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The Truth About Fiber

 

When you hear the word fiber, you think whole grains, right? I know I do. What an amazing job the whole grain marketing team did on that one! But now that you are entering a keto diet, how are you going to manage to stay "regular" without that whole-grain-carb-bomb? Well I did some research, and I have good news.  

I first wanted to start my research the way any average person, possibly suffering from a bout of constipation, would. I went to google, typed in "fiber recommendations", and clicked on the first link that appeared. It is a recommendation from WebMD. 

According to the U.S. government's 2015 Dietary Guidelines, women should be getting 25 grams of fiber per day, and men, 38 grams. And the best sources for fiber are vegetables, beans, fruit, whole grains, and nuts.  

Here is a what a sample day would look like according to the U.S. Dietary Guidelines.  

  • Breakfast: whole-grain bran flake cereal, half a banana, and skim milk. 
  • Snack: 24 almonds and a quarter cup of raisins 
  • Lunch: Turkey sandwich made with 2 slices of whole wheat bread, lettuce, and tomato, and an orange 
  • Snack: Yogurt with half a cup of blueberries 
  • Dinner: Grilled fish with a salad of romaine lettuce and shredded carrots, half a cup of spinach, and half a cup of lentils 
  • Snack: 3 cups popped popcorn 
Total Fiber: 37.1 grams  
Total Fat:  80.7 grams 
Total Protein:  101.9 grams 
Total CARBS: 244 grams  

 

But if you are beginning a keto diet, experiencing constipation, and you read this, you are going to feel quite discouraged, as that is a HUGE carb load. Just in the breakfast alone, you are going to be consuming somewhere around 62 grams of carbs! Just in breakfast! That is going to kick you out of ketosis immediately, not to mention induce a sugar comma around noon. And if you were to eat this meal, you are looking at a whopping 244 grams of carbs in one day! Also, very little fat, which will leave you hungry in a couple hours and left feeling unsatisfied.  

So we know that we can't get our fiber from these high carbs sources, so where will we get our keto diet fiber from?    

Well let's ask ourselves a better question. What did our ancestors do for fiber? They certainly didn't have Metamucil, Colace, or MiralaxSo that means they must have had enough fiber in what nature provided. And that is where the good news comes from.  

Here is a sample of a typical keto day, from Leanne Vogel's new book, The Keto Diet. (insert link here) The recipes below are included in the book.  

  • Meal 1: Flaxseed Cinnamon Bun Mufins, Rocket Fuel Latte  
  • Meal 2: Spinich Salad with Breaded Chicken Strips  
  • Meal 3: One-Pot Hamburger Dinner with MCT Guacamole  
  • Snack: Keto Lemonade, Bacon Fudge 
Total Fiber: 19.5 grams  
Total Fat: 171 grams 
Total Protein: 89.8 grams 
Total CARBS: 34.7 (net carbs: 12.5) 

You can see that you are hitting the correct macros, and even though you are getting less fiber than the U.S. Guidelines, you are getting the right kind of fiber for your keto diet, which means less "bulk" will be going through your system. 

But if you still experience issues with fiber for your keto diet, here are a couple things you can try until things even out.  

Drink lots of water.  

Eat fermented foods.  

Supplement with magnesium, especially before bed.  

 

Good luck, and stay regular by implementing our fiber facts into your diet!

Samantha Stephenson, Primal Health Coach, ACE Certified Personal Trainer 

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