High-fiber diet linked to lower risk of death and chronic diseases

Fresh berries are an especially easy way to punch up your fiber intake. These bite-size beauties are chock full of fiber a cup of most berries adds 3 to 4 grams and satisfies your sweet tooth to boot

People who consume plenty of fibre and whole grains have a reduced risk of developing chronic diseases, such as cardiovascular disease and cancer, a new study has found.

The research shows that higher intakes of fiber "led to a reduced incidence of a surprisingly broad range of relevant diseases (heart disease, type 2 diabetes and colorectal cancer)", reduced body weight and total cholesterol, and reduced mortality, Reynolds wrote.

The only risk researchers uncovered from eating a large amount of whole grain, high-fibre foods was a chance of ill effects to consumers with low mineral or iron levels.

The study was commissioned by the World Health Organization (WHO) in order to help inform the development of new recommendations for optimal daily fibre intake when it comes to providing protection against non-communicable diseases.

"Our research indicates we should have at least 25g to 29g of fibre from foods daily, although most of us now consume less than 20g of fibre daily", said Dr Andrew Reynolds, lead author of the study.

When your mother told you to eat your porridge she knew what she was talking about, with a global study confirming a high-fibre diet protects against heart disease.

The study also found that diets with a low glycaemic index and low glycaemic load provided limited support for protection against Type 2 diabetes and stroke only.

Consumption of 25 to 29 grams of fiber per day was sufficient, but the data suggests that an even higher intake could provide greater protection.

The health benefits are best if we eat at least 25g of dietary fibre a day, according to analysis of observational studies and clinical trials conducted over almost 40 years. Benefits Of High-Fiber Diet A new paper reviewed previously published observational studies and clinical trials to see the relationship between different types of carbohydrates - sugar and fibers from fruits, vegetables, and whole grains - to the health.

Protection against stroke and breast cancer also increased. Rich sources of dietary fibre include whole grains, pulses, vegetables and fruit.

Generally, on average, most people get only about 20 grams of fiber a day.

In Australia women are advised to have 25g of dietary fibre a day and men 30g.

The authors only included studies with healthy participants, so the findings can not be applied to people with existing chronic diseases.

Fiber content was shown to be a better indicator of a carbohydrate food's ability to prevent disease than glycemic index, the measure of the degree to which blood glucose goes up after a particular food is eaten.