In this time of organic, gluten-free, non-GMO flaxseed muffins, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by food choices. We have more options than ever — and more chances to wonder if we’re really eating right. Some choices matter, but other things aren’t nearly as important as they may seem. When building a healthy diet, it helps to know: What things should you sweat over, and which just aren’t worth the worry?
Fiber: Sure, a diet high in fiber — the indigestible roughage from fruits, vegetables and grains — will help keep you regular. But that’s just a bonus. Dietary fiber protects the heart: A 2013 study in the journal BMJ estimated that each 7 grams of fiber a day cut the risk of heart disease by about 10%. Importantly, fiber also creates feelings of fullness, making it easier to stick to a reasonable diet.