7 Healthy Foods That Are High in Fiber ...

Fiber is a miraculous nutrient that has many health benefits. It helps control cholesterol, thereby helping reduce your risk of developing heart disease. It also satisfies your appetite so that you can lose weight or maintain a currently healthy number on the scale. Finally, getting enough fiber helps regulate your bowel function and promotes healthy digestion. If you want to get more fiber into your day, it’s as easy as eating these foods on a regular basis, according to the experts at Mayo Clinic.

1. Raspberries

This tiny little fruit is one of the highest in fiber with 8 grams per cup of raspberries. You can eat them plain by the handful for a snack, but that’s not your only option. Pile them on oatmeal or dried cereal or use them as a sweet topping for your pancakes. You can also toss raspberries into smoothies, quick bread mix or fruit salad. They add color and a tartness that can’t be beat.

2. Pears

With 5.5 grams of fiber in a single pear, it makes sense to eat them as often as possible. They make a great alternative to the apple you usually eat with your lunchtime sandwich. They’re juicy and delicious for breakfast too. I like to bake apples topped with a bit of brown sugar, a dash of cinnamon and some raisins. It makes for a healthy dessert that you can feel really good about eating.

3. Strawberries

Strawberries contain about 3 grams of fiber per cup. I love strawberries because they are sweet and tart and work in so many ways. My favorite way to eat them is to top a scoop of Greek yogurt with chopped strawberries and granola for breakfast. They are also delicious in a spinach salad with poppyseed dressing. If you love strawberries, eat more of them and you can take care of a good chunk of your daily fiber needs.

4. Air-Popped Popcorn

Popcorn is considered a whole grain, making it a fiber-rich choice anyone can feel good about. Three cups of air-popped popcorn contains 3.5 grams of fiber. Just be cautious with the butter and salt, both of which can compromise your health. If you want some flavor, try lime juice and chili powder.

5. Oatmeal

When it comes to fiber, you can’t go wrong with oatmeal. It’s got a good dose with 4 grams per serving. If you add some fruit to your bowl of oatmeal, you have a fiber-packed meal that you can enjoy morning, noon or night. You can also use oatmeal in baked goods or to replace breadcrumbs in meatballs and meatloaf. Easy, right?

6. Beans

Pretty much any kind of bean can help you reach your daily fiber needs and there are so many ways to enjoy them. Beans make a great side dish for tacos or burritos, but you can also toss cooked beans into soups and salads for an interesting new taste and texture. A serving of beans ranges from about 10 to about 16 grams of fiber, making them one of your best choices for increasing your intake.

7. Peas

This humble veggie contains more than 8 grams of fiber per cup. I love to serve green peas as a side dish with grilled fish or chicken, but they have a mild taste that makes them perfect for other uses too. Add them to pasta primavera, macaroni or cheese, veggie soup or a tossed vegetable salad. Any way you eat them, you are going to love them!

Which of these is your favorite choice? What other foods do you eat to increase your fiber intake?