Fiber-Fill Your Life!

Why is fiber so good for you?

  1. It lowers your cholesterol
  2. It keeps you full for longer, so it can help you lose weight by decreasing hunger throughout the day
  3. It helps regulate your blood sugar and keeps your insulin levels from spiking
  4. It adds bulk to, and thickness, your digestive waste. Fiber makes your GI tract work harder to push everything down the length of your intestines (which, by the way, are 30 feet long!). All those muscle contractions burn calories and even some fat.

Remember, fiber works best when combined with water, so make sure to drink plenty of water!

Foods high in soluble fiber reduce cholesterol and blood glucose levels:

  • Whole oats
  • Legumes (peas, beans)
  • Apples
  • Citrus
  • Carrots
  • Barley

Foods high in insoluble fiber promote movement of nutrients through your GI tract:

  • Whole grains
  • Whole wheat flour
  • Wheat bran
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Beans
  • Vegetables—especially dark, leafy greens and cruciferous vegetables like cauliflower and broccoli

High Fiber Recipe: Southwestern Beef and Bean Wraps

Southwestern Beef and Bean Burger Wraps

Adapted from Eating Well 

Serves: 4

Ingredients:

  • 12 ounces lean ground beef
  • 1 cup refried beans
  • ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon chopped pickled jalapenos (optional)
  • 1 avocado
  • ½ cup prepared salsa
  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder OR 2-3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 whole-wheat tortillas**
  • 2 cups shredded romaine lettuce
  • ½ cup shredded cheese (pepper jack, or cheese of your choice)
  • 1 lime, cut into 4 wedges

Directions:

  1. Position oven rack in upper third of oven and preheat broiler
  2. Coat broiler pan with cooking spray
  3. Gently combine ground beef, beans, cilantro and jalapenos in a medium bowl. Shape into 5X2″ oblong patties and place on the prepared broiler pan (makes about 4 patties)
  4. Broil the patties to desired doneness, about 12-14 minutes
  5. Meanwhile, mash together avocado, salsa, and garlic in a small bowl
  6. Place tortillas on a clean work surface. Spread each with avocado mixture, then sprinkle with lettuce and cheese. Top each with a burger and roll into a wrap. Serve immediately with lime wedges.

**Be sure to get “whole wheat/whole grain” tortillas. Look at the ingredients and make sure “whole wheat” or “whole grain” is in the first two ingredients. La Tortilla Factory makes an excellent high fiber, whole grain tortilla called “Smart & Delicious High Fiber Low Carb.” They are super healthy and have great texture.

Tips and Substitutions:

  • Substitute the beef with ground turkey or chicken breast. Or, keep it vegetarian by using just the beans, or beans and soy (tempeh is best, or you can buy ground soy that tastes a lot like meat.)
  • Use mixed greens instead of romaine lettuce for some extra nutrients
  • Use whole beans instead of refried to reduce fat
  • Substitute the tortilla for a lettuce wrap for a low-carb alternative
  • Add sautéed vegetables (onion, bell pepper, zucchini) to increase the fiber ‘bulk’ and nutrients
  • Try spicing it up: add some cumin, oregano, paprika, cayenne, and/or your favorite Mexican spice blend

Nutrition Facts (based on the original recipe, with no substitutions; depending on the tortilla you choose, this information will vary.)

Per serving:

Calories: 455

Fat: 20g (6g saturated; 7g monounsaturated)

Cholesterol: 62 mg (there will be NO cholesterol if you opt for the vegetarian option)

Carbohydrates: 42g

Protein: 28g

Fiber: 9g

Potassium: 749 mg

WHY THIS RECIPE ROCKS:

  1. Beans, although starchy, are filled with protein and are a great source of fiber
  2. Avocados are filled with monounsaturated or “good” fat
  3. If you opt for a whole grain and high fiber tortilla, you are getting a great serving of nutrient rich grain as well as fiber

How would you make this recipe your own? Share your thoughts below!

Cheers,

the Wheel House Team

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