You know fiber is good for you and that you’re supposed to eat a certain amount of fiber each day. But do you actively include it in your diet?
Dietary fiber—or roughage—is a type of carbohydrate known as a complex carbohydrate.
In its most basic sense, fiber is plant-based foods that can’t be digested or absorbed by your body. Complex carbohydrates such as cellulose, hemicellulose, lignin, pectin, and beta-glucans are more resistant to digestion in the small intestine, so they must instead be fermented by the bacteria in your gut.
They’re also referred to as non-starch polysaccharide (NSP) or structural carbohydrates, and they play an important part in your fiber needs.
There are plenty of fiber-rich, prebiotic foods out there that can help to boost your recommended daily intake. But if you don’t like the taste or texture of these foods, you’re not likely to eat them!
It can also be difficult to source, prepare, and eat exactly the right foods every day to keep your body functioning properly. That’s where fiber supplements come in handy, and that’s why finding the best fiber supplement is important.
A supplement is simple and convenient, and it helps to ensure that you’re getting the right amount of fiber every day without having to plan your menu. Maintaining an adequate fiber intake is one of the best ways to support your microbiome and optimize your gut health.
If you are looking for the best fiber supplement, here are 8 of the best ones I’d recommend.
8 Best Fiber Supplements
1. Now Foods, Whole Psyllium Husks
Psyllium husk is a type of soluble fiber, one of the two fibers vital for the healthy functioning of your digestive system. If you’re looking for the best fiber supplement, you should definitely consider this one.
Psyllium husk forms a gel as it passes through your small intestine, absorbing water and helping move waste through your gut. It also provides a type of ‘food’ for your gut microbiome when it reaches the large intestine.
One of the great things about psyllium husk is that it can treat both diarrhea and constipation. It absorbs extra fluid in the bowel, slowing overactive bowel movements. It also adds bulk to the stool, which helps trigger peristalsis, reducing constipation.
Psyllium husk is tasteless (and calorie-free), so it can be easily added to smoothies or other (cold) flavored beverages. One serving of psyllium husk is a great way to get almost your entire daily fiber needs in one glass!
2. Jarrow Formulas, Prebiotic Inulin FOS Powder
Inulin is a type of soluble fiber made up of fructose molecules. These chains of fructose can’t be broken down in the small intestine, so they’re fermented by the bacteria in your gut.
This makes inulin a fantastic prebiotic: fuel for your beneficial gut bacteria. These bacteria work to turn inulin into short-chain fatty acids that provide nourishment to your cells, as well as allowing your microbiome to thrive.
Taking Inulin FOS powder is an easy way to add fiber and prebiotic goodness to your daily diet. Please note that some fructooligosaccharides (also known as FOS) can also feed some species of ‘bad’ bacteria or yeasts in the gut, so it may not be suitable for everyone.
Inulin FOS Soluble Prebiotic Fibers Powder, 6.3 oz
3. Heather’s Tummy Care, Organic Acacia Senegal Tummy Fiber
Those who are sensitive to inulin or insoluble fibers and struggle to tolerate FOS or psyllium husks may be better off with Acacia Senegal. This is the best fiber supplement for you if you are sensitive to insoluble fibers.
This gentle plant-based substance is a prebiotic with high soluble fiber content and can help manage digestive disorders such as irritable bowel syndrome. It’s also helpful in managing appetite, reducing gut inflammation, alleviating constipation, relieving diarrhea, and improving satiety—without the potential side-effects of other fiber supplements.
This Tummy Fiber helps to support bowel motility in those with a particularly sensitive gut or suffering from IBS-related diarrhea and constipation. By helping to slow colonic fermentation, this formula may also help reduce gas and bloating.
16 Ounce Canister
4. Nature’s Way Glucomannan From Konjac Root
Konjac root is the starchy part of the konjac plant. It’s an excellent dietary fiber called glucomannan, which is often used as a dietary fiber supplement. Glucomannan is an easily digestible soluble dietary fiber that helps move food through the intestines.
It works by absorbing water in the stomach and the gut, adding bulk to stools, and triggering peristalsis (the wave-like movements that push waste through the intestines). This helps to reduce the incidence of constipation while also minimizing gas and bloating.
Glucomannan also appears to be beneficial for those with sensitive bowel function, and studies have shown it can improve bowel transit time and prevent constipation.
1,995 mg per serving, 100 Vcaps
5. Garden of Life, RAW Organic Fiber
If you need both nutrients and fiber, then this might be the best fiber supplement for you. This nourishing blend is an easy way to get a large portion of your daily requirements in one serving.
It contains both soluble and insoluble fiber for maximum benefits, along with organic sprouted seeds, grains, and legumes. This is a good option for those who can’t tolerate heavier fibers such as psyllium.
The beneficial fiber in this supplement help to support the balance of healthy gut flora, as well as keeping your bowel movements regular. It can also help to relieve constipation.
The soluble fiber content triggers the process of fermentation, producing the short-chain fatty acids butyrate, acetate, and propionate. These fatty acids play an important part in many different bodily systems and act as a source of energy for the cells lining your colon.
30 Servings, 15 Organic Superfoods, Probiotics and Omega-3 ALA, 4g Soluble Fiber, 5g Insoluble Fiber for Regularity, Psyllium Free Fiber
6. Garden of Life, Super Seed, Beyond Fiber
This vegetarian supplement provides a nutrient-dense source of dietary fiber with 14 sprouted seeds, grains and legumes. Flaxseed and chia seed are excellent sources of soluble fiber, protein, and omega 3 fatty acids.
It also contains a proprietary blend of probiotics that are designed to replenish gut flora and support healthy intestinal balance. Other ingredients including sprouted legumes and seeds also help regulate bowel function and overall health.
High in fiber, just two servings provide nearly half your daily recommended intake plus 24% of your daily recommended protein.
7. Hyperbiotics Prebiotic, Organic Proprietary Blend
This prebiotic fiber supplement is psyllium free, soy-free, and dairy-free. It contains specific fibers that support your healthy bacteria by helping bacteria get established in your intestine and thrive throughout your digestive tract.
As a ‘fertilizer’ to your gut microbiome, this blend helps to promote the maintenance of good bacteria while supporting healthy digestion, weight management, and metabolism. Acacia Fiber slows the fermentation process, which aids digestive health.
This formula also contains a variety of digestive enzymes plus inulin, FOS, resistant starch, and soluble dietary fiber to support the gut and the growth of ‘friendly’ bacteria. This powder can be easily incorporated into a smoothie or other foods.
13.23oz, 54 Servings | Unflavored Fiber Supplement | Supports Healthy Digestion & Growth of Beneficial Bacteria | Jerusalem Artichoke and Acacia
8. Nutricology ProGreens With Advanced Probiotic Formula
If you struggle to get both vegetables AND fiber into your daily diet, a ready-made blend that contains all of these may be the best fiber supplement for you. ProGreens is a ‘superfood’ formula that contains a host of nutritious fibers, including flaxseed, apple pectin, and fructooligosaccharides (FOS).
It also boasts organic grasses and natural foods rich in the nutrients that aren’t necessarily present in standard vitamin supplements. Along with these greens and mineral-rich sea vegetables, ProGreens provides a healthy dose of adaptogenic herbs and active probiotics, which help soothe the digestive tract and keep the intestines moving properly.
The probiotics are an added bonus to the fiber content, providing support to your gut microbiome and their work in the fermentation process.
Finding the best fiber supplement isn’t easy because it depends on a lot of factors. That’s why we compiled this list of 8 fiber supplements you can find in the market.
Just make sure that you’re getting the right one for a healthier and livelier gut.
Featured photo credit: Anna Pelzer via unsplash.com