Does Fiber Help You Lose Weight?

  • Medical Editor: William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

Ask the experts

I recently was hospitalized for diverticulitis and was told by my doctor to begin a high-fiber diet as well as lose about 30 pounds. I have been trying to do this. I have increased my fiber and try to stay on a low-fat diet. I haven't lost anything in the month I have been on this. Is it possible to eat too much fiber? Would that keep me from losing weight?

Doctor's response

Most fiber products have little caloric value so it is unlikely that the fiber is contributing to your difficulty losing weight. In theory, increasing fiber intake could help you to lose weight. Fiber can make you feel full and reduce your intake of food. The recommended amount of fiber is 30-35 grams per day. Amounts larger than that may lead to gas and abdominal discomfort. Losing weight often is not easy.

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Reviewed on 1/11/2018