Eating plenty of fiber lowers the risk of dying from many diseases, according to a new report in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. The European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition study looked at the diets of more than 450,000 European men and women. Those who ate the most high-fiber foods—vegetables, fruits, beans, and whole grains—were most likely to stay alive and well over the next 13 years. Here’s the math: Every 10 grams of fiber per day cut the risk of dying by 10 percent. For digestive diseases, every 10 grams of fiber per day cut mortality risk by nearly 40 percent. Fiber was also helpful for diseases that affect blood circulation and respiration, and even some cancers.
- Chuang SC, Norat T, Murphy N, et al. Fiber intake and total and cause-specific mortality in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition cohort. Am J Clin Nutr. 2012;96:164-174.