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Low Carb/High Fibre & Hunger

Updated: Aug 9, 2021

Appetite control is the key to ideal weight, metabolic health and physique.

It's easy to stick to any diet or fasting regime if you're not hungry.

High glycemic carbs that result in an insulin spike after meals often induces hunger after 2 hours and beyond. This is because the effect of insulin, while returning glucose to near normal levels within 2 hours, also suppresses blood free fatty acid levels for many more hours. The brain hunger centers have specialized mechanisms to sense energy levels in the blood stream from glucose and free fatty acids. The graph below shows how a high carb mixed meal suppressed energy availability from 4 to 5 hours after a mixed meal.

Carbohydrate restriction resulting in reduced glucose and insulin after meals is an effective weight loss strategy. However, increased fibre even in a high carb diet has also been associated with weight loss and improvement of T2 diabetes. Therefore, the combination of low carb and high prebiotic fibre is expected to be even more effective due to several additional mechanisms involved in appetite regulation:

Calorie restriction is an effective way to lose weight, decrease age related diseases and even extend life expectancy but is unlikely to be sustainable if it is associated with intolerable hunger. High glycemic, rapidly digested carbohydrates, such as sugar, corn syrup, flour, potatoes, rice, corn flour, form over 50% of most people’s diets and attempts at calorie restriction while still consuming these types of addictive foods is associated with agonizing hunger so much so that these foods make it almost impossible to maintain a normal weight over the long term.

Optimal Fiber Intake?

It is difficult to achieve recommended fibre intake with prevailing food choices. Even observational studies that show health benefits of fibre, those subjects eating the most amount of fibre (around 30g/day) were still consuming less than recommended daily amounts. Production of short chain fatty acids particularly butyrate are dose related to fiber fermentation and new evidence regarding the vital roles of butyrate suggests optimal fiber intake needs re-evaluation. A meta-analysis showed a dose response reduction in cardio-vascular disease risk with up to 70g fibre/day whereas hunter gatherer populations customarily consume in excess of 100g/day and experience far fewer metabolic disorders.

The problem with obtaining 40g a day of fibre from whole-wheat flour is that it comes with 250g (1000 kcals) of additional starch. On the other hand it is impractical to consume large volumes of vegetables, for example one would need to eat 1.7 kg of broccoli to get 40g of fibre. These issues were the impetus for me to develop Fiberflour, where profound macronutrient transformations are achievable substituting FiberFlour for whole-wheat in daily bread, wraps or chapatis for instance.

Suggested Dietary Strategy



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