WHY WE SHOULD ALL EAT MORE FIBRE 

fibre headlines

Eating more fibre cuts the risk of killer diseases by a third.


Researchers commissioned by the World Health Organisation reviewed 50 years of evidence, looking at  230 previous studies involving 215,000 people.

Researcher Professor John Cummings, of the University of Dundee, said "The work that we have done means we have enough evidence from population studies, human experimental work and the biochemistry and physiological of fibre to be confident of the clear benefits to health. Fibre has come of age as a unique and essential nutrient."

The findings:

  • Overall death rates were 15% lower in those eating the highest amount of fibre.

  • These people were 31% less likely to die of heart disease, 22% less likely to have a stroke and 16% less likely to get bowel cancer.

  • For every 8g increase of fibre eaten per day total deaths and incidences of heart disease, type 2 diabetes and colorectal cancer decrease by up to 27%. Protection against stroke and breast cancer also increased.

  • Those eating wholegrains the most are 34% less likely to die of heart disease - the biggest benefits occur above 25g fibre per day.

  • Increasing intake of wholegrains also reduces body weight and cholesterol.

This is pretty compelling stuff - we're so delighted it has hit the headlines as hopefully people will start to take action. People consume only 19g of fibre a day on average - just over half the recommended intake of 30g and massively less than the 100g we consumed as cave men. Women are worst then men, on average consuming about 17g, and men 21g, a day.

The latest UK National Diet and Nutrition Survey shows that only 13% of men and only 4% of women aged 19-64 years are consuming the daily recommended 30g; this pattern is mirrored across the developed world. Hopefully this news will make people see the need to change.

Interestingly natural ingredients were found to be a better marker of health than the “glycaemic index”, a measure of how quickly foods affect blood sugar, researchers concluded.

How to fill your fibre gap


It's easy to think that incorporating more fibre into your diet will be really hard - but it needn't be. A bowl of delicious Troo Granola provides over 9g of Fibre - almost one third of your daily fibre requirements, perfect to kick the day off with a fibre-filled breakfast that will keep you going until lunch. Yummy Troo Spoonful of Fibre, pure inulin syrup, is a fantastic honey alternative and is 65% fibre, 7g per tablespoon. This is the easiest way to add fibre to your diet; add it to hot or cold drinks, drizzle it over porridge or yoghurt, spread it on a crumpet or add it to soups, stews or smoothies.

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Fibre food

What food is high in fibre?


The recommendation is to get a wide variety of fibre from different sources.  Fibre is found in wholegrains, including wheat, oats, barley and quinoa, as well as fruit and vegetables, particularly legumes such as lentils, beans and chickpeas.

Professor Kevin Whelan of King's College London, said: 'People should consider ways of increasing fibre intake through changing food preparation methods - eg. not peeling potatoes, switching to wholegrain cereals and replacing sugary snacks with fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds'.

Hints and tips for increasing your fibre consumption

  • Choosing a higher-fibre breakfast cereal such as Troo Granola or plain wholewheat biscuits (like Weetabix) or plain shredded whole grain (like Shredded wheat), or Troo Porridge as oats are also a good source of fibre.

  • Go for wholemeal or granary breads, or higher fibre white bread, and choose wholegrains like wholewheat pasta, bulgur wheat or brown rice.

  • Go for potatoes with their skins on, such as a baked potato or boiled new potatoes.

  • Add pulses like beans, lentils or chickpeas to stews, curries and salads.

  • Include plenty of vegetables with meals, either as a side dish or added to sauces, stews or curries.

  • Have some fresh or dried fruit, or fruit canned in natural juice for dessert. Because dried fruit is sticky, it can increase the risk of tooth decay, so it's better if it is only eaten as part of a meal, rather than as a between-meal snack.

  • For snacks, try fresh fruit, vegetable sticks, rye crackers, oatcakes and unsalted nuts or seeds.

Source: Hints and tips for increasing your fibre consumption from the NHS

When you are increasing the fibre in your diet there are 2 key things to remember; do it gradually and increase your water consumption at the same time.

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