For good digestive health, it is important to eat a healthy balanced diet which includes plenty of fresh fruit, vegetables and wholegrains.
Fibre is an important factor that contributes to our digestive health. It is indigestible plant material, which is found in fruits, vegetables, wholegrain and pulses and which can help to keep our bowels healthy.
Fibre provides the bulk to our food, which helps it pass easily through the gut. However, many of us do not eat enough fibre so our gut has to work extra hard to get the waste through our gut, increasing the possibility of constipation. Good sources of fibre include:
Vegetables and fruits – eat raw with skin on for extra fibre and aim to eat five portions a day. Frozen vegetables and dried fruits count too – as do juices, although remember juice only counts as one portion, no matter how much you consume.
Grains and cereals – this includes foods such as rice, oats, pasta, bread, cous cous and breakfast cereals. Try to choose the wholegrain varieties (such as wholegrain pasta and wholegrain bread) where possible as they contain more fibre.
Pulses – lentils, chickpeas and beans are very tasty and filling. A jacket potato with baked beans and salad would be a delicious and nutritious lunchtime meal.