It’s good for everyone to consume fiber daily because it helps the body in vital and significant ways, but Australian researchers have discovered an even more important reason for people to do this.
A new paper published in The Journals of Gerontology, Series A: Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences reports that eating the right amount of fiber from breads, cereals, and fruits can help people avoid disease and disability as the aging process unfolds. Older people who consumed high amounts of fiber (also known as roughage) reported lower levels of dementia, diabetes, and problems with their arteries.
The data used in the study was compiled from the Blue Mountains Eye Study, which followed a group of more than 1,600 adults aged 50 years and older. The researchers wanted to explore the relationship between carbohydrate nutrition and healthy aging. Factors examined for each person were:
- Total carbohydrate intake
- Total fiber intake
- Glycemic index
- Glycemic load, and
- Sugar intake
Of these five factors, it was fiber intake that lead to the most successful aging, defined by the study and researchers as having a complete absence of disability, depressive symptoms, cognitive impairment, respiratory symptoms, and chronic diseases (such as cancer, coronary artery disease, and stroke). Individuals who consumed large amounts of fiber had an 80% better chance of living longer and healthier (within a 10-year follow-up period). The lead researcher admits they had almost expected sugar intake to play a large part in healthier ageing, and that the study’s findings aren’t enough at the moment to make nutritional recommendations to the public at large, but that the results do indeed warrant further investigation.
This study is also backed up by other recent findings which show the importance of fiber and healthy aging. The two seem to have a direct correlation, but only time will tell what future studies might confirm or refute.
Sources for Today’s Article:
“Fibre Linked to Healthy Ageing: Older People Who Have a High Intake of Roughage Found to Be Less Likely to Suffer Dementia, Artery Problems and Diabetes,” Mail Online web site; http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3623038/Fibre-linked-healthy-ageing-Older-people-high-intake-roughage-likely-suffer-dementia-artery-problems-diabetes.html, last accessed June 28, 2016.