Why Fiber Should Be Your BFF

We hear the word “fiber” mentioned so often yet most of us are not getting enough of the stuff. Maybe that’s because we don’t know how much fiber we really need or perhaps we’re not even aware of the many pleasant-tasting ways to find fiber.
 
Why is fiber so important? Dietary fiber from fruit, as part of an overall healthy diet, helps reduce blood cholesterol levels and may lower risk of heart disease. Additionally, fiber also feeds the good bacteria that already resides in our gut, and that’s important because good bacteria plays a key role in better digestion and your overall health. 
 
The Institute of Medicine recommends that men between the ages of 19 and 50 get about 38 grams of fiber daily and those over 50 should get at least 30 grams. For women ages 19 to 50, the recommendation is at least 25 grams and for women over 50, at least 21 grams. That sounds like a lot of fiber…but it’s not as hard as you think to deliciously boost your intake. 
 
Let’s connect some popular foods to those numbers: 1 cup cooked whole wheat pasta  has 6 grams, 1 medium bell pepper has 2 grams, 1 ounce pistachios have 3 grams, and ½ cup cooked mushrooms has around 2 grams . Avocados are a good source of fiber (3 g per serving which is equivalent to one-third of a medium avocado) and are a great fresh fruit option to help boost fiber intake at any meal.
 
This pasta avocado pesto recipe provides lots of flavor to please your taste buds while it makes your friendly bacteria your BFF! It’s one of my family’s favorite creations… there’s nothing like a dish that stimulates all of your senses while also makes sense to add to your weekly menu.

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