Role of Fibre in Diseases [Part 2]
Fibre is beneficial for diabetics because
a) Fibre can reduce the insulin or oral drug requirements.
b) Fibre can delay carbohydrates absorbtion and slow down the rise of blood sugar after meal.
Also, fibre can lower the level of cholesterol and other fats in the blood. Fibre is helpful for over weight diabetics, because it replaces the high caloric foods in the diet and thus helps in weight reduction.
4.Coronary Heart Disease
A high fibre diet is said to reduce the risk of ‘ Atheroscelerosis’ which is described as ‘hardening of the arteries’ characterized by degenerative changes in the arteries cause by deposition of lipids, carbohydrates , fibrous tissue, blood and blood products leading to narrowing of the blood vessels and difficulty in the supply of blood to organs. Pectins, mucilages and gums bind with bile acids and steroid materials. The chelating effect brings about reduction in blood cholesterol levels. Lipid lowering effect could also be associated with the reduced levels of fat intake that is characteristic of many high fibre diets.
Thus the use of fibre may prove to be palatable and inexpensive method in the diet therapy of the hyperlipoproteinemias. (high lipid levels in blood)
5. Colon Cancer
Fibre protects or lowers the risk of colonic cancer by decreasing the transit time, and so allowing less time for the colonic bacteria to produce carcinogens (substances causing cancer) and consequently less time for the carcinogens to remain in the bowl, thereby, playing a protective role against colonic cancer.
To conclude it can be said that whilst most dietary modification are restrictions of some kind or other, everyone agrees that for a variety of reasons, we should be eating more fibre. Also high fibre foods are nutritious without containing concentrated calories, fat, sugar or salt. They tend to be filling without being fattening.
Caution: Any increase in fibre intake should be introduced gradually. Too much fibre, too quickly can result in abdominal discomfort, flatulence and even diarrohoea, especially if the previous diet has been low in fibre.