Roughage is another name for dietary fibre, which occurs naturally in fruits, vegetables and grains. A diet high in dietary fibre can have many health benefits, including aiding digestion, reducing constipation and controlling weight. Dietary fibre is also used to treat a variety of conditions, such as heart disease, diverticulosis and diabetes. According to the 2005 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, you should consume 14 grams of fibre for every 1,000 calories in your diet. If you eat 2,000 calories a day, you should aim for 28 grams of fibre.
Fruit boasts a high content of dietary fibre. Since fibre is often concentrated in the peel, not eating them will reduce fibre content. A large apple provides about 3.3 grams of fibre; a banana, approximately 3.1 grams; a cup of blackberries, 7.6 grams; a small orange, 3.1 grams; and a cup of raisins, 5.4 grams.
Vegetables also have a high dietary fibre content. A cup of baked beans has 10.4 grams; a cup of lentils, 15.6 grams; and a cup of winter squash, 5.7 grams. A half of a sweet potato provides 3.9 grams; a cup of split peas, 16.3 grams; and a cup of carrots, 3.1 grams.
Grains, including bread and cereal, also are good sources of dietary fibre. A slice of whole grain bread provides 1.7 grams; a cup of oatmeal, 4 grams; and a cup of brown rice, 3.5 grams. Brown rice has more fibre than white rice, and wheat bread has more fibre than white bread.
Nuts also provide dietary fibre. A serving of 24 almonds provides approximately 3.3 grams; 28 peanuts, about 2.3 grams; and 14 English walnut halves, about 1.9 grams.