Most of the time we associate fiber with bowel health, especially constipation. However, fiber has a prominent role in lowering hypertension, weight, and cholesterol and has been shown to lower the risk of heart disease later in life. We need between 25 and 40 grams a day of fiber and this can easily be achieved by filling two thirds of your plate with fruit, vegetables, whole grains, beans, seeds and nuts. Fresh fiber is the best so fresh whole unrefined foods are what we should be consuming.
Another role for fiber that is not well known is that while we cannot digest fiber ourselves, the healthy bacteria such as acidophilus and bifidobacter that live in the digestive track depend on it for food. Without sufficient fiber those microbes that inhabit our intestinal tracts that we need will diminish and others that we'd like to hold in check will flourish. This is another reason why what we eats is so important.