Dietary fiber is found mainly in fruits, vegetables, whole grains and legumes. It is best known for its ability to prevent or relieve constipation. In addition, adequate fiber intake has been associated with improved weight control, cholesterol levels and blood sugar levels.

Fiber includes the parts of the plant that your body can’t digest or absorb. There are two types of fiber: soluble and insoluble:

  • Soluble fiber dissolves in water to form a gel-like material. It is associated with improved blood cholesterol and glucose levels.
  • Insoluble fiber helps with overall bowel function by increasing stool bulk

Most plant-based foods contain both soluble and insoluble fiber. The quantity of each type of fiber varies by food. To receive the greatest health benefit, eat a variety of high-fiber foods.


Dietary Sources of Fiber












Whole-wheat flour

Wheat bran



Vegetables such as cauliflower, green beans and potatoes


Quick Tips

  • Eat 2-5 servings of fruit per day (keep in mind that fruit juice lacks the fiber of whole fruit)
  • Eat 3-4 cups of vegetables per day
  • Eat 3-5 cups of beans and legumes per week (black, kidney, pinto, garbanzo, lentils, and split peas)
  • Choose whole grain breads and cereals and brown rice instead of their white alternatives


Developed By Kim Andreola MS, RD

Information provided is for informational purposes only and is not intended as medical advice. For further information, please consult a medical professional.

Fiber.  (2014, January 1). Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Retrieved June 10, 2014, from

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