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Prebiotic Fibre & IBS

  • 4 min read

Prebiotic Fibre & IBS 

We talk a lot about probiotics, but if you’re really brushed up on your gut health then you’ll also have heard about prebiotics.

Scientists have defined prebiotics as “a substrate that is selectively utilised by host microorganisms conferring a health benefit”.[1] To put it simply, fibre feeds the existing good bacteria that live in your gut. They act as a fertiliser for our microbes, fuelling their growth, diversity and activity. [2]

As well as supporting your digestive health, a diet that is high in fibre can reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, colorectal cancer and improve your skin and sleep. [3]

However, people with IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) and other tricky digestive issues can find that some types of fibre can cause flare ups and actually worsen their symptoms. 

That’s why we created Biomel Low FODMAP Fibre+, an advanced gut health powder that supports your gut health without any of the ingredients that may irritate your gut.

In this article we will take you through the basics on fibre and prebiotics and highlight some easy and delicious ways that you can increase your daily fibre intake without triggering a flare up.

Fibre can be good for IBS

People who are experiencing IBS symptoms may be recommended to follow a Low FODMAP diet. This restricts the number of Fermentable Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides and Polyols (FODMAPs) in your diet, because the small intestine sometimes struggles to absorb them.[4] Cutting out these foods however can really limit the amount of fibre in your diet.

Therefore, it is still important to be able to find a way to continue to meet your recommended daily intake of fibre if you have IBS, to fuel your gut microbiome powerhouse.

That’s why we have created prebiotic fibres that are also suitable for people following the Low FODMAP diet or for those with sensitive digestive systems. Biomel Low FODMAP Fibre+ contains a blend of gentle prebiotic fibres such as gluten-free oats, apple fibre, rice bran, guar fibre and soluble corn fibre alongside key digestive enzymes that help give your gut a helping hand to break down your food and reduce painful digestive symptoms.

Importantly our Low FODMAP Fibre+ doesn’t contain any chicory root (also known as chicory inulin) which is a common ingredient that can trigger IBS symptoms.

Our Low FODMAP Fibre+ is a great way to benefit from prebiotics effectiveness even if you have IBS.

LOVE YOUR GUT TIP: You may see the terms gut microbiome, gut microbiota and gut flora used interchangeably. They all mean slightly different things, but generally refer to everything that lives in your gut, including beneficial gut bacteria, prebiotics and genetic material.

How much fibre should I have each day?

Probably much more then you’re getting currently. The UK government guidelines recommends adults need at least 30 grams of dietary fibre. Yet most people in the UK do not eat enough fibre. In fact, a recent national diet and nutrition survey (NDNS) suggests that only 10% of UK adults are achieving their recommended daily fibre intake. [5]

Easy ways to increase daily fibre intake

Life has got even busier since lockdown restrictions have eased, so we need to find an easier way to get in our recommended daily intake of fibre. 

Biomel Prebiotic Fibre’s contains almost 5 g of fibre per serving – the same amount of fibre as two slices of wholemeal bread. This means by adding one serving to your morning porridge and one serving with over your afternoon yogurt, you will have already met 50% of your RDI of fibre.

Instead of making overhaul of your diet – which can be overwhelming – it’s often easier to make small habitual changes to the foods you already eat. This way, you can make a lasting impact on your health, with minimal effort. So, to help we’ve highlighted several key store cupboard foods that are naturally high in fibre and have incorporated them into your daily meals, snacks, and drinks so that you don’t have to.

 Fabulous Fibre Breakfast

½ cup of oats (this contains 4g of fibre)

350 ml m*lk or water, or a mixture of the two

One sliced banana (1g)

Topped with one serving of Biomel Low FODMAP Fibre+ (4.7g)

Fibre Loaded Lunch

A baked sweet potato cut in half with the skin on (4g) topped with half a can of drained chickpeas (8.3g), 1 avocado (3g), ½ lemon juice, salt, and pepper.

Fibre Fun Dinner

Mixed vegetable curry cooked with onions and spices (3.3g) with wholegrain rice (2.8g).

Fibre Fuel Snacks

A handful of nuts (3.5g) or your favourite yogurt topped with a serving of Biomel Low FODMAP Fibre+ (4.7g).

Fibre-Loving Drinks

Your favourite smoothie or m*lk blended with a serving of Biomel Low FODMAP Fibre+ (4.7g).

Total fibre intake: 38g

Replacing small changes in your daily eating habits will quickly increase your fibre intake. Here are some of our top swaps that are also recommended by the NHS [6]:
  • Swap from white to wholegrain bread
  • Keep the skin on your vegetables (not forgetting to wash them)
  • Add pulses like beans, lentils or chickpeas to curries and salad
  • Sprinkle Biomel Prebiotic Fibre+ over your morning cereal

Why we love fibre

Genetics play a relatively minor role in shaping our gut microbiome. Your dietary choices have such a powerful influence on our gut health through a range of lifestyle choices.[7]

Recent research has shown that diets high in fibre from a diverse range of plant-based sources are linked with greater gut microbiome diversity which is a well-agreed marker of a healthy gut and overall health & well-being within the scientific community.[8]

It also has been shown that a high fibre diet can reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, colorectal cancer, and many other health benefits.[9]

Your gut is at the heart of your health and making sure you have enough fibre in your diet is a great way to look after it.

 

Trusted Sources

[1] https://www.nature.com/articles/nrgastro.2017.75

[2] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6463098/

[3]https://www.thelancet.com/article/S0140-6736(18)31809-9/fulltext

[4] https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/j.1440-1746.2009.06149.x 

[5]https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/in-depth/fiber/art-20043983

[6] https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/eat-well/how-to-get-more-fibre-into-your-diet/ 

[7] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3705355/

[8] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3577372/ 

[9] https://www.thelancet.com/article/S0140-6736(18)31809-9/fulltext

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