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Aug 13, 2011

Breast Cancer Risk Declines with Fiber Intake

Overall health and prevention of chronic disease has a whole lot to do with functioning of the digestive system.  A new study has shed more light on the importance of dietary fiber in breast cancer prevention.  Researchers performed a meta-analysis, which is basically a review of previous studies on the same subject.  Ten studies looking at the association between intake of dietary fiber and breast cancer were analyzed.  The assessment included a total of 712,195 participants and 16,848 breast cancer cases.    

Results of the meta-analysis indicated that people with the greatest consumption of fiber had an 11% lowered risk for breast cancer in comparison with those who consumed the least amount of fiber.  Even more eye-opening was the researchers’ discovery that with every 10 grams of fiber consumed daily, there was a drop in breast cancer risk by 7%.        

Fiber has multiple ways in which it acts to optimize overall health.  High fiber foods include vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes, nuts, and seeds.  Fiber helps foods move more quickly through the digestive tract, thus preventing any toxic by-products from lingering too long.  The liver and colon are able to excrete toxic waste products from the body through regular bowel movements.  Fiber is a vital factor in keeping people “regular,” meaning that bowel movements occur 1-2 times per day, are well-formed, and easily passed.  Fiber also plays an important role in maintaining healthy cholesterol levels as well as keeping blood sugar stabilized.  

Dr. Shana McQueen