(FOX 2) - Chances are, you're not getting enough fiber in your diet. The recommended amount of fiber per day is 25-30g - with most of us probably getting about 15-16g.
Dr. Sindhu Koshy from Ascension Macomb-Oakland Hospital joined us to tell us more about fiber and why it's important.
Fiber is something we actually don't digest well, so think of it as something that goes through the body and cleans everything out, she says.
"[Fiber] pulls out things that cause cholesterol, high blood pressure, sugars, and that's what keeps us regular. But it also keeps us full throughout the day, eating more fiber, which will probably prevent you from snacking more often," Dr. Koshy says.
Fruits and vegetables have large fiber counts, as well as oatmeal, nuts and whole grains.
Dr. Koshy says the heart benefits from fiber really come from the soluble fibers, which are the oatmeals, beans, nuts and fruits. Insoluble fibers are the ones that keep you regular and feeling full longer, which are found more in vegetables and whole grains.
Dr. Koshy suggests looking at fiber in the labels when you're starting to pay attention to your count, so then it's easier for you to gauge where you're at.