What is the difference between soluble and insoluble fiber?
Plant material is made up of dietary fibers. These parts are quite indigestible and they play different roles in the body. They are among the essential components in the diet of human beings.
The core difference between soluble and insoluble fiber is that soluble fiber is the one that can easily dissolve in water and broken down in the colon while insoluble fiber is the one that does not dissolve in water and remain intact as food left to the gastrointestinal tract.
What Are Soluble Fibers?
Soluble fibers comprise plant pectin and gums which are soluble in water. They are broken down into a gel-like substance that helps to improve the digestion process.
The most wonderful thing with soluble fibers is that they help reduce blood cholesterol and sugar. These fibers help reduce the risk of getting diabetics.
Examples of plants with soluble fibers are oat bran, barley, nuts, seeds, beans, peas, lentils, and fruits as well as vegetables.
What Are Insoluble Fibers?
Soluble fibers play a vital role when it comes to bowel movement. It absorbs water into the stool to make it soft for easy passage.
The key role of insoluble fiber is to prevent constipation and reducing the risk of diverticular disease. It is the reason behind their popularity in the diet requirements.
Examples of plants with insoluble fibers are whole wheat flour, wheat barn, nuts, beans, green beans, cauliflower, and potatoes.
Comparison Chart: Soluble Vs Insoluble Fibers
|Basic Terms||Soluble Fibers||Insoluble Fibers|
|Solubility in Water||Soluble||Insoluble|
|Health Benefits||Reduce blood cholesterol and sugars||Prevent constipation and reduce the risk of diverticular disease|
|Chewing Properties||Soft and easy to chew||Quite tough and difficult to chew|
|Common Plant Sources||Barley, oatmeal, broccoli, legumes||Legumes, whole grains, cereal grains, celery|
|Recommended Intake||Diet with less amount||Diet with more amounts|
|Examples||Xylose, pectin, fructans, and raffinose||Lignin, cellulose, chitin|
Core Difference Between Soluble and Insoluble Fiber In Point Form
- Soluble fibers are soluble in water while insoluble fibers are insoluble in water
- Soluble fibers are soft and easy to chew while insoluble fibers are very tough and difficult to chew
- Soluble fibers help to reduce blood cholesterol and sugars while insoluble fibers help to prevent constipation and reduce the risk of diverticular disease
- It is recommended to take more of insoluble fibers in the diet and less soluble fibers in the diet
- The main sources of soluble fibers are legumes, oatmeal, barley, and broccoli while insoluble fibers are cereal grains, whole grains, celery, and legumes.
- Examples of content of soluble fibers are xylose, pectin, and raffinose while insoluble fibers are lignin, cellulose, and chitin
The main difference between soluble and insoluble fiber is that soluble fibers are soluble in water and easy to chew while insoluble fibers are insoluble in water and difficult to chew.