Goodness of Fruit and Fibre






As much as we hear about fibre and its importance in our daily diets, the right reasons for including the same in our daily diets may not be very well known. In this quick read, let’s find out what dietary fiber is, it’s role in daily diet and how much we need in a day!


WHAT ARE DIETARY FIBRES?  Dietary fibers are carbohydrates that do not get easily digested by the human body. They are naturally present in plant foods and are resistant to being broken down by enzymes present in the human digestive system. Unlike fats, proteins or carbohydrates which our body digests and absorbs, fibers pass through and remain relatively intact through our stomach, small intestine and colon on its way out of body. However, fibers play very important role in daily diet and are must to have!

In general, dietary fibers are of two types - Soluble & Insoluble fibers. Soluble fibers are found in majority of fruits like figs, guava, jackfruit, dates, apple etc. Insoluble fibers are found in foods like whole wheat grains, legumes, peas, outer covering of seeds, apples and root vegetables such as carrots etc.


WHY DO WE NEED DIETARY FIBRE? Dietary fibers are known to provide multiple health benefits. Both soluble and insoluble dietary fibers have specific health benefits.

Soluble fiber delays gastric emptying and intestinal transit time. Because of the large water-holding capacity of soluble dietary fiber, it also helps to reduce blood cholesterol levels. Soluble fiber gets fermented in large intestine to produce short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs), that enhance the good bacteria which are known to support gut health.

Insoluble fibers work to promote laxation, speeding up intestinal transit time, adding bulk to the stool and therefore can prevent certain conditions such as constipation.

Keeping in mind these benefits of dietary fibers, it is essential to include fiber rich foods in our daily diets.



Nutrition is a basic prerequisite to sustain life, therefore it is very important to consume a nutritionally balanced diet by including a variety of foods. Dietary fibers are one of the most important elements of a balanced diet and should be consumed in adequate amounts. According to the Indian Council of Medical Research - National Institute of Nutrition (ICMR-NIN), Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDA) per day for fiber, varies with age and are as follows:

  • Men: 30g/day
  • Women: 25g/day
  • Children (1-9y): 15-26g/day
  • Adolescents (10-18y): 30-50g/day