Why Fibre is Important in a Gluten-free Diet

As I tuck into my gluten-free bagel this Tuesday it reminded me of the all important topic of fibre in a Coeliac or gluten-free diet.

I often remind myself how important it is that I make allowances for both soluble and insoluble fibre in my diet, given that a gluten-free diet can be low in wholegrain and fibre due the removal of certain cereals from the diet.

Both soluble and insoluble fibre help our bodies in different ways and are important to our diet.

Soluble fibre is able to be digested by the body and plays the role of helping to reduce the amount of cholesterol in your blood. Examples of foods of this nature include:

  • Golden Linseed
  • Gluten-free oats
  • Fruit and vegetables
  • Lentils and beans

Insoluble fibre is not able to be digested and passes through the gut without being broken down. Essentially it helps to move other foods through the digestive tract. Examples of foods of this nature include:

  • Nuts and Seeds
  • Gluten-free whole grains (e.g. corn, brown rice, buckwheat)
  • Dried fruits

We can provide good sources of fibre to our bodies by eating fresh fruit and vegetables, including eating the skins.

It is well known that the UK population do not eat enough fibre in the diet, however if you are planning on increasing your intake, be careful not to increase your intake suddenly as this can cause gas, cramps and bloating!

Also, if you suffer from IBS, you may need to modify the type and amount of fibre in your diet based on the symptoms you experience, so this is best to do with advice from dietician/GP.

I have included the current RDA (Recommended Daily Allowances) for fibre intake below.

  • 30g/day adults
  • 25g/day 11-16 year olds
  • 20g/day 5-11 year olds
  • 15g/day 2-5 year olds

Hopefully I have given you food for thought as increasing your fibre intake may be a great way to keep your body in balance nutritionally!

Gluten-free Sister G