Why is Fibre Important for my Health?
Fibre is an essential part of the human diet. Fibre is made up of indigestible parts of plants, and different types of fibres play different roles. They are complex carbohydrates that pass unchanged (and unabsorbed) through our stomach and small intestines, as the human digestive system does not possess the enzymes needed to break them apart.
Depending on their characteristics, fibre can modify in a different way the gut environment and it is generally recommended to eat diverse sources of fibres to gain the most benefit.
Some fibres are partially or completely fermented by the gut microbiota inhabiting the large intestine, producing interesting metabolites (e.g. short-chain fatty acids) and impacting the gut microbiota composition.
Experts from the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), as well as national authorities in many EU countries, recommend a daily intake of 25-30g of dietary fibre for normal bowel function in adults. In addition, there is some scientific evidence suggesting that there are health benefits associated with higher intakes of dietary fibre in adults, such as improved insulin sensitivity, lower blood sugar levels, reduced appetite and various benefits for digestion and gut health.
There are two main categories of fibre: Soluble and Insoluble.