foods High In Fiber
When you think fiber, you typically want to think plant based. Foods like veggies, whole grains, fruits, nuts and beans are where you’ll find most of your fiber! A breakfast of oats and berries, a lunch of a sandwich on whole grain bread, and a dinner that includes brown rice and veggies is an easy example of a day of eating to get in sufficient fiber.
Fiber before running?
Fiber is excellent to eat with breakfast to keep you full and get your day started, it is also amazing to include in your snacks to hold you over until your next meal! The one time you want to consider avoiding too much fiber is before running, or any high intensity exercise. A meal high in fiber before a run can lead to issues with digestion throughout your run, such as bloating or cramping. Our body prefers simple carbohydrates before running, as these are easier to digest and use for energy! A banana or a slice of toast is okay, but a meal like beans, rice and veggies would be better tolerated after a race.
So remember to get your fiber in throughout the day, but to focus on fueling your body with easily digestible carbohydrates before running or high intensity training! Eating for performance is a great way to enhance your workouts and bring you closer to your goals.
Learn how to nourish your body properly by scheduling a free call with Alli here.
This article was written by Lindsey Moser, nutrition intern. Fact checked by Allison Tallman RD.