Fiber Reduces the Risk of Colon Cancer
Monday, November 28, 2011
Board Certified Clinical Nutritionist Byron J. Richards,
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An extensive review of previous fiber studies published in the British Medical Journal demonstrates that for each 10 gram increase of dietary fiber intake there is a 10% risk reduction for colon cancer. Fiber helps reduce the time toxic contents stay in the digestive tract, reducing intestinal inflammation, damage, and potential mutation. Additionally, when friendly bacteria ferment fiber they produce short chain fatty acids such as butyric acid, which is a potent gene regulating and anti-cancer nutrient. The researchers also found that whole grains, which are loaded with anti-cancer isoprenoids and other nutrients, likely provide additional benefits for cancer protection besides the fiber itself.
Once again this study speaks to the importance of fiber and human health. Colon health is not just about cancer reduction. We now know that many metabolic problems, cardiovascular problems, and even brain function is influenced by the health of the digestive tract. While fiber is not the only important nutrient for digestive tract health, it is arguably one of the most basic that should never be overlooked.
For general health, shoot for 30 grams of fiber intake per day, from food and fiber supplements (as needed). If you are overweight that level may need to go to 40 – 50 grams of fiber per day to help get you back on metabolic track, meaning supplemental fiber is likely quite helpful.
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