Fiber may reduce risk of death from diseases

by Jeff Gelski
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ROCKVILLE, MD. — Dietary fiber may reduce the risk of death from cardiovascular, infectious and respiratory diseases, according to a study involving researchers from the National Cancer Institute in Rockville and appearing on-line Feb. 14 in Archives of Internal Medicine.

Researchers examined dietary fiber intake in relation to total mortality and death from specific causes in the National Institutes of Health-AARP Diet and Health Study, a prospective cohort study. During an average of nine years of follow-up, they identified 20,126 deaths in men and 11,330 deaths in women.

Dietary fiber intake was associated with a significantly lowered risk of total death in men and women. It also lowered the risk of death from cardiovascular, infectious and respiratory diseases by 24% to 56% in men and by 34% to 59% in women. The researchers observed an inverse association between dietary fiber intake and cancer death in men but not in women. Dietary fiber from grains, but not from other sources, significantly was inversely related to total and causes-specific death in both men and women.

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