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Happy Heart's Flavorful High-Fiber Recipes

Happy Heart loves fiberBy Liz Moore, RD, LDN

Are you eating enough fiber? For adults 50 years and younger, the recommended daily intake of fiber is 38 grams for men and 25 grams for women, according to Institute of Medicine. Men and women older than 50 are advised to consume 30 and 21 grams of fiber per day, respectively.

In food terms, some elements of a high-fiber diet might include 1 cup of oatmeal (4 grams), 1 banana (3 grams), 1 cup of raspberries (8 grams), 2 slices of whole-wheat bread (4 grams), 1/4 cup almonds (3 grams).

You’ve probably already heard about the health benefits of a high-fiber diet: it may help lower cholesterol levels, regulate blood sugar, and lower the risk of heart disease, according to the American Heart Association. Fiber-rich foods are also great for weight loss because they are low in calories and keep you feeling full.

Luckily, fiber is found in a wide variety of foods, so your diet doesn’t have to be bland. We came up with the delicious recipes below that are full of fiber to keep your heart, blood vessels and stomach happy. Start your day with cinnamon steel cut oatmeal — it’s packed with both fiber and protein to keep you satisfied throughout the day. For lunch, try the bulgur and lentil salad, which combines two great sources of fiber — whole grains and beans. The quinoa with sweet potato and beans is a tasty meal that is high in fiber, protein, iron, magnesium, riboflavin and vitamins A and C.

Cinnamon Steel Cut Oatmeal

cinnamon steel cut oatmealServes 4


1 cup dry steel cut oats 
1/2 cup skim milk
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp almond extract


Bring 3 1/2 cups water to a boil and stir in oats. Cook until softened, about 20 to 30 minutes. Stir in milk, cinnamon and almond extract. Other toppings can be added to your liking: nuts, seeds, dried fruit, etc.

Nutrition Facts: Total calories per serving: 175; Total fat: 3g; Saturated fat: 0.5g; Total Cholesterol: 0mg; Sodium: 50mg; Total Carbohydrate: 35g; Total fiber: 5g; Sugar: 2g; Protein: 7g

Bulgur and Lentil Salad

bulgur and lentil saladServes 6


1 cup brown lentils
1 1/2 cups medium grained bulgur
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 onion, diced 
1/2 cup celery, sliced thin
3 tsp dried rosemary
Pepper to taste


Pour lentils into a pan and fill with water about an inch higher than the lentils. Bring water to a boil and simmer lentils about 15 to 20 minutes until tender. Drain water and set aside.

Bring 3 cups of water to a boil, add bulgur and reduce heat. Simmer for 10 to 15 minutes or until tender. Drain if necessary.

In a skillet, heat the olive oil and sauté the onion, celery and rosemary until tender. Add the lentils and bulgur to this mixture and stir well. Serve hot or cold.

Nutrition Facts: Total calories per serving: 209; Total fat: 4.5g; Saturated fat: 0.5g; Total Cholesterol: 0mg; Sodium: 10mg; Total Carbohydrate: 36g; Total fiber: 10g; Sugar: 1g; Protein: 8g

Quinoa with Sweet Potatoes and Beans

quinoa with sweet potato and beansServes 5


1 cup quinoa
1 sweet potato, diced
1 1/2 cups canned black beans, rinsed and drained
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp chili powder 


Bring 2 cups of water to a boil. Add quinoa, lower heat and simmer about 20 minutes or until all of the water is absorbed.

Preheat oven to 450°F. Put sweet potato in a bowl and coat with 1 Tbsp oil. Place in single layer on a cookie sheet and roast for about 15 minutes or until tender.

Combine quinoa, sweet potato, beans and spices in a bowl.

Nutrition Facts: Total calories per serving: 157; Total fat: 4g; Saturated fat: 0g; Total Cholesterol: 0mg; Sodium: 11mg; Total Carbohydrate: 25g; Total fiber: 6.5g; Sugar: 1.5g; Protein: 7g

Elisabeth (Liz) Moore, RD, LDNElisabeth (Liz) Moore, RD, LDN, is our resident guru in heart-healthy nutrition. She is a registered dietitian for BIDMC's CardioVascular Institute (CVI) and sees patients in BIDMC's outpatient nutrition clinic and the CVI's Cardiovascular Health and Lipid Center. Moore received her BS degree in human nutrition from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst.

Above content provided by the CardioVascular Institute at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. For advice about your medical care, consult your doctor.

Posted June 2014

Contact Information

CardioVascular Institute at
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
330 Brookline Avenue
Boston, MA 02215

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