ELi5 Fiber. Why is not a vitamin? What does it do?

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Is there any easy analogy to understand how much fiber do I need? Why is it sometimes referred to in a negative way when its in excess

In: Biology

3 Answers

Anonymous 0 Comments

Because fiber has literally no nutritional value – its importance to a healthy diet is literally on account of its physical properties. It’s basically an abrasive that scrubs you from the inside.

Anonymous 0 Comments

You experience very severe problems including death if you are deficient in any vitamin for a long enough time. That doesn’t happen with fibre. It’s possible to eat no fibre for the rest of your life and be healthy. That’s why it’s not a vitamin.

Anonymous 0 Comments

Vitamins are molecules that your body needs in small quantities, but as a rule of thumb it can’t produce them on its own. They are absorbed in your intestine and enter the bloodstream, they aren’t caloric but your body uses them for other processes.

Fibers are molecules that your body can’t digest and absorb, so they go in and come out mostly unchanged. They are useful because they change the composition and texture of your feces, letting them flow better but also making them more solid.

There are two types of fiber, soluble and insoluble. Iirc soluble fibers make your feces flow better in your intestine, while insoluble fibers make your feces more solid. If you have trouble pooping you need soluble fibers, if your poop is too liquid or dispersed you need more insoluble fibers.

Hope this helps.