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So Much Fiber Should We Eat To Prevent Diseases

So Much Fiber Should We Eat To Prevent Diseases

Table of Contents:
1) A New Meta-Analysis
2) The Daily Intake Of 25-29 Grams Of Fiber Is Ideal.
3) Why Fiber Is So Good For Us?

1) A new Meta-Analysis:
Researchers and health organizations have long welcomed the benefits of fibre, but how much fibre should we consume?

This question has led the World Health Organization (WHO) to commission a new study.

The new research aimed to develop new guidelines for the consumption of fibre and to show which carbohydrates best protect against non-communicable diseases and prevent weight gain.



Noncommunicable diseases are also referred to as chronic diseases. According to WHO, there are "four major types of non-communicable diseases": cardiovascular disease, cancer, chronic respiratory disease and diabetes.

Professor Jim Mann of the University of Otago in New Zealand is the corresponding author of the study, and Andrew Reynolds, a research associate at the Dunedin School of Medicine of Otago, is the lead author of the study.

So it was not possible to determine which foods to protect against Range of diseases are recommended ".

To find out, the researchers performed a meta-analysis of observational studies and clinical trials.

2) The Daily Intake Of 25-29 Grams Of Fibre Is Ideal:

Reynolds and colleagues studied data from 185 observational studies - equivalent to 135 million person-years - and 58 clinical trials, which recruited a total of over 4,600 people. The analyzed studies spanned for almost 40 years.

The scientists examined the frequency of certain chronic diseases and the rate of premature deaths that resulted.

These conditions included: coronary heart disease, cardiovascular disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, colon cancer and a number of cancers related to obesity, such as breast cancer, cervical cancer, esophageal cancer and prostate cancer.

Consumption of high fibre foods correlated with a 16-24% lower incidence of coronary heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and colorectal cancer.

High fibre foods include whole grains, vegetables, fruits and legumes such as peas, beans, lentils and chickpeas.

The analysis also showed that the number of fibre people should consume daily to gain these health benefits is 25-29 grams (g). In comparison, adults in Western countries consume an average of 15 g of fibre per day.

The authors also suggest that consuming more than 29g of fibre per day can bring even more health benefits.

However, they warn that although the study itself has not identified any harmful effects of fibre consumption, excessive consumption of fibre may be detrimental to people with inadequate iron or minerals.

Consuming large amounts of whole grains can further reduce iron levels, the researchers explain.

Finally, the clinical trials included in the study also showed that consuming more fibre correlates strongly with lower weight and lower cholesterol levels.

3) Why fibre is so good for us?

Prof. Mann comments on the significance of the results by saying, "The health benefits of fibre are backed up by over 100 years of research in chemistry, physical properties, physiology, and metabolic effects."

"Fiber-rich whole foods, which have to be chewed and retain much of their structure in the gut, increase satiety and help with weight control and can positively affect fat and glucose levels," he adds.

"The dietary fibre breakdown in the colon by the resident bacteria has additional far-reaching effects, including the protection against colon cancer."

"Our results provide convincing evidence that dietary guidelines focus on increasing fibre intake and exchanging refined grains with whole grains. This reduces the risk of disease and mortality in a variety of important diseases."

The fibres in fruits, vegetables and cereals facilitate intestinal transit and help control blood sugar and cholesterol levels.

If it is advisable to eat five fruits and vegetables a day, it is for their vitamins, their minerals, but also for their fibres. The benefits of the latter are attested in the prevention of obesity, diabetes, cholesterol and induced diseases, but also in the prevention of colon cancer. And yet, we are content with 15 to 20 grams of fibre per day, almost half as much as at the beginning of the century, bread and vegetables have declined in favour of meats, fats and sugars ... Plants fibre suppliers are missing yet not: raw vegetables, cereals, rice, fruits and vegetables. They offer us two types of fibres.

Soluble or insoluble fibre
First, the soluble fibres (pectin, gum and mucilage), the degradation of which produces a kind of gel absorbing water. They facilitate the slippage of waste in the gut and also participate in the control of blood sugar and cholesterol by trapping sugars and fats. They are found in apples, pears, peaches and berries ... but also in fleshy vegetables and, for cereals, in oats or barley.
The insoluble fibres (cellulose, lignin ...), meanwhile, are destined to be eliminated by the body. They give volume to the stool and stimulate the contractions of the intestine. Also beneficial for transit, they can be irritating when consumed in excess. They are found in cereal peel or skins of fruits and vegetables.

Ideally, both soluble and insoluble fibre should be consumed as they all contribute to the microbiota's health. However, all may be distinctly beneficial.

Soluble fibre, a solution for irritable bowel syndrome?
In the case of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), formerly known as functional colopathy, it is better to be selective. This chronic disorder affects about 5% of the population and is associated with abdominal pain, bloating, and transit disorders, with diarrhoea or constipation, or alternating between the two. It is characterized when the pains occur at least one day a week for more than six months. "The precise cause of this disease is still partly mysterious," notes Professor Jean-Marc Sabaté, a gastroenterologist at Avicenne Hospital in Bobigny. "But even in patients who have IBS with constipation, it is better to avoid insoluble maize-based fibre, cereal mixtures or mueslis to favour soluble fibre, which also facilitates transit but promote less fermentation of bacteria and painful bloating. "

Among the soluble fibres, some patients are improved with ispaghul (or psyllium) and others feel as well with prunes.  "For the moment, despite the abundance of sometimes conflicting work, we lack studies on the mechanisms of action of fibres during IBS, according to the microbiota of patients and their dietary fibre sources. In these conditions, nobody can still designate the ideal fibre.

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