Fibre frontiers

By Judy Buttriss

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Nutrition, British nutrition foundation

Judy Buttriss, director general, British Nutrition Foundation
Judy Buttriss, director general, British Nutrition Foundation
Benefits of regular fibre intake were stressed by the Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition’s call to boost intakes to 30g/day from current intakes of 18g/day.

Modelling we have undertaken shows that 30g/day is achievable, but would require a dietary pattern unlike that consumed by the majority of Brits a combination of five-a-day, wholegrain or high-fibre starchy staples at each meal, plus high-fibre snacks. This sounds challenging, but research suggests the gains could be considerable.

The link with gut and cardiovascular health has been known for some time and research discussed at a British Nutrition Foundation (BNF) conference suggested potential benefits perhaps for specific fibre fractions for bone health and even immune function.

There is also growing interest in the role for fibre combinations and fibre/protein mixtures in appetite and energy control.

The most commonly proposed mechanisms concern direct and indirect effects of short chain fatty acids, generated through the fermentation of specific types of fibre by the beneficial bacteria that reside in the large bowel.

More details can be found at the BNF website.

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