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5 to 1 Rule Guide To Know If Your Food Contains Enough Fiber

By | January 2nd, 2016 | Modified - March 2nd, 2019
5 to 1 Rule Guide To Know If Your Food Contains Enough Fiber
5 to 1 Rule Guide To Know If Your Food Contains Enough Fiber

A good rule of thumb is the ingredients in your food or on your food label should state “whole” and should contain 1 gram of fiber to every 5 grams of carbohydrate. “Whole” is the first important criteria because the fiber in food needs to be in its natural state and not be fiber isolates or extracts.

Studies show that the natural fiber in food is protective against bowel disease, colon cancer, diabetes, and heart disease, and fiber isolates or extracts is not.[1] Fiber doesn’t act alone and contains phytonutrients that are bound to it, and nutrients that are packaged with it. They all interact with synergy to provide their combined health protecting benefits.

Ideally you need consume your fiber as part of whole fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, seeds, and whole grains. If you eat processed foods, like packaged breakfast cereals, they should be minimally processed to avoid toxic additives and preservatives and destroying the food’s nutrients.

The next rule of thumb is the foods you consume should have a carbohydrate to fiber ratio that is 5 to 1. A ratio of 5 to 1 or less optimally supports health and reduces the risk of chronic diseases.

Dr. Greger gives an example using whole wheat Wonder Bread. It passes the first test, having “whole” listed in the ingredients, but it doesn’t pass the 5 to 1 rule of thumb. The bread contained 20g of carbohydrates and 2.7g of fiber. Divide 20 by 2.7 and you end up with around 7 which is more than 5, so it failed the test.

The Ezekiel bread did better. It contains 15g of carbohydrates and 3g of fiber. 15 divided by 3 equals 5, so it passed the test. Though is passed the test it is still better to get your fiber from whole foods.

125g of apples with skins contains 13g of sugar carbohydrates and 3g of fiber. 13 divided by 3 is around 4, to its passed with a 4 to 1 ratio.

The closer you come to eating a whole food plant-based diet the less chance you will have of not eating enough fiber, while avoiding toxic additives and preservatives.

Dr. Greger on Youtube

[1] D E Threapleton, D C Greenwood, C E L Evans, C L Cleghorn, and more. Dietary fibre intake and risk of cardiovascular disease: systematic review and meta-analysis. BMJ 2013; 347.

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Alklaine Plant Based Diet

About Author:

Aqiyl Aniys is the author of the books Alkaline Herbal Medicine, Alkaline Plant Based Diet and the children's book, Faith and Justice eat an Alkaline Plant Based Diet." He received a certificate in plant-based nutrition from Cornell University, a BA in Organizational Behavior and Communications from NYU, worked as an elementary school teacher, and studied social work. He enjoys boxing, kick boxing, cycling, power walking, and basically anything challenging, and his alkaline plant-based diet supports all that he does. Learn more about transitioning to an alkaline vegan diet using the Dr. Sebi nutritional guide.

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