If you bet on the steak, you would be wrong. A recent study proved it. The reason beans and peas were more satisfying? Fiber!
Researchers fed 43 healthy, normal-weight young men a pork/veal dinner. The meal was 19% protein, 53% carbohydrate and 28% fat, and supplied 6 grams of fiber. The men’s appetites were then scored every half hour for the next three hours. At that point, they were given a second meal and told to eat as much as they wanted.
The next day, the same men were fed the same meal, except that the meat was replaced by beans and peas. Although the percentages of protein, carbohydrate and fat were the same as in the first meal, the fiber content was now 25 grams. The men’s appetites were again monitored, and after three hours they were given a second meal and told to eat as much as they wanted.
The results? The men reported being less hungry after the beans and peas meal; and when they were offered the second meal after three hours they ate less.
What’s the biggest problem when you’re trying to lose weight? Hunger! Yet in this study fiber reduced hunger naturally and effortlessly.
Some authorities believe that our modern low-fiber diets are the major cause of our current obesity epidemic. In traditional societies 40-60 grams of fiber daily was the norm; the average American today gets about 5-15 grams a day.
There are two kinds of fiber: soluble and insoluble. Although both are important, soluble fiber, which absorbs water and becomes gelatinous and bulky—is best for appetite control. Some good sources of soluble fiber are: Apples, bananas, blackberries, blueberries, citrus fruits, cranberries, nectarines, peaches, pears, plums, prunes, strawberries, beans and legumes, peas, nuts, psyllium seed and flaxseed, oats, asparagus, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, celery, cucumbers, eggplant, green beans, Jerusalem artichokes, mushrooms, okra, and root vegetables, like beets, carrots, potatoes, and onions. (Fruit and vegetable peels are insoluble fiber.)
You can also get 7 grams of fiber from a scoop of Beyond Health’s Dietary Fiber Formula. This formula is 80% soluble, 20% insoluble, and composed of a special blend of high-quality fiber sources that maximize blood sugar regulation, optimize digestion and elimination, lower cholesterol, remove toxic heavy metals and excess estrogen, support mental clarity, encourage healthy bacterial populations in the gut, AND support your weight loss goals.
One note of caution: Increase fiber intake gradually. Too much, too fast and you’ll get gas, bloating, and even cramping and constipation. Use our Fiber Sources chart to track your fiber consumption. Add about 5 grams a day for a week, the next week 5 more, and so on until you reach your target amount. Even with gradual change, you may experience some transition symptoms as your gut bacteria adjust.
- Kristensen MD. Meals based on vegetable protein sources (beans and peas) are more satiating than meals based on animal protein sources (veal and pork)—a randomized cross-over meal test study. Food & Nutrition Research. Published online October 19, 2016.
- See also, BH Staff. The Skinny on Fiber and Weight Loss, May 1, 2012.