Eating a diet rich in fibre could help to reduce the risk of lung conditions
Researchers have found that eating a fibre-rich diet could help to reduce a person’s chance of developing lung conditions.
The study, published in the journal, Annals of the American Thoracic Society, used data from a national survey combining physical tests and interviews carried out to assess the health and nutrition of people living in the USA.
Scientists analysed data from 1,971 adults aged between 40 and 79 who took part in the survey in 2009–2010. As part of the survey, each participant had given information on their diet and taken two lung function tests.
The researchers looked at each person’s diet alongside their lung function test results to see if there was a potential relationship.
They found that those eating the most fibre (over 17.5 g per day) were more likely to have normal lung function than those eating the least fibre (under 10.75 g per day). People with more fibre in their diets were also less prone to airway restriction, which means having problems fully filling the lungs with air and emptying them.
Fibre is found in foods including vegetables, fruits and grains, and has been shown to help lower cholesterol, as well as reduce the risk of heart disease and diabetes. However, further research is needed to support its potential benefits for lung health.