The Amount of Fiber in Many Foods

Kraig J. Rice

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Chart of the Fiber Quantity of Most Foods Chart of Small Amounts of Fiber
Some Soluble and Insoluble Foods Some Questions and Answers

I want to eat healthy and I am sure that you want to eat healthy, too. One way we can do this is to eat a minimum of 35 grams of fiber in our food every day. I try to keep count but it is really tough for me to get to that 35 mark as most of the foods that I eat are so processed that there is very little nutrition or fiber in them. Consequently, I sometimes fall short of my goal. Since I am a male I like to eat a lot of food. To help me with my fiber intake, I created this chart. I thought I may as well share it with you, too, in case you are interested in reaching this same goal. In this first chart the amount of food is usually around 1 cup as this is the most likely way that I am going to eat it. Sometimes I will eat a whole can of beans or other items so I list the amount of fiber content by the can rather than by the cup. Nevertheless, please check the labels on packages, bottles, or food containers that you purchase in order to determine the amount of the food fiber in that container.


Type of Food(s): Portion(s) or Amount of Food: Amount of Fiber:
Almonds, shelled 28 nuts (roasted & salted) 3 grams
Artichoke 1 large (cooked) 4 1/2 grams
Apple (fresh) 1 large fruit 4 grams
Applesauce, canned 1 cup 4 grams
Apricot (fresh) 1 large apricot 1 gram
Asparagus, canned one 14 ounce can from the store 2 1/2 grams
Avocado, large (also guacamole) 1 fruit or 1 cup guacamole 5 1/2 grams
Bacon Bits 12 pieces (for your salad) 1 gram
Banana (fresh fruit) 1 medium length 3 grams
Banana Chips (dehydrated) 4 ounces (1/2 of an 8 oz. bag) 4 grams
Barley, cooked 1 cup 13 1/2
Beans, black cooked 1 cup (canned) 14 grams
Beans, garbanzo (chickpeas) 1 cup (cooked) 12 grams
Beans, green 1 cup 4 grams
Beans, kidney (cooked) 1 cup 19 grams
Beans, Lima (cooked) 1 cup 12 grams
Beans, navy, and white 1 cup (cooked) 16 grams
Beans, pinto canned one 15 ounce can 22 1/2 grams
Beans, red & Great Northern 1 cup (cooked) 16 grams
Beets, red (cooked) 1 cup 5 grams
Bell peppers, raw & red sliced 1 pepper or 1 cup 2 grams
Bisquick (original) 1 cup (white & powdery) 3 grams
Blackberries 1 cup 9 grams
Blueberries (fresh or frozen) 1 cup 4 grams
Bread, whole grain 1 slice from the loaf 2 grams
Broccoli, raw or steamed 1 cup 8 grams
Brussel sprouts, cooked 1 cup 4 grams
Buckwheat groats (Kasha) 1 cup 9 1/2 grams
Bulgur, wheat (cooked) 1 cup 9 1/2 grams
Cabbage, cooked 1 cup (not cold slaw) 3 grams
Candy Bar 1 Fiber One bar 9 grams
Cantaloupe, yellow 1/2 cantaloupe 2 grams
Carrots (raw or cooked) 1 cup 7 grams
Cauliflower, boiled 1 cup 2 1/2
Celery, raw 1/2 cup (with no peanut butter) 4 grams
Cereal, Cream of Wheat 3 tablespoons or 1 packet 1 gram
Cereal, Post Great Grains 3/4 cup for breakfast 5 grams
Cherries, fresh 1 cup 2 grams
Clam chowder one 18 ounce can from the store 6 grams
Collard greens, boiled 1 cup 5 1/2 grams
Cornbread (thick cooked) 2 1/2 inch square 3 1/2 grams
Corn on the cob (cooked) 1 large ear of corn 5 grams
Corn, whole Kernel one 15 ounce can 7 1/2 grams
Crackers, Triscuit 6 crackers out of the box 3 grams
Cranberry sauce (canned) 1/2 cup 4 grams
Dates (pitted from store) 5 dried dates 3 grams
Eggplant, cooked with tomatoes 2 thick slices 4 grams
Fennel, raw & cut up 1 cup 2 1/2 grams
Fig, fresh 1 large fig 2 grams
Grain, spelt (cooked) 1 cup 17 grams
Grapefruit 1/2 large fruit 1 1/2 grams
Grapes, white, red, or black 20 raw grapes 1 gram
Kale, Swiss chard, turnip greens 1 cup cooked 8 grams
Honeydew melon 1/2 melon 1 1/2 grams
Kiwifruit 1 piece of this fruit 2 1/2 grams
Lentils, brown or red 1 cup cooked 14 grams
Lettuce, (leaf, Boston, iceberg) 1 1/4 cups 1 gram
Macaroni, whole wheat only 1 cup cooked 5 1/2 grams
Meatless burger patties (frozen) 1 burger pattie (out of a box of 4) 5 grams
Muffins, whole wheat only 1 entire muffin 3 1/2 grams
Mustard greens, fresh or boiled 1 cup 3 grams
Noodles, egg (whole wheat only) 1 cup cooked 5 1/2 grams
Oats, cooked (whole grain) 1 cup 4 grams
Okra (fresh or frozen) 1 cup cooked 3 grams
Onion (fresh) 1 large softball size 3 grams
Orange (fresh fruit) 1 large orange 7 grams
Oranges, mandarin one 11 ounce can from the store 2 grams
Papaya (fresh) 1 large fruit 5 1/2 grams
Parsnip, cut up 1 large one cooked 2 1/2 grams
Passion Fruit, purple 1 cup of this fresh fruit 24 1/2 grams
Peach (fresh fruit) 1 large peach 2 1/2 grams
Peanuts, party (canned & salted) 30 pieces (ready to eat) 2 grams
Pear, fresh 1 large pear 4 grams
Peas, Green cooked 1 cup 13 1/2 grams
Peas, split, cooked 1 cup 13 grams
Peas, sweet (green) one 15 ounce can 10 1/2 grams
Pineapple (fresh) 1 cup (cut into cubes) 2 grams
Plums (fresh fruit) 1 piece of large fruit 1 gram
Popcorn (light butter) 1 bag (microwave air popped) 6 grams
Potato, white (baked with skin) 1 large one with no chives 5 grams
Potato, sweet (with skin) 1 large (boiled or baked) 5 grams
Potatoes, fresh white mashed 1 cup (with milk added) 6 grams
Pot Pie 7 ounce (frozen from store) 3 grams
Prunes (fresh fruit) 1 piece of large fresh fruit 1 gram
Raisins (dried) 1/2 cup 8 grams
Raspberries 1 cup fresh or frozen 8 1/2 grams
Rhubarb (cooked) 1/2 cup with sugar added 3 grams
Rice, brown cooked 1/2 cup 2 grams
Rutabaga (like a turnip) 1/2 cup 3 grams
Rye, whole grain 1 cup (cooked) 24 grams
Soybeans, cooked 1 cup 10 grams
Spinach, cooked 1 cup 4 1/2 grams
Squash, acorn 1 cup 10 grams
Squash, summer yellow 1 cup (cooked in slices) 4 grams
Squash, winter 1 cup (baked in cubes or mashed) 7 grams
Squash, zucchini 1 cup (raw or cooked) 6 grams
Strawberries (fresh or frozen) 1 cup (no sugar added) 3 grams
Sunflower Seeds (roasted) 1 cup 8 grams
Swiss chard, cooked 1 cup 3 1/2 grams
Tomato (fresh) 1 large tomato 2 grams
Turnip greens, raw or cooked 1 cup (pressed down) 4 grams
TV dinner 9 ounce (frozen from store) 5 grams
Watermelon 1 thick cut slice 3 grams

Small Measurements of Fiber in Foods

Some common measurements:
The abbreviation for teaspoon is tsp The abbreviation for tablespoon is tbsp
3 teaspoons= 1 tablespoon 4 tablespoons= 1/4 cup
8 tablespoons= 1/2 cup 12 tablespoons= 3/4 cup
16 tablespoons= 1 cup

Type of Food(s): Portion(s) or Amount of Food: Amount of Fiber:
Apple Butter (in a jar) 1 tablespoon 0 grams
Bran Meal 1 tablespoon 2 grams
Brazil Nuts 1 large nut (shelled) 1 gram
Catsup, tomato 3 tablespoons 1/2 gram
Chestnuts 1 large nut 1 gram
Coconut, dried & shredded 1 tablespoon (sweetened or not) 3 grams
Maraschino Cherries 30 cherries (in a jar) 0 grams
Olives, black, pitted (canned) 3 olives 0 grams
Parsley, chopped 2 tablespoons 1/2 gram
Peanut Butter (natural) 1 tablespoon 1 gram
Relish, sweet pickle 2 tablespoons 1 gram
Walnuts, English 1 tablespoon (shelled & chopped) 1 gram
Wheat Germ (in jar or package) 1 tablespoon 1 gram

Some Differences Between
Soluble & Insoluble Fiber

There is one of two different kinds of fiber found in foods. Food scientists label these as soluble and insoluble fiber. Is one better than the other? Not really as each is important for health, digestion, and the preventing of certain diseases. What's the difference?

Generally speaking, soluble fiber breaks down in water, absorbs bile and waste, and helps lower cholesterol. It is important to help make the bowels function correctly, and, like garlic, it helps promote friendly bacteria in the digestive tract.

Some examples of soluble fiber include:
Fruits such as apples and bananas.
Vegetables such as broccoli and carrots.
Legumes such as peas and beans.
And other foods such as oats, oat bran, rye, barley, berries, potatoes, and brown rice.

Generally speaking, insoluble fiber does not break down in water and helps with a daily regularity of a bowel movement. This kind of fiber is also called roughage. It helps hold onto the water in your digestive system. It helps use this water to move waste through your intestine and out of your body. Also, like garlic, it helps maintain a good bacterial balance in your colon.

Some examples of insoluble fiber include:
Fruit peels such as is found on tomatoes.
Vegetable peels such as is found on baked potatoes including green beans, cauliflower, zucchini squash, and celery.
And other foods such as whole grains, bran, nuts, seeds, fruits, and legumes.

Some Questions and Answers:

1) Question:
How many grams of fiber should I eat every day?
A total of 35 grams of fiber every day.

2) Question:
I drink an orange flavored powder mixed with water to give me more fiber. It states on the label that it is made from psyllium husk fiber. What is psyllium?
Psyllium is a plant high in fiber content. Some folks take psyllium seeds or psyllium husks, grind them up into a powder, and then add a flavoring in order to sell it to you and me.

3) Question:
I have looked at different fiber charts and many times the fiber amount varies from food to food. How come do the fiber charts NOT always agree on the amount of fiber for each food?
Each chart usually gives a general rather than a specific set of guidelines for the fiber amount of foods. Why? Because there are differences such as whether the food is canned or fresh, processed or non-processed, whether each food has additives such as sugar or corn starch or other food stuffs, the size of the fruit such as a medium sized versus a large sized, or various kinds of the same fruit such as Gravenstein apples versus Washington delicious apples, etc. Important as dietary fiber is, food scientists have not yet been able to regulate a specific total content of fiber in all foods, especially vegetables and fruits, due to the complexity of all variables.

4) Question:
I get tired of eating all of this rabbit food. Give me my meat and potatoes any time. Can you give me one good reason why I should eat rabbit food?
This rabbit food may help you when it comes to the avoidance of constipation, hemorrhoids, diverticulitis (the inflammation of pouches in the digestive tract), and irritable bowel syndrome. This rabbit food may also help you lower your cholesterol, and reduce your risk of coronary heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and certain types of cancer.

5) Question:
I like to eat grapefruit to help get the fiber I need, and, besides, it helps keep me slim. Do you see any drawbacks to that?
Generally speaking, eating healthy, drinking plenty of water, getting plenty of sleep, and getting plenty of exercise is great. However, do not eat grapefruit if you are taking most anti-depressant pills lest you get a drug interaction in your body and start feeling really bad. Other than that, eating fiber-rich foods may aid in your digestion, may help with the absorption of nutrients, and generally helps you to feel fuller longer after a meal (which may help curb overeating and thus weight gain).

6) Question:
Do you have any idea how this "fiber business" works inside of my body to help keep me healthy?
One author put it this way: "Since fiber is not digested in the body, it simply follows along the digestive tract binding to water, cholesterol, and carbohydrates. By binding to cholesterol-making compounds as they move through the body, fiber causes less overall blood cholesterol, which may improve heart health. As fiber binds to other carbohydrates, it slows down the absorption of these carbohydrates. This helps prevent unhealthy spikes in blood sugar levels and may decrease a personís risk for diabetes. Fiber also binds to water while passing through the digestive tract, which improves the frequency and density of bowel movements. This decreases the risk of digestive disorders."

7) Question:
How come processed foods contain very little fiber?
The raw state of foods usually contain much fiber. However, a lot of vitamins, nutrients, and fiber is often lost when foods are processed. Processing strips the wheat germ from wheat that is used to make your bread. Juices are boiled and strained and canned for convenience sake. Many fruit juices and vegetable juices originally started out as high-fiber foods, but after processing, ended up with virtually no fiber content. This is a sad state of affairs in America. One person may say that they can take a one-a-day vitamin to make up for the vitamin shortages in their food but this isn't usually the case with fiber. Once fiber is gone, it is gone. One can take fiber supplements but it would be better if you got it from your daily food intake.

8) Question:
What about medications and dietary fiber?
One author had this to say: "Dietary fiber, especially the fiber found in fruit, beans, and oat bran, reduces the absorption of a class of cholesterol-lowering medications called HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors (for example, lovastatin) by binding to the drug in the gastrointestinal tract. Dietary fiber decreases the absorption of hydralazine, digoxin, and lithium. Diets high in dietary fiber may improve glucose control in people with type 2 diabetes, thereby reducing the dose of insulin or oral glucose lowering medications needed to control blood sugar. Certain medications, including pain medications (for example, codeine) and calcium channel blockers (for example, verapamil) can cause constipation. Increased intake of dietary fiber can reduce the constipation caused by these medications."

Any information on this web page is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnose, treat, or cure any diseases. Please consult your doctor about any foods that you have questions about.

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