According to Italian researchers, people who consume plenty of fibre-rich foods may have a lower risk of cancers of the mouth and throat.
The investigators found that people who consumed the most fruit, vegetables and whole grain cereals had about half the risk of these cancers compared with people who consumed the least amount.
Soluble fibre found in foods such as oatmeal and fruit, and insoluble fibre found in seeds and the skin of fruit, were both protective, according to a study published in the February issue of the International Journal of Cancer.
Exactly how fibre lowers these cancer risks is not clear. Fibre may slow the digestion and absorption of carbohydrates and therefore limit the amount of insulin that is released into the bloodstream. Too much insulin, the hormone that regulates blood sugar, may result in proteins in the blood known as insulin growth factors (IGF), which may increase the risk of some types of cancer.
Or, fibre may adhere to cancer-causing particles in the bloodstream and help remove them from the body. Fibre also contains antioxidants, compounds that mop-up free radicals which, if left unchecked, can destroy the DNA of cells.
All research on this web site is the property of Leslie Beck Nutrition Consulting Inc. and is protected by copyright. Keep in mind that research on these matters continues daily and is subject to change. The information presented is not intended as a substitute for medical treatment. It is intended to provide ongoing support of your healthy lifestyle practices.