When it comes to cereal-based products like breakfast cereals, rice, pasta, bread, and the like – the amount of fibre that can be deduced from them depends on how the grain has been processed. It was found that fibre is mostly found on the outer layer of the grain. Thorough processing of cereal therefore affects the fibre content of the food. But aside from the fibre, most of the vitamins and minerals are also lost during the processing. This is why many people may have not had enough fibre.
Understanding the importance of fibre intake is necessary to live a healthier life. Lack of fibre may cause many problems like heart diseases, indigestion, cancer, haemorrhoids, and many more.
How much high fiber do we need to lower risk of disease?
Based on the Dietary Reference Intakes for Energy, children over 4 years should consume at least 25 grams of fibre while adults should consume at least 38 grams. But aside from reducing the risk of bowel cancer, eating foods that are rich in fibre can bring many other health benefits. Fibre aids in digestion, helps a person lose weight, and since it’s very low in fat, fibre prevents the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
High fiber diet and bowel cancer: the latest study
Every year, there are about 38,500 people being diagnosed with bowel cancer and out of this figure, 16,000 die. This is according to the latest health news published in the Daily Mail. There are many sources of fibre – vegetables, fruits, seeds, lentils, nuts, etc. But on the latest study recently published on the British Journal, consuming a lot of these foods does no effect to reduce the risk of bowel cancer. According to the findings of the researchers, adding three servings or a total of 90 grams of wholegrain food to the daily diet can reduce the risk of bowel cancer by 20%. According to Dr Dagfinn Aune, Epidemiologist of Imperial College London, there was a ‘clear gradient in risk reduction associated with increasing amounts of dietary fibre’.
Shopping Tips for High Fibre Diet
Reading the label is one good way to determine whether what you’re buying contains high amount of fibre or not. The UK Food Standards Agency recommends that when buying packaged cereals, consumers should read the ingredients list carefully. Aside from the wholegrain cereals, some foods that are very rich in fibre are oatmeal, barley cereal, brown rice cereal, rolled wheat flakes, as well as puffed or shredded wheat.
Sudden shift to a high fibre diet may result to bloating, excessive wind, and constipation. Health experts recommend consumers to divert in high fibre diet gradually. You also need to increase your fluid intake. Fibre acts like a sponge that absorbs lots of fluid to soften the stool so it is easily flushed out of the body.
And lastly, always consult your doctor before trying out the high fibre diet if you’re suffering from any health problems for proper guidance.
More information about Fibre and whole grains reduce bowel cancer risk can be found in the BBC iPlayer.