Bariatrics and Weight Loss

Fiber Focus for Improved Nutrition

Fiber Focus for Improved Nutrition


The pandemic has changed many facets of how we work, live and play – including our eating habits.

In the past year, you may have heard about the “Quarantine 15,” referring to the 15 pounds individuals were estimated to gain during the 2020 pandemic lockdown. A recent American Psychological Association survey on undesired weight gain during the pandemic states:

  • About 42 percent of US adults reported undesired weight gain (with an average gain of 29 pounds).

  • Millennials (age 25 to 42) were the most significantly impacted, with 48 percent reporting undesired weight gain (with an average gain of 41 pounds). 

With many spending extended time at home, some may overindulge in quick-fix processed meals or snacks to curb feelings of boredom. For those managing obesity, diabetes, hypertension and other co-morbidities, making healthy choices under such circumstances can be even more challenging.

At Northern Dutchess Hospital, the collaborative partnership of a dynamic surgical and nurse care team, and a bariatric and nutrition specialist are available to help you find resources and strategies to safely lose weight and form a healthy relationship with food to prevent chronic disease.

Taking control of your habits is a first step to limit new weight gain, but it’s also about how you fuel your body.

If you’re in the mood to snack, our team suggests foods high in fiber. The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine recommends adults consume about 40 grams of fiber daily. By focusing on fiber, you give your immune system a boost to fight infections while maintaining a healthy gut for overall wellness.

Some fiber-focused foods include:

  • Vegetables and fruits
  • Beans and lentils
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Whole grains

Here are a few cost-effective meal/snack ideas rich in fiber and without processed additives:

Roasted chickpeas: Chickpeas are an excellent source of fiber. When roasted, they provide a satisfying crunch with fewer calories and fat than chips or crackers.

Overnight oats (rolled or steel cut): Oats can be soaked in water or a non-dairy milk overnight and heated in the microwave the next morning for a quick yet filling breakfast or lunch. Top with berries and nuts for an added boost of fiber and nutrients. 

Lentils: Add lentils to your tomato sauce in place of ground meat or cook and use as an alternative to rice for added B vitamins, iron and fiber. 

Adrienne Bolten, MS, RD, CDN, is a metabolic and bariatric registered dietitian with Northern Dutchess Hospital’s Office of Bariatric Surgery and Medical Weight Loss. Learn more about weight-loss surgery here.