Get your fiber from fresh fruit and vegetables

Getting enough fiber in your diet is particularly important for older adults.

Fiber has been a topic I have been discussing with older adults who are receiving their Senior Market Fresh coupons. Specifically, fiber as it relates to fruits and vegetables. 

In Michigan, we are entering into the best time of year to enjoy locally grown, Michigan Fresh fruits and vegetables. While we may know that MyPlate encourages us to fill half our plates with fruit and vegetables at our meals, you might not realize how beneficial those fruits and veggies are to helping you increase your fiber intake. 

According to the Mayo Clinic, as a guideline, if you are 51 years and older, the recommendation for men is 30 grams and for women is 21 grams of fiber per day. So, how do you think you are doing? Think about how many servings of fruits, vegetables and whole grains you eat each day.  If you find that you need to boost your fiber intake, check out how quickly the fiber in fruits and vegetables can add up if you eat them throughout your day.

Below are the average fiber amounts according to Fruits and Veggies More Matters, that can be found in various fruits and vegetables:

  • Pear - 7 grams
  • Raspberries (1 cup) - 8 grams
  • Prunes (5 total) - 3 grams
  • Spinach (1½ cup) - 5 grams
  • Broccoli (1 medium stalk) - 3 grams
  • Sweet Potato - 4 grams
  • Potato with skin - 5 grams
  • Apple - 4 grams
  • Brussel Sprouts (4 total) - 3 grams
  • Blueberries (1 cup) - 3 grams
  • Bell Pepper - 2 grams
  • Nectarine - 2 grams

Remember that fiber can also be found in whole grain foods, nut and seeds as well. Michigan State University Extension encourages you to find out your daily fiber recommendation and check how close you are getting to consuming that amount each day. Eating more fruit and vegetables all summer long will help you get closer to your fiber goal, so enjoy those fruits and veggies and all the healthy benefits to your body that come with them.

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