Laxatives are a great tool to have in your weight loss arsenal. If you’re looking to lose weight, you might be wondering how you should be using them. Let’s dive into the science of what makes up a good diet and the unique properties of each type of laxative so that you can better understand how they work and when you should be using them.
Dietary fiber is one of the four food groups that make up the foundational pillars of a healthy diet. It’s actually quite simple – we need fiber to move food through our digestive system. It helps ensure that our stool is normal and that we eliminate toxins as we digest food. There are various types of dietary fiber including:
- Psyllium fiber
- Fibers from Plantain
- Hulls from Beans
- Gums from Fruit
It’s crucial to note that only foods rich in dietary fiber should be consumed. This includes whole grains, vegetables, and fruits. The fiber content of these foods make them extremely filling and help maintain a healthy weight. If you’re not used to eating this way, it can be a challenge to consume sufficient amounts of dietary fiber without getting bloated. That being said, everyone has different dietary preferences which means there’s no “one size fits all” approach when it comes to dieting.
Water-Soluble Dietary Fiber
Water-soluble dietary fiber dissolves in water. This type of fiber is often derived from plants. The most common source is wheat. In general, dietary fiber helps improve the texture and feel of your stool. It also helps regulate digestion. When you have sufficient amounts of dietary fiber in your diet, you’ll notice that your stool becomes firmer and less liquid. This can also help prevent constipation. While wheat and other plant-based fibers are a fantastic source of dietary fiber, they’re not the only options. There are actually many different types of fibers that come from animals including:
- Horse gram (Hengstleria robusta)
- Buckwheat (Fagopyrum esculentum)
- Beet fiber (Beta vulgaris)
- Duckweed (Lepidium sativum)
- Cocoa powder (Theobroma cacao)
Unfortunately, not all dietary fibers are created equal. Some can even cause problems. The most common source of fiber-related problems is psyllium fiber. This type of fiber is extremely water-soluble and often found in household products. It’s often prescribed for asthma and other lung conditions which makes it very available. The downside is that it can lead to intestinal problems. When eaten in excess, it has the potential to cause severe diarrhea. This makes it an extremely dangerous food component to have if you’re trying to lose weight. Even more so, given its propensity to disrupt digestion and increase colon bulkiness. In general, be very careful when selecting dietary fiber supplements or food sources as there are a lot of pitfalls out there.
Lignin is another important food component that aids in digestion. This substance is primarily found in plant cell walls. It’s an important part of the human diet and we need it to stay healthy. This compound gives plants their rigidity and strength and it’s what makes up the bulk of wood. In general, when we ingest the fiber and lignin contained in plant material, we can experience better digestion which leads to increased nutrient absorption and weight loss. When we eat foods rich in lignin, they fill us up and make us feel fuller for longer. This can lead to overeating which ultimately contributes to weight gain.
Lignin is also important for our immune system. It provides protection against harmful microorganisms such as bacteria and fungi. Without adequate amounts of lignin in our diet, our bodies cannot properly defend us from these intruders. This can lead to nutrient deficiencies including vitamin C, A, and E. In addition, there’s evidence that shows that consuming lignin-rich plant material can also improve the flavor of our food. It has a distinct tang that some people find appealing. Unfortunately, since most people don’t get enough fiber in their diet, they often end up overeating since solid food is more available than nutrients. The solution here is to increase the fiber content of your diet which will make you feel fuller for longer. This eventually leads to weight loss.
All in all, we need fiber in our diet to stay healthy. When you’re looking to lose weight, you should be aiming to get at least 10-15 grams of fiber per day. This will help establish healthy bowels and prevent all sorts of digestion-related problems. If you’re not getting the results you want, try increasing your fiber intake or looking for a different source of fiber.
Also known as “fatty acids” or “fats,” triglycerides are another important part of the human diet. These are compounds that contain a glycerol backbone and three fatty acids. The three fatty acids can be derived from plant or animal sources. They can also be combined and re-created as scientists find new ways to produce them. In general, triglycerides are a major source of fuel for our bodies. They help provide fuel for our muscles which allow us to workout harder and longer. They’re also an important part of our natural oils which allow us to waterproof our bodies and keep warm in the winter. Let’s look at how they work:
- Muscles need fuel to work properly. When they don’t get enough energy from food, they start breaking down protein stores in their bodies which can lead to muscle degradation. This affects our overall appearance and makes us feel worse.
- Waterproofing our bodies is critical for keeping cool in the summer and warm in the winter. Natural oils including triglycerides allow us to do this through our skin. When our bodies are deprived of these nutrients, it becomes harder for our skin to keep our body at a constant temperature which again, makes us feel lousy.
- Toxic overload occurs when our bodies are constantly bombarded with toxins. This happens when we’re exposed to pollution or eat foods containing pesticides. When our bodies are hit with too much toxic material, it weakens our immune system and makes us more susceptible to sickness and disease.
Although there are many different types of dietary fiber, the above information should give you a good idea of what makes for a healthy diet. There’s no “one size fits all” approach when it comes to losing weight because everyone has different needs. Some people thrive on a diet of fruits and veggies while others need a little more protein. As long as you understand the science behind what makes up a healthy diet, you can tailor make a plan to meet your individual needs.