There are many variables that you can look at when you’re trying to get your diet under control especially during the cold “hibernation” months of winter. Rather than trying to count calories or eat specific macronutrients, become more aware of your fiber intake and the amount of added sugar you’re consuming each day. Gaining more knowledge and having a better understanding in these two areas could significantly improve your health and well-being.
How much fiber and added sugar should you consume each day?
The 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans are released every 5 years and recommend 14 grams of fiber per day for every 1,000 calories consumed. For the average women that is about 25 grams a day and for men it’s about 38 grams a day. Most Americans, however, are getting only 15 grams a day on average.
If you think the fiber recommendations sound similar to another ingredient, then you’re right. The same numbers that are needed for fiber also hold true when looking at the daily allotment for added sugar. When talking about sugar, which is considered “toxic” by many health professionals, the lower the daily dosage, the better off you’ll be. A good starting point, however, would be to take in no more than 150 calories a day for men (38 grams) and 100 calories for women (25 grams). A good way to remember – as well as monitor – these fiber/sugar numbers is to stay focused on 38 and 25 grams a day for the average man and women respectively.
Men = Consume about 38 grams of fiber a day or 14 grams/fiber/1000 calories and <38 grams of added sugar a day.
Women = Consume about 25 grams of fiber a day or 14 grams/fiber/1000 calories and <25 grams of added sugar a day.
The best part of knowing and monitoring your nutrition numbers – after just 2-4 weeks – you’ll notice that you’re not as hungry all the time, experience a “natural” boost in energy and see, not to mention feel, a difference around your waist and/or hips. Start monitoring your fiber and added sugar intake today!