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[3 min read] Dietary fibre lowers patients’ risk of diet-related diseases

Observational studies and clinical trials conducted over nearly 40 years have revealed the health benefits of eating at least 25-29 grams of dietary fibre a day.

The results of a series of systematic reviews and meta-analyses published in The Lancet suggest a 15–30% decrease in all-cause and cardiovascular-related mortality in people who eat the highest amount of fibre compared to those who eat the least.

It was found that eating fibre-rich foods also reduced incidence of coronary heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and colorectal cancer by 16–24%. Per 1,000 participants, the impact translates into 13 fewer deaths and six fewer cases of coronary heart disease.

In addition, a meta-analysis of clinical trials suggested that increasing fibre intakes was associated with lower body weight and cholesterol, compared with lower intakes.

For every 8-gram increase of dietary fibre eaten per day, total deaths and incidences of coronary heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and colorectal cancer decreased by 5–27%. Protection against stroke and breast cancer also increased. Consuming 25-29 grams each day was adequate, but the data suggest that higher intakes of dietary fibre could provide even greater protection.

Read more recent research.

Source: Reynolds, A., Mann, J., Cummings, J., Winter, N., Mete, E., Te Morenga, L. (10 January 2019.) “Carbohydrate quality and human health: a series of systematic reviews and meta-analyses.” The Lancet. Volume 393. Issue 10,170. Pages 434-445. Published 2 February 2019 DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(18)31809-9

Want to learn more about managing your patients’ nutrition concerns in general practice? Upskill in Medical Nutrition Management.

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