High fibre foods 'cut bowel cancer risk'

 

A diet high in fibre-rich foods such as porridge, brown rice and cereal cuts the risk of bowel cancer, according to an analysis of 25 studies.

Experts said cereal fibre and whole grains in particular cut the risk but found "no significant evidence" of a reduction for fibre in fruit, vegetables and legumes such as lentils and beans.

The study, published online in the British Medical Journal (BMJ), found that for every 10g a day increase in fibre intake, there was a 10% drop in risk of bowel cancer.

So people who already had a diet containing 5g of fibre a day had a 10% reduction in risk if they ate 15g a day.

There was also a 20% reduction in risk for every three servings a day (90g a day) of whole grains.

Whole grain foods include whole grain breads and cereals, brown rice and porridge.

The researchers, including experts from Imperial College London and the University of Leeds, said: "Our results indicate a 10% reduction in risk of colorectal cancer for each 10 g/day intake of total dietary fibre and cereal fibre and about a 20% reduction for each three servings (90 g/day) of whole grain daily, and further reductions with higher intake."

The lifetime risk of developing bowel cancer for men is around one in 18. For women, it is around one in 20.

Previous studies have produced mixed results on whether fibre reduces the risk of bowel cancer.

The researchers said more studies were needed on different types of fibre and on people with different lifestyles and diets.

The latest combined research involved almost two million participants.

Around 38,500 cases of bowel cancer are diagnosed every year in the UK and the disease kills more than 16,000 people.

Dr Rachel Thompson, deputy head of science for the World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF), said: "Taken together with other evidence, the findings of this study provides strong evidence that foods containing fibre reduce risk of bowel cancer.

"This new study, which is part of our Continuous Update Project, is one of the main reasons that our expert panel now judges the evidence on the link stronger than before.

"This adds further weight to our recommendation that people who want to reduce their risk of cancer should eat more of a variety of vegetables, fruits, whole grains and pulses."

Deborah Alsina, chief executive of Bowel Cancer UK, said: "This valuable study provides further evidence that it is possible to stack the odds against bowel cancer.

"Simple changes to your diet and lifestyle can make a huge difference. Changes such as increasing your intake of fibre can genuinely help you feel healthier and reduce your risk of the disease.

"This is great news because it's achievable by most people and could have a big impact on the nation's health."

PA

Suggested Topics
Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookA delicious collection of 50 meaty main courses
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    Recruitment Genius: Call Centre Manager - OTE £50,000

    £25000 - £50000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This innovative online car purc...

    Recruitment Genius: Subscriptions and Marketing Assistant

    £12500 - £15000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A subscriptions and marketing a...

    Metail Ltd: Business Development Manager for Asia Pacific

    £35,000 - £40,000 based on experience : Metail Ltd: As a Business Development ...

    Recruitment Genius: Customer Service Supervisor

    £15000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company is a well establis...

    Day In a Page

    Greece says 'No': A night of huge celebrations in Athens as voters decisively back Tsipras and his anti-austerity stance in historic referendum

    Greece referendum

    Greeks say 'No' to austerity and plunge Europe into crisis
    Ten years after the 7/7 terror attacks, is Britain an altered state?

    7/7 bombings anniversary

    Ten years after the terror attacks, is Britain an altered state?
    Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has created

    Versace haute couture review

    Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has ever created
    No hope and no jobs, so Gaza's young risk their lives, climb the fence and run for it

    No hope and no jobs in Gaza

    So the young risk their lives and run for it
    Fashion apps: Retailers roll together shopping and social networking for mobile customers

    Fashion apps

    Retailers roll together shopping and social networking for mobile customers
    The Greek referendum exposes a gaping hole at the heart of the European Union – its distinct lack of any genuine popular legitimacy

    Gaping hole at the heart of the European Union

    Treatment of Greece has shown up a lack of genuine legitimacy
    Number of young homeless in Britain 'more than three times the official figures'

    'Everything changed when I went to the hostel'

    Number of young homeless people in Britain is 'more than three times the official figures'
    Compton Cricket Club

    Compton Cricket Club

    Portraits of LA cricketers from notorious suburb to be displayed in London
    London now the global money-laundering centre for the drug trade, says crime expert

    Wlecome to London, drug money-laundering centre for the world

    'Mexico is its heart and London is its head'
    The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court that helps a winner keep on winning

    The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court

    It helps a winner keep on winning
    Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

    Is this the future of flying?

    Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
    Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

    Isis are barbarians

    but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
    The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

    Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

    Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
    Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

    'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

    Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
    Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

    Call of the wild

    How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate