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Research

How dietary fiber helps in disease prevention

Researchers say foods rich in fiber can help you live longer. There are plenty of high fiber foods which you can incorporate into various parts of your diet. Fruits and vegetables contain fiber. Therefore, they are a central part of a healthy diet, and variety is as important as quantity.

New research proposes that those who ingest more fiber are more probable to ward off diseases. It makes your daily digestive habits more regular. But now, it’s not just a study telling you to do one thing this week and the opposite the next.

This study involved 40 years’ of information and the World Health Organization, the collective worldwide unit devoted to making sure that we don’t suffer or die prematurely from preventable disorders.

The study looked at the past investigation. It found that there’s at least one common line among those who have diets which include more fiber: They avoid common diseases and are more likely to live longer.

The scholars observed what’s been studied, and found, about health consequences in populations with low to higher than average fiber intake.

The research, published in The Lancet, was a meta-analysis of almost all studies presented in major research databases, and some searched by hand. It included approximately more than 135 million person-years of data. It came from 185 prospective types of research and 58 clinical trials with 4,635 participants.

Largely, the study over the years highlighted one thing: The population would be at an advantage if they consume more fiber. Because it reduces the risk of long-lasting diseases which are affecting humans.

Those comprise deaths from any cause and incidences of preventable diseases, like stroke, coronary heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and colorectal cancer. Dietary fiber may also help to modulate the immune system. And therefore produce a reduced risk of diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer, and obesity.

What you should eat

Mainly, investigators found that consumption of 25 to 29 grams of fiber is ideal for a day. Whole grains are a particularly good source of fiber.

As there are around 5.5 grams of fiber in average-sized pear and 10 grams in an avocado cup, which might not appear like a lot. Or a lot if you don’t like those foodstuffs.

But there are many different high-fiber foods you can include in several parts of your food. They comprise vegetables like carrots, beets, and artichokes as well as fruits like apples, bananas, and strawberries. There’s also oats, kidney beans, and sweet potatoes.

According to the researchers of the study, people should try to increase dietary fiber intake and replace refined grains with whole grains to get good health. Even some popcorns and a small number of almonds can help you fiber-load. It’s these little changes which make a large difference.

The study was funded by the World Health Organization and many other research institutes. On average, New Zealanders live two years longer than people in the United States. For adult obesity, they rank third in the world. The United States is number one.

Optimizing your gut environment

Mindy Haar, Ph.D. agrees with the findings of the study. She is an assistant dean of undergraduate affairs at the New York Institute of Technology School of Health Professions.

Researchers found that fiber acts as a prebiotic. It boosts the proliferation of probiotics in the intestine. There are many kinds of probiotics that promote good health, so consumption of high-fiber foods improves the gut environment.

Those foods comprise fresh vegetables and fruits, cereals, beans, whole-grain bread, pasta, brown rice, and chickpeas. Naturally, fiber is abundant in nutritive foods, and they exceed supplements every time.

If you are going to add fiber to your diet, do it steadily and with plenty of water. Fiber works like a sponge as it digests, so it requires more water to pass through easily.

Sophie Abram

Sophie Abram is an author at Top Health Journal. She has a master’s degree in Biochemistry. Evidence-based nutrition is her passion and she loves to devote her career to informing the general public about it. She has extensive experience as a researcher and her research focus is within food reformulation, improving food supply and food environments. Her research examines how nutrition, dietary supplements, and exercise affects human body composition. Twitter- @abram_sophie

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