SHEDDING FAT AND STAYING FIT: HOW FIBER FIGHTS FAT
On an eating plan rich in carbohydrates and fiber from grains, vegetables, legumes, and fruits, you will automatically be consuming little fat, refined sugar, and cholesterol. This not only protects you from major diseases, but also provides built-in weight control. Because many high-fiber foods require a good deal more chewing than refined foods and animal products, you're less likely to rush through meals and overeat. Bulky, water-absorbing, fiber-rich foods also swell inside your stomach and delay gastric emptying, making you feel satisfied and full. What's more, they offer plenty of carbohydrates, protein, vitamins, and minerals in exchange for very few calories.
High-fiber foods are used directly for energy and are less likely than fats to be stored as extra pounds (but they will be, of course, if they're eaten in excess). Foods in their natural state (or as close to it as possible), like a fresh apple or a baked potato, contain soluble and insoluble fiber, along with vitamins, minerals, essential fatty acids, and other components. The presence of both soluble and insoluble fiber in a meal may also reduce somewhat the number of calories you absorb from other foods you eat. And some studies have shown that soluble fibers may aid in weight loss by reducing insulin levels and appetite and therefore calorie intake and fat storage.