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The Effect of Soluble Fiber on the Glycemic Index

26 Nov 2020

Diabetes is the sixth leading cause of death in America today.1 Its effects on an individual’s life are far-reaching, and managing it is a full-time commitment. Diabetes is caused by the body’s inability to utilize or create insulin. This lack of insulin leads to an unhealthy amount of blood glucose (sugar). Thankfully, there are a multitude of ways to live a full, healthy life while managing diabetes! One very simple way to make living with diabetes easier is by increasing your soluble fiber intake.

Soluble fiber is the type of fiber frequently found in oats, honey, beans, barley, and an assortment of fruits and vegetables.2 When your body breaks down soluble fiber, it lowers the glycemic index (GI) of other foods as they are digested. This index was created to rank the rate at which foods increase or decrease blood glucose in your system.3 Foods with a lower GI are digested more slowly, and therefore glucose levels are raised at a slower pace.

During the digestive process, soluble fiber mixes with liquid in your body and forms a gel-like substance. This gel allows the stomach to slow the rate of digestion. As soluble fiber moves into the large intestine, it then becomes a source of food for friendly bacteria! These friendly bacteria work on your behalf in two ways: they send signals to the liver telling it to cease the production of glucose, and also help boost insulin sensitivity.

By increasing your daily intake of soluble fiber as part of a diabetes management strategy developed by your physician or other healthcare professional, you are helping your body fight the effects of diabetes! And, consuming more dietary fiber can provide a host of general health benefits as well as those specific to GI concerns. Along with eating more foods high in soluble fiber, Fiber Choice® can make consuming more dietary fiber easy and delicious!

 

1 Statistics About Diabetes. American Diabetes Association. http://www.diabetes.org/diabetes-basics/statistics/. Published March 22, 2018. Accessed March 6, 2019.
2 Jibrin, Janis. How does soluble fiber affect the glycemic index to help with diabetes? Sharecare.  https://www.sharecare.com/health/diabetes/soluble-fiber-help-with-diabetes
3 What is the Glycemic Index (GI)? Sharecare.https://www.sharecare.com/health/carbohydrate-body-impact/what-is-glycemic-index

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