Fiber is important for heart health: study

Boston – Many Americans do not consume enough fiber, which may have negative consequences for their weight and heart health, concludes a new study from Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard University.

Although the Institute of Medicine recommends 38 grams of fiber a day for men and 25 grams a day for women, researchers found people consume much less – between 15.7 and 17 grams – based on data from 23,168 people in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.

Fiber intake varied by race, with Mexican-Americans eating the most (18.8 grams) and blacks the least (13.1 grams), according to the study abstract. Among all racial groups, more fiber was associated with lower rates of metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular inflammation and obesity.

As a result, researchers called for new strategies to promote fiber consumption.

The study was published in the December issue of the American Journal of Medicine.