Active Low-Carber Forums
Atkins diet and low carb discussion provided free for information only, not as medical advice.
Home Plans Tips Recipes Tools Stories Studies Products
Active Low-Carber Forums
A sugar-free zone


Welcome to the Active Low-Carber Forums.
Support for Atkins diet, Protein Power, Neanderthin (Paleo Diet), CAD/CALP, Dr. Bernstein Diabetes Solution and any other healthy low-carb diet or plan, all are welcome in our lowcarb community. Forget starvation and fad diets -- join the healthy eating crowd! You may register by clicking here, it's free!

Go Back   Active Low-Carber Forums > Main Low-Carb Diets Forums & Support > Low-Carb Studies & Research / Media Watch > Low-Carb War Zone
User Name
Password
Register FAQ Members Calendar Mark Forums Read Search Gallery My P.L.A.N. Survey


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1   ^
Old Tue, Sep-04-18, 22:19
Meme#1's Avatar
Meme#1 Meme#1 is online now
Posts: 10,345
 
Plan: Atkins DANDR
Stats: 210/188/160 Female 5'4"
BF:
Progress: 44%
Location: Texas
Default Fiber Menace

Why is fiber such a menace to your health?

Fiber Menace: The Truth About the Leading Role of Fiber in Diet Failure, Constipation, Hemorrhoids, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Ulcerative Colitis, Crohn's Disease, and Colon Cancer.

You might be surprised to find out that the original intent behind fiber consumption wasn‘t the betterment of your health, but the suppression of sexuality! As this book explains, fiber has indeed succeeded at rendering a great many men and women sexually dysfunctional.

That's why just a generation ago, avoiding fiber was the quintessence of prudent nutrition. Caring parents everywhere, American and European alike, were earnestly peeling fruits (apples, peaches, pears, prunes) and skinning vegetables (tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, potatoes) before giving them to children or eating them themselves.

The French and Italians still do it. And the Japanese diet is practically fiber-free. Americans, on the other hand, are urged to consume 30 to 40 grams of dietary fiber daily, regardless of their age and health.

Many heed this advice (some with a vengeance), assuming there can‘t be too much of a good thing. The outcome is predictable: a pandemic of digestive disorders, diabetes, heart disease, cancers, and obesity. These problems are worse in the United States than in any other Western country.

All this seems hard to believe until you actually begin examining the role of fiber in human nutrition, Thus, the point of Fiber Menace isn't telling you what to eat, but what not to eat and why. Here is a chapter-by-chapter summary of what's under the cover along with a sprinkle of readers' reviews (
https://www.gutsense.org/fiber-mena...enace-book.html



Back in the 1830‘s, a Presbyterian minister named Sylvester Graham (1794—1851) crusaded against anything and everything that he considered the “playboy philosophy.” According to Graham, men should abstain from sex until the age of 30 and have sex just once a month thereafter. To control lust, Graham prescribed a high-fiber vegetarian diet.

Sylveste GrahamBesides sex, Graham campaigned against soft mattresses, hot baths, and other “sensual” things not worthy of “real men,” because, according to Graham, they led to “venereal excess.” That‘s how hard beds and cold showers entered into the American pantheon of manhood, and turned countless boys into rebellious neurotics, drug users, and alcoholics. Alas, substance abuse and mental disorders often follow even a mildly abusive childhood.

Graham preached equally hard against white bread because it lacked fiber and, presumably, caused constipation. In time, this rhetoric gave birth to Graham flour—a coarsely ground wheat made into Graham bread, Graham muffins, and Graham crackers, which eventually degenerated into the ubiquitous sugar-laden children‘s cookies made from refined white flour practically devoid of fiber.[2]

Ironically, Sylvester Graham was the seventeenth child of the Reverend John Graham, who was 72 years old at the time of his son‘s birth. Graham himself lasted for just 57 years and died alone and in obscurity, in large part because of his abrasive, irritable personality—a typical manifestation of acute protein deficiency and unstable blood sugar. Apparently, in Graham‘s own case, a strict vegetarian diet, harsh fiber, and prudish abstinence brought neither health nor happiness. Nonetheless, his message took hold. But it took another century to finally hook Americans on fiber for good.

John KellogJohn Harvey Kellogg (1852–1943) was everything Sylvester Graham was not—a practicing physician, a celebrated surgeon, a successful entrepreneur, a charitable individual, an author of numerous books, articles, and patents, an accomplished lecturer, a man of strong principles, and one of the most prominent and influential health reformers of his time. His impact on American dietary habits was far more profound (and far more damaging) than Graham‘s because he had the resources, the forum, the charisma, the conviction, and the authority to deliver his message over a long, long period of time and to lots and lots of people.

Just like Graham, Kellogg was obsessed with chastity and constipation. True to principle, he never made love to his wife. To “remedy” the sin of masturbation, he advocated circumcision without anesthetic for boys and mutilation of the clitoris with carbolic acid[3] for girls. He blamed constipation for “nymphomania” in women and lust in men, because, according to Kellogg, impacted stools[4] inside one‘s rectum were stimulating the prostate gland and the female vagina into sexual proclivity.

His prescription was part vintage Graham, part New World ingenuity—a coarse vegetarian diet, one-to-three ounces of bran daily, and paraffin oil with every meal. This regimen wasn‘t without a rational: as any nutritionist will tell you (and as Graham and Kellogg undoubtedly observed themselves), the decline of libido, functional impotence, and infertility are among the very first symptoms of chronic protein deficiencies prevalent among vegans.[5] For similar reasons, numerous religions prescribe vegan diets for monks and nuns. It isn‘t as radical a solution as clitoral mutilation or punitive circumcision, but it‘s equally effective.

The rational behind paraffin oil—the same oil used to light oil lamps—was different. Because all that fiber in the Kellogg‘s diet caused large stools and hemorrhoidal disease, the oil was prescribed as a laxative stimulant and lubricant to ease off straining, anal lacerations, and hemorrhoidal pain.

As with any “drug,” you gain some, lose some more: constant anal leakage was one of paraffin oil‘s most immediate side effects; more serious—it was washing out already meager fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K from the intestines, which caused blindness, infertility, birth defects, immune disorders, diabetes, cancers, osteomalacia (soft bones), and hemophilia (inability of blood to clot). Kellogg was just plain lucky that only the most stubborn diehards—too few to expose the quackery—could stick to the daily regimen of paraffin oil long enough to kill themselves.

Despite his obvious nuttiness, Kellogg lived and worked to 91. He could never have accomplished this feat following his own counsel because to last that long, he would have needed a daily supply of primary (animal) proteins and fat, which can‘t be obtained from a vegetarian diet alone. And that‘s even before taking into account the devastating vitamin deficiency caused by the daily intake of paraffin oil. More likely, Kellogg was a typical hypocrite, who didn‘t practice what he preached, sex or no sex.

Even though Kellogg‘s delirious ideas had more holes than a fine sieve, his message took hold, and his namesake[6] company is still minting a fortune by peddling, among other things, sugared breakfast cereals fortified with fiber. In 2004 alone, the Kellogg Company spent over $3.5 billion[7] just on “promotional expenditures.” No wonder fiber is still on everyone‘s mind and in everyone‘s stools, and remains as popular as ever, even though John Harvey Kellogg is long gone.

So if you believe that the introduction of fiber into the American diet came about as a result of thorough academic research, methodical clinical investigation, and penetrating peer reviews, I‘m sorry to disappoint you, but it didn‘t. It‘s actually based on profane sacrilege[8], fanatical misogynism, medieval prudishness, common quackery, crass commercialism, incomprehensible medical incompetence, and, by the legal standards of today, negligence and malpractice.

Even when a few legitimate attempts were made to validate Graham‘s and Kellogg‘s rational for fiber in regard to constipation and intestinal health, according to the American College of Gastroenterology Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders Task Force, they amounted to nothing at best [link]:
https://www.gutsense.org/fiber-mena...troduction.html

Last edited by Meme#1 : Tue, Sep-04-18 at 22:32.
Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
  #2   ^
Old Wed, Sep-05-18, 06:33
Ms Arielle's Avatar
Ms Arielle Ms Arielle is offline
Senior Member
Posts: 10,323
 
Plan: atkins
Stats: 247/217/153 Female 5'8"
BF:
Progress: 32%
Location: Massachusetts
Default

Looks like the US government has no scientific basis for ANY of their food recommendations.
Reply With Quote
  #3   ^
Old Wed, Sep-05-18, 06:56
JLx's Avatar
JLx JLx is offline
Senior Member
Posts: 2,153
 
Plan: Eat less, less often
Stats: 235/203/191 Female 66
BF:Hi wt: 276,255,235
Progress: 73%
Location: Michigan U.P., USA
Default

Big difference between soluble and insoluble fiber.

https://www.healthline.com/nutritio...-fiber#section7
Reply With Quote
  #4   ^
Old Wed, Sep-05-18, 10:50
Meme#1's Avatar
Meme#1 Meme#1 is online now
Posts: 10,345
 
Plan: Atkins DANDR
Stats: 210/188/160 Female 5'4"
BF:
Progress: 44%
Location: Texas
Default

Fiber‘s Role in Disease:
A Lifelong Demolition Derby

If you consume minor quantities of fiber from natural, unprocessed food, there isn‘t anything wrong with it, because (a) small amounts of natural fiber (which is mostly soluble) will not obstruct your intestines or cause diarrhea, (b) most of it will get fermented in the large intestine, and (c) the remainder will not bulk up the volume of stool high enough to cause any damage from “roughage.” But that‘s not what most Americans do or are urged to do:

Average recommended fiber intake (grams per day)[2]
Age Children Boys Girls Men Women Pregnant
1-3 19 g
4-8 25 g
9-13 31 g 26 g
14-18 38 g 26 g
19-30 38 g 25 g 28 g
31-50 38 g 25 g 28 g
51-70 30 g 21 g
Over 70 21 g 21 g

These are the standing recommendations from the Food and Nutrition Board, a division of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies, which is the body that establishes the nutritional policy guidelines of the U.S. Government. Let‘s analyze these recommendations:

Children from one to eight: The recommended amount is sky-high even by the standards of the American Dietetic Association.[3] It isn‘t based on the actual need, but on the fact that up to 25% of children in this age group suffer from constipation related to the abuse of antibiotics, lack of breastfeeding, poor toilet training, inadequate nutrition, frequent diarrhea, and other factors. In this case, fiber is used as a hard laxative instead of correcting the primary causes of constipation. The large intestine of a one-year-old is about one-tenth the size of a fully-grown adult‘s, but the recommended dose is half of the adult‘s (19 g vs. 38 g or 0.7 vs. 1.3 oz). With that much fiber in the diet, the child will be irritable from abdominal pain, bloated from the large volume of stools, flatulent from gases, prickly with food because eating causes cramps, and prone to frequent bouts of diarrhea alternating with constipation from all of the above. That‘s a direct path to malnutrition, stunted growth, poor development, and academic mediocrity.
Teenagers and adults: Similar amounts of fiber are recommended for teenagers and adults—from 26 to 38 g (0.9–1.3 oz) daily. If you consume that much fiber, it means large stools, inevitable anorectal damage, and eventual dependence on fiber to move the bowels.
The elderly: As people get older, less fiber is recommended (not more, as one may think) because the digestive organs are no longer as agile and healthy. Unfortunately, this is not what most constipated elderly patients hear from medical professionals. The majority urge seniors to increase fiber consumption in order to relieve constipation. Even so, 20 to 30 g (0.7–1.0 oz) of fiber for people over 50, half of whom already suffer from hemorrhoidal disease (and from diverticular disease by the age of 60) is a prescription for trouble.

As the dynamics of a “broken telephone” transform already bad advice, it gets worse, much worse. Here are the “enhanced” recommendations from what is considered one of the best medical and research institutions in the nation, The Mayo Clinic. The article is entitled “Fiber—A Good Carb”:

Fiber—A Good Carb

The June issue of Mayo Clinic Women's HealthSource suggests ways to increase fiber in your diet:

— Eat a high-fiber cereal or add a few spoonfuls of unprocessed wheat bran to your cereal.

— Add bran cereal or unprocessed bran when making foods such as meatloaf, breads, muffins, cakes, and cookies.

— Choose whole-grain bread instead of white bread. Look for breads made with 100 percent whole-wheat flour.

— Substitute whole-wheat flour for half or all of the white flour when baking.

— Experiment with whole grains and whole-grain products such as brown rice, barley, whole-wheat pasta, and bulgur.

— Try adding canned kidney beans, garbanzos and other beans to canned soups or salads.

— Eat snacks that are high in fiber, such as fresh and dried fruits, raw vegetables, low-fat popcorn, and whole-grain crackers.

— Add barley to soups and stews.

— Eat generous quantities of vegetables and fruits.[4]

Mayo Clinic Women‘s HealthSource

If you follow this advice, just one cup (60 g/2 oz) of Kellogg‘s® All-Bran® With Extra Fiber[5] cereal gives you 30 g of fiber, already the daily amount recommended for adults, and many more times for children. And that‘s just for breakfast, before adding in the recommended breads, salads, soups, stews, and “generous quantities of vegetables and fruits” throughout the rest of the day.

Think about it—just one cup of fiber-fortified cereal contains three times more fiber than the maximum recommended daily dose for fiber laxatives, such as Metamucil® (3.0 g up to three times daily[6]). Even that little, just under 12 g of fiber in Metamucil, may cause severe side effects:

Metamucil Side Effects

To all intents and purposes, the indigestible fiber in cereals isn‘t any different from the fiber in Metamucil‘s psyllium—fiber is fiber regardless of the source. People who aren‘t accustomed to a high-fiber diet may have identical side effects whether it is Metamucil or high-fiber cereals.

Shocked? Puzzled? Surprised? Bewildered? Here is a brief Q&A which explains why the side effects of various kinds of fiber consumption are identical:

Q. Why does fiber cause bloating?

Because (a) fiber fermentation inside the intestines produces gases, and (b) because the acidity from fermentation causes intestinal inflammation. Since the absorption of gases is the primary function of the intestine, the combined impact of (a) and (b) blocks their absorption, and causes the intestines to expand just like an air balloon.

Q. Why does fiber cause gas?

The intestines are colonized with symbiotic bacteria (normal intestinal flora), which are essential for many health-sustaining functions. Normally, mucin—a component of mucus—provides bacteria with the nutrients they need. But when fiber—soluble as well as insoluble—reaches the lower intestine, the bacteria go wild, ferment everything in sight, and multiply prodigiously. The fermentation is accompanied by lots of gases, just as with yeast-rising dough or aging champagne. If you don‘t experience gas after ingesting fiber, it means that your intestines lack normal bacteria, and you are affected by dysbacteriosis, a serious pathology which is explained in Chapter 4, Dysbacteriosis.

Q. Why does fiber cause “stomach cramps”?

Actually, not stomach cramps, but abdominal cramps. The cramping is a pain sensation in the abdominal region that results from gases, inflammation, acidity, intestinal obstruction, and large stools, or that stems from regular contractions of affected sections of the small and large intestines.

Q. Why does fiber cause nausea and vomiting?

Once inside the stomach, fiber lumps together and may cause mechanical stimulation of the receptors that activate the vomiting center in the brain. The lumped fiber may also temporarily obstruct the path between the stomach and duodenum, and cause vomiting related to the stomach‘s overload or delayed emptying. If you have gastritis (inflammatory stomach disease) or ulcers, the likelihood of fiber-related nausea and vomiting is even higher because of the fiber‘s contact with extra-sensitive impaired tissues.
Nutrients Reference Lookup

Find nutrients content:

Fiber

Within the food group:

All food groups

Show order:

Highest to lowest

Go to expanded search

Q. Why does fiber cause “rectal bleeding?

Doctors, nutritionists, and dietitians refer to fiber as “bulk” or “roughage,” because it makes stools rough and bulky. When large stools pass through the narrow anal canal, they may lacerate its delicate lining, and cause bleeding. Large stools and the straining needed to expel them are also behind hemorrhoidal disease and anal fissures—lacerations inside the anal canal that won‘t heal. Far more dangerous bleeding may result from ulcerative colitis, caused by the prolonged contact of undigested fiber and large stools with the colorectal mucosal membrane. Ulcerative colitis raises the risk of colorectal cancer by 3,200%. The mechanical and chemical properties of fiber and large stools are also the most likely causes of precancerous polyps.

Q. Why does fiber cause “unrelieved constipation”?

For the same reason it causes anorectal bleeding. When stools become large from excess fiber, many people, particularly children, seniors, and those affected by hemorrhoidal disease or anal fissures, simply can‘t pass them. If this condition isn‘t quickly resolved, it may lead to fecal impaction. The continuous accumulation of impacted stools may cause diverticular disease (the bulging of the colorectal wall), megacolon (permanent stretching of the colorectal walls), and colorectal perforation (the spilling of intestinal content into the abdominal cavity), which is usually lethal.

Q. Why are there no fiber warnings printed on the boxes of fiber-fortified cereals?

Cigarettes didn‘t have any warnings either for a long, long time. It takes a while to change a belief system.

Q. I am young, fit, and healthy, and I consume lots of fiber. And it causes me no harm. Why?

Fiber is very much like a bomb with a time-delay fuse. For a while, it will not visibly affect you, because young people are still active enough to burn off all excess carbs, their intestines are still supple enough to process fiber, and young anorectal organs are still strong enough to handle large stools. Alas, if you keep consuming lots of fiber, your youthful bliss may soon be over. Just ask your parents and grandparents.

Avoiding dietary fiber in food isn‘t an easy task. It is often hidden behind obscure names such as cellulose, β-glucans, pectin, guar gum, cellulose gum, carrageen, agar-agar, hemicellulose, inulin, lignin, oligofructose, fructooligosaccharides, polydextrose, polylos, psyllium, resistant dextrin, resistant starch, and others.

These ingredients are factory-made from wood pulp, cotton, seaweed, husks, skins, seeds, tubers, and selected high-yield plants that aren‘t suitable for human consumption without extra processing. They are widely used to add texture and volume to ersatz food. For example, guar gum or cellulose gum are added to water and dry milk in order to fake yogurt or sour cream consistency, carrageen gives texture to cheap ice cream, and pectin thickens fruit preserves.

The only reliable way of avoiding hidden sources of fiber is this: read the labels! if you didn‘t learn the name of the ingredient on the product‘s label by the first grade, it doesn‘t belong on your plate or inside your gut.

So let‘s stroll along the mouth-to-anus pathway and check out the damage from this fiber orgy.
Reader's testimonial

Since I am a bit of a chatterbox, it has to be really something to render me speechless and that is because there are no words to convey my deep thanks and amazement about how the low/no fiber diet has impacted my very life..

The diarrhea is a thing of the past. How can this be with something so simple to do? Me, who was afraid to leave my house in fear of an "attack."

I have told everyone I know to read your book. As soon as I started reading I just knew you were right. My MD looked at me as if I had lost my mind, but I will be seeing her again in a month and I will encourage her to tell her IBS/UC patients to go low fiber. A.C. (via e-mail)
Fiber‘s effect on the oral cavity: As sticky as glue

The human mouth is primarily intended to cut and chop flesh, not grind indigestible fibers. Unlike humans, cows have so-called hypsodont teeth, which extend very far above the gum line and grow continuously to accommodate a lifetime of wear-and-tear from grinding fibrous grasses.

We aren‘t as lucky—our teeth are brachydont, and aren‘t intended for chewing fiber, otherwise, after a decade or so, you simply wouldn‘t have any teeth left to argue this point with clarity.[8] That‘s why the fiber for human consumption is crushed, milled, or ground first, and requires little or no chewing. But even after processing, it affects the oral cavity with a menacing vengeance:

Obstruction of the salivary glands. Fiber, especially in dry-roasted cereals, has a tendency to obstruct the salivary glands. When that happens, the tongue senses a polyp-like protrusion. Though unpleasant, this benign problem may, in some instances, cause acute inflammation and require treatment with antibiotics.
Dental caries (cavities). Powdered (well-milled) fiber of any kind has a natural tendency to lodge itself inside the abrasions both on the chewing surfaces and between the teeth. Once there, it provides perfect feed for normal oral flora. The bacterial fermentation in the mouth produces lactic acids that bind with the minerals that form the enamel mineral matrix. In turn, the weakening of the matrix causes dental caries. That‘s why all kinds of fiber-rich products, especially cereals, are exceptionally destructive for dental health. Not surprisingly, tooth decay is the second most common disease in the United States. The common cold is the first. Weak immunity related to dysbacteriosis happens to be one of the leading causes of most colds as well.
Periodontal disease (gingivitis, necrotizing ulcerative gingivitis, periodontitis). Pulverized fiber lodges easily inside the gingival sulcus, a pocket that exists between the teeth and the gums (gingiva). The bacterial fermentation inside the sulcus causes inflammation of gingiva, the periodontal ligament, and alveolar bone, and eventual tooth loss. Gingivitis—the initial stage of periodontal disease—is easily recognized by bleeding gums. A receding gum line, even without bleeding, indicates the progression of periodontal disease.

Fiber‘s effect on the esophagus: If not plugged, then burned

The esophagus is the narrow muscular tube that transports chewed food and water from the mouth to the stomach. A chewed mass is called a bolus. The bolus travels the entire length of the esophagus in just a few seconds. This unassuming organ is quite vulnerable to the vagaries of indigestible fiber. The impact is indirect, through the digestive disorders of the stomach, such as heartburn, but the suffering is real—millions of people suffer from dysphagia, the difficulty or inability to swallow food. The other prominent fiber-related complications are:

Esophageal obstruction. Supplemental fiber may rapidly expand and cause an obstruction when not accompanied by a lot of liquid. It isn‘t likely to happen in healthy adults, but is probable in small children, people with a narrowed esophagus or affected by dysphagia (difficulty swallowing), as well as the mentally disabled, old, and infirm.
Heartburn is the most common symptom of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)—a spilling over (reflux) of the stomach‘s content back into the esophagus. The burning sensation emanates from the esophageal mucosa, unprotected from digestive juices and enzymes.
Barrett‘s esophagus (change of mucosa, precursor to cancer), dysphagia (difficulty swallowing), ulceration, bleeding, and esophageal cancer. Indirectly through the GERD, indigestible fiber is a primary causative factor behind these conditions.

Fiber‘s effect on the stomach: The luck stops here

The digestion of protein is the exclusive provenance of the stomach. When gastric digestion commences, the contents of the stomach are churned[9] inside, until it‘s completed (i.e. solid particles of food larger than 2 millimeters, or 0.08,” are no longer detected).

Fiber‘s specific properties—water absorbency, expansion, stickiness (congregation)—interfere with digestion and may cause an array of gastric disorders. Fiber-related problems become more pronounced with age because of the inevitable wear-and-tear on the internal organs. Insoluble fiber affects the stomach particularly hard because it tends to congregate and form lumps, and its rapid expansion fills the stomach with idle bulk.


You don‘t even need to consume that much fiber to feel its punch. For example, TV commercials for antacids are commonly shot inside Mexican restaurants because beans—a main staple of Mexican cuisine—commonly cause heartburn, even though a 100 g (0.22 lb) serving of beans contains a paltry 4 to 5 g of fiber. Just imagine the cumulative impact on the aging stomach of 30 to 40 grams of fiber consumed daily. Here are the most prominent problems:

Nausea and vomiting. The congregated lumps of fiber may cause mechanical stimulation of the receptors that activate the vomiting center in the brain. That much, as you recall, is stated in the side effect section of common fiber supplements.
Obstruction (Gastric outlet obstruction, Duodenal obstruction). The lumps of expanded fiber, primarily from supplements, may temporarily obstruct the path between the stomach and duodenum. If there are no other pathologies, the situation resolves itself with nausea and vomiting.
Gastroparesis (delayed stomach emptying). The stomach‘s peristalsis and digestion are completed when specialized receptors no longer detect undigested components over 2 mm. The undigested lumps of fiber may considerably extend the duration of the gastric phase of digestion because the stomach can‘t distinguish between an undigested chunk of meat and a lump of fiber. This problem is particularly acute among older individuals, who may have weak peristaltic contractions of the stomach. The digestion can extend from the customary 4–6 hours to 10, 12, and beyond. The extended exposure of the stomach lining to digestive juices and enzymes, particularly while laying down, may cause inflammation and ulceration of the esophagus and upper stomach regions (cardia and fundus), that aren‘t as well-protected as its lower regions (antrum and pylorus). [The original meaning of gastroparesis is the paralysis (paresis) of the stomach‘s peristalsis related to nerve damage from trauma, diabetes, surgery, medication, and other causes. Today this term is broadly used as delayed stomach emptying irrespective of nerve damage – ed.]
Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD). Simply speaking, GERD results from two primary factors: overloading the stomach with food and liquids, and delayed digestion (indigestion). Because indigestible fiber expands four to five times its size, it is the largest contributor to the stomach‘s overload. Absence of indigestion, heartburn, and reflux is one of the most immediate and pronounced benefits of low- or fiber-free diets.
Dyspepsia. A general term that describes non-specific pain and discomfort that emanates from the stomach (upper middle abdominal region). The sensation of pain may result from conditions described above and below. The pain may become more pronounced after a meal. Meals heavy in all kinds of fiber cause more pain because of the volume and the extended duration of digestion. Some medical writers refer to dyspepsia as “indigestion.” Well, guess what substance doesn‘t digest in the stomach?
Gastritis. All of the above conditions, related to fiber interfering with or extending gastric digestion, are the primary causes of gastritis—an inflammation of the stomach‘s mucosa, caused by the inability of the stomach‘s lining to withstand its own aggressive environment. The risk of gastritis goes up exponentially if you‘re under a great deal of stress (it inhibits digestion); consume alcohol (in small amounts it stimulates digestion, but inhibits in large); drink coffee, chew gum, or smoke (all three stimulate digestion); regularly take aspirin and other NSAIDs drugs; or are infected with H.pylori bacteria. The fiber adds to this mix far more than the proverbial two cents. Please note that there is nothing wrong with stimulating digestion when appropriate. The problems develop when the digestion is stimulated inappropriately—between meals, before going to bed, while experiencing reflux, dyspepsia, and similar circumstances.
Gastric Ulcer (Peptic ulcer disease). A perforation of the stomach‘s mucosa causes ulcers. Gastritis commonly precedes ulceration and bleeding. All of the causative factors behind gastritis apply to ulcers as well. Fiber extends digestion. The longer the digestion lasts, the more difficult, if not outright impossible, for the ulcers to heal. That‘s why people who are admitted to a hospital with a bleeding ulcer are placed on a liquids-only diet. If a zero-fiber diet helps ulcers to heal, a low-fiber one isn‘t as likely to cause them.
Hiatal (Hiatus) Hernia. The diaphragm (midriff) is a muscular membrane that separates the heart and lungs (thoracic cavity) from the digestive organs (abdominal cavity). The esophagus connects with the stomach through the esophageal hiatus—an opening in the diaphragm. A pathological protrusion (herniation) of the stomach‘s upper wall above the diaphragm through that opening is called hiatal hernia. This condition affects over 40% of the population[10] in the United States. When the stomach capacity is exceeded by food and fluids, the upward pressure created by peristalsis (at the bottom of the stomach) causes its upper walls to prolapse into the opening. Fiber is the only food that expands four to five times its original size once inside the stomach. This expansion creates strong volumetric pressure long after the meal has already been consumed. Neither proteins, nor fats, nor soluble carbohydrates can expand beyond their initial volume. A horizontal position (i.e. while lying down) is likely to contribute to herniation. You may have heard that herniation contributes to heartburn, dyspepsia, gastritis, and peptic ulcers. It isn‘t so—the hiatal hernia simply mirrors the state of the affected stomach, and these conditions are already present there, regardless of the hernia. Unless patients stop recklessly stuffing their stomachs with fiber, the majority of surgeries to remove hiatal hernias are also useless.

As you can see, the relationship between the stomach and the fiber is awkward at best, ruinous at worse. Well, what else would you expect when matching a primary digestive organ with an indigestible substance?
Fiber‘s effect on the small intestine: Not welcome at any price

The journey of food from the plate to the large intestine—that is, through the mouth, esophagus, stomach, and small intestine—normally takes about 24 hours, depending on what was on that plate.

The small intestine is long and thin—about 7 meters (23‘) of coiled tubing laid out in a tight serpentine shape (3.5 to 4 cm wide in adults), which is about the width of a half-a-dollar coin.

The more insoluble fiber there is in the meal, the longer the trip, because of the bottlenecks in the small intestine, which is an organ nature intended for moving along liquid chyme, not lumps of heavy fiber. If you doubt this, just visualize the following experiment:

To replicate the chewing action, use a fork to crush a serving of high-fiber cereal in a bowl;
To reproduce the stomach‘s churning, add water or milk to the bowl, mix thoroughly, and let the crushed cereal soak in the liquid;
To imitate the small intestine, cut a piece of garden hose, about 7 meters long, and lay it down into a serpentine shape—a good approximation of the small intestine‘s architecture;
To simulate the propulsion of food through the small intestine, keep adding the “digested” cereals through a funnel on top until it appears at the other end of the hose. Or will it appear?

It‘s highly unlikely. The more fiber in the cereal, the faster this dense, thick, semi-liquid mass will clog the hose (intestine) at the bottom of its very first bend, and there are quite a few more bends left to go. To propel the cereal to the end of the hose, you‘d need to keep adding more of the mixture from the top, in order to push out the jam in the middle—a process strikingly similar to pressure-stuffing homemade sausages with ground meat.

Unlike the clumps of cereal, any liquid poured through the funnel, no matter how thick, will soon reach the end thanks to the inscape-able laws of gravitation. As long as the exit is located below the en-trance, no clogging occurs, even if the hose is old and worn out.

If you chew your food thoroughly, and your stomach digests it well, it‘s transformed to chyme—a thick liquid without any solids. And the first organ to greet chyme is the duodenum.

Duodenum. Literally twelve fingers‘ breadths, the duodenum is the first and the shortest (18–25 cm) section of the small intestine. The pyloric valve (sphincter) separates the stomach from the duodenum. When the gastric phase of digestion is completed, this valve controls the transfer of chyme into the duodenum. Once inside, the chyme is neutralized with bicarbonate, mixed with bile and pancreatic juices, and the intestinal phase of digestion begins.

Fiber is particularly hard on the duodenum, because, unlike the stomach, the duodenum isn‘t expandable, but a small, narrow, and easy-to-clog circular tube shaped like the letter C. That‘s why duodenitis (a condition identical to gastritis) and duodenal ulcer (a condition identical to gastric ulcer) strike their victims in their early twenties, twenty to thirty years ahead of the peak occurrences of gastritis and gastric ulcer.

It‘s a well-known fact among military doctors that duodenitis and duodenal ulcers are quite common among recent recruits. No surprise there—beans, legumes, whole grain cereals, whole wheat pasta, and bread make up the largest share of military rations, and young soldiers are particularly prodigious eaters after the daily grind of military life.

The duodenum possesses a few specifics that make it particularly vulnerable to obstruction with fiber. The ducts from the liver, gallbladder, and pancreas congregate into the common bile duct and terminate inside the duodenum. They supply a prodigious amount of bile (400 to 800 ml daily) and pancreatic juice (up to 1500 to 3000 ml daily). It doesn‘t take long to cause considerable damage to the liver, gallbladder, and pancreas by blocking, even partially, a considerable outflow of these fluids.

The blockage of biliary and pancreatic ducts can be purely mechanical or caused by duodenitis, an inflammation that affects the lining of the duodenum and the common duct itself. Again, the prolonged contact of a fibrous, acidified mass with the duodenal mucosa is the most likely cause of both inflammation and blockage. The conditions that follow are quite common:

Pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas). Besides fiber there isn‘t any other substance in human nutrition that enters the duodenum not only as is, but also expanded many times its original size. Lo and behold, the recent (17th edition) of The Merck Manual of Diagnosis and Therapy confirms this fact: “recent data indicate that obstruction of the pancreatic duct in the absence of billiary reflux can produce pancreatitis.”[11] Acute pancreatitis is quite common in toddlers, who are placed on solid food, which means loads of fiber from cereals, bread, pasta, fruits, and vegetables. The condition itself often remains undiagnosed, while its most prominent symptom—the onset of juvenile diabetes (type I), a failure to produce insulin because of acute inflammation—manifests itself almost immediately. Here is yet another ruinous aspect of fiber that strikes so early in life.
Cholecystitis (Inflammation of the gallbladder). Gallstones are the primary (90%) cause of acute (sudden, severe) and chronic cholecystitis. Gallstones are formed from concentrated bile salts when the outflow of bile from the gallbladder is blocked. The gallstones cause inflammation either by irritating the gallbladder mucosa or by obstructing the duct that connects it to the duodenum. The gallstones are the secondary factor, because before they can form, something else must first obstruct the biliary ducts. Just like with pancreatitis, that “something” is either inflammatory disease or obstruction caused by fiber.

Women are affected by gallstones far more than men, because they are more likely to maintain a “healthy” diet, which nowadays means a diet that is low in fat and high in fiber. Since the gallbladder concentrates bile pending a fatty meal, no fat in the meal means no release of bile. The longer concentrated bile remains in the gallbladder, the higher the chance for gallstones to form.

Upper (jejunum) and lower (ileum) small intestine. The duodenum transitions into the jejunum, which comprises the upper two-fifths of the small intestine. It‘s distinguished from the ileum by its larger width and thickness, slightly more pronounced mucosa structure, and deeper color, because it embodies more blood vessels.

It‘s somewhat ironic that the name jejunum is derived from the Latin fasting, because during dissection this particular segment of the small intestine was always found empty. Apparently, the fathers of anatomy, who named the internal organs, hadn‘t yet been confronted with the scourge of indigestible fiber; otherwise this particular section of the small intestine would be called intestinum repletus (filled intestine).

The final three-fifths of the small intestine are called the ileum (from Latin‘s groin, meaning near groin). The ileum is narrower (3.5–3.75 cm), has thinner walls, and is not as vascular. At the very end, the ileocal valve terminates the small intestine and prevents the content of cecum (the first section of large intestine) from spilling back into the small intestine.

One look at the small intestine, laid out inside the abdominal cavity like a tangled, convoluted garden hose, makes it apparent that this organ was designed to move fluids only, and that it‘s remarkably easy to jam with solid, undigested stuff. There is only one substance that can get down there undigested and expanded many times its size—indigestible fiber. And when that happens, here are the possible outcomes (a partial list):

Mechanical obstruction. The medical term for an undigested mass that forms inside the stomach or intestines and gets stuck there is bezoar (pronounced bee-zawr). Indigestible fiber is the only consumable substance that doesn‘t digest, and has the potential to form bezoars, which cause mechanical obstruction of the small intestine. When bezoars are lodged beyond the reach of the endoscope, abdominal surgery is the only option available to remove the obstruction. Bezoars are rare among healthy adults, but more common among children (whose intestines are comparatively tiny and underdeveloped). Old and infirm individuals, whose intestines lack the muscular tone needed to propel anything but fluids, are also vulnerable. That‘s why indigestible fiber should be taboo for children, or very old, infirm, and bed-ridden patients.
Enteritis (inflammation of the small intestine). The insides of the small intestine are covered with a pinkish mucosal membrane, superficially similar to the insides of one‘s mouth or vagina. The assimilation of digested nutrients into the bloodstream is the sole function of the intestinal mucosa. It can only assimilate nutrients dissolved in liquid chyme. It isn‘t intended to transport anything other than mildly acidic chyme (pH 6.0 to 6.5). Once inside the stomach, undigested fiber soaks up acid and enzymes like a sponge. When expanded fiber enters the small intestine, the permanent contact with the delicate mucosa causes mechanical and chemical damage, which in turn causes mucosal inflammation (enteritis). Once inflamed, the mucosa can no longer absorb the nutrients and gases formed during digestion, and the intestines expand, causing bloating and cramping, which is often accompanied by severe pain.
Crohn‘s disease. If left unchecked long enough, enteritis progresses into Crohn‘s disease. The mucosal inflammation gets so severe that it may cause intestinal obstruction—a condition similar to a stuffy nose during a cold, flu, or allergy attack, all of which cause acute inflammation of the nasal mucosa. The inflammation may happen at any point along the length of the small and large intestines, but it‘s most commonly localized in the bottom section of the ileum—the place where clogging with undigested fiber, bacterial fermentation, and fecal reflux is likeliest to occur. According to The Merck Manual of Diagnosis and Therapy: “Over the past few decades, the incidence of Crohn‘s disease has increased in the Western populations of Northern European and Anglo-Saxon ethnic derivation, third-world populations, blacks, and Latin Americans.”[12] What else happened during “the past few decades?” A substantial increase in the consumption of indigestible fiber, of course.
Hernia. When intestines protrude through the abdominal wall or inside the scrotum, they cause hernias. About 5 million Americans suffer from this unpleasant, potentially lethal condition. Coughing, straining, or lifting weights isn‘t generally enough to push the intestines so hard that they pierce the abdominal muscles or squeeze down into the scrotum (inguinal hernia). Intestinal bloating from inflammatory diseases caused by indigestible fiber is the primary force capable of expanding the intestines so much that they don‘t have enough room inside the abdominal cavity, and may ripple through the abdominal wall. The physical exertion that causes the actual herniation is a secondary force. Straining to move large stools (caused by fiber) is one of the major causes of hernia as well.
Malnutrition, and vitamin and mineral deficiencies. All the hard work that the body did breaking food down into basic nutrients—simple sugars, amino acids, fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals—is wasted unless they get assimilated into the blood-stream to become energy, electrolytes, hormones, enzymes, neurotransmitters, tissues, and other substances that keep our bodies functional and healthy. This final act of digestion takes place throughout the entire length of the small intestine, unless it‘s affected by inflammation. In this case, the essential nutrients will not digest, even if your diet contains plenty of them. Since indigestible fiber is the major source of intestinal inflammation, it is also a major cause of malnutrition and mineral and vitamin deficiencies. Pernicious anemia, which is a chronic shortage of dietary iron, folic acid, and vitamin B12, related to gastric and intestinal inflammation, is one of the most common forms of such a deficiency. It‘s also the most difficult to overcome, because regular oral supplements won‘t digest, no matter what the dose, unless the fiber is completely withdrawn and the stomach and intestines permitted to heal.

Fiber‘s effect on the large intestine: Demolition completed

The large intestine (a.k.a. gut, colon, bowel, entrails, and viscera) is a bona fide digestive organ. Its time is primarily taken up with the fermentation of undigested carbohydrates and assimilation of nutrients, water, and electrolytes. In the process, the large intestine converts the remnants of liquid chyme into stools and expels them. The more undigested fiber there is in the chyme, the larger and harder the stools become.

The adjective “large” next to the word “intestine” is misleading—the large intestine isn‘t that large vis-à-vis the small intestine, but wide. In Russian, for example, the intestines aren‘t small or large, but, respectively (and correctly), thin for small and thick for large. Length-wise, the large intestine is under 1.5 meters (5‘); width-wise, it‘s 6 to 9 cm (2.3–3.5”) at the base, narrowing down at the end.

The large intestine is made up of four functional sections that encircle the small intestine. It starts with a sac at the bottom that metamorphoses into a tube that looks like the letter “U” upside down. At the opposite end of the tube, another sac, terminated by a tight sphincter, completes the U-turn. Respectively, these are the cecum, colon, rectum, and anal canal.

Cecum. The cecum is a large pouch at the bottom of the ascending colon, also known as the blind gut. It is called blind because it only has one exit, just like a blind alley. The cecum is located at the lower-right-hand side of the abdomen. It collects chyme from the ileum, which is the final segment of the small intestine.

The cecum can hold up to 1.5 liters (1.58 quarts) of chyme. A sphincter (ileocecal valve) prevents chyme from spilling back into the small intestine whenever you lie down, bend down, or stand on your head.

As water, electrolytes, and micronutrients get absorbed into the bloodstream, the chyme is slowly propelled up the ascending colon. By this stage, it begins transformation into what we call stools or feces.

The cecum‘s most famous sibling—the appendix—is attached to the cecum‘s inside wall, further to the left, just under the intersection with the small intestine. Despite what you may have seen in pictures, the appendix is pointed upwards, not downwards, and its orifice faces sideways, not down.

Colon. The terms colon and large intestine are often used interchangeably, although technically this isn‘t correct. Actually, the colon is the tubing between the cecum and rectum, and it is divided into four parts: the first three are named for their direction: ascending, transverse, descending, and the fourth—sigmoid—for its sigma-like shape.

This is why medical professionals use the term colorectal in connection with such words as cancer, exam, surgery, x-ray, etc., because saying “an exam of the large intestine” is cumbersome, while “colon exam” is incorrect: doctors must pass and examine the rectum before reaching the colon, hence the term “colorectal exam.”

The word colon gave birth to numerous related terms, none of them particularly pleasant, such as colic (abdominal pain emanating from the colon), colitis (inflammation of the large intestine), colonoscopy (examination with an optical scope), colonics (a type of generous two-way enema), and colonic (specific to the large intestine, as in colonic bacteria).

The fecal mass goes up through the ascending colon, makes a sharp left, passes the transverse colon, turns down into the descending colon, and then makes a slight right into the sigmoid colon—the ramp leading into the rectum, and the last stop before being dumped. The mucus secretion (binding factor), water removal (drying factor), and bacterial action (volumetric factor) solidify the remnants of liquid chyme into solid stools before they reach the descending colon. The descending and sigmoid colon essentially perform a storage function for ready-to-be eliminated stools.

Rectum. The rectum is a stretchable, muscular sac, 10 to 15 cm (4”–6”) long, situated at the end of the sigmoid colon. It‘s right above the anus, and it shares a central space inside one‘s pelvis with the reproductive organs. Not romantic, but it works. The term rectal ampoule is often applied to the rectum‘s shape, because it‘s narrow at the bottom and dilates further up to form an ampoule-like appearance.

Anal Canal. This is the least appreciated organ, and usually the first to get into trouble because it‘s so tiny. The anal canal‘s maximum aperture is tight and narrow—3.5 cm (1.37”). The anal canal itself is about 3 cm (1.18”) long, and is encircled with two taut muscular sphincters—internal and external. Both sphincters perform in concert to keep the stools safely inside the rectum. We can consciously control only the external sphincter, while the internal is controlled autonomously, by the body itself.

The elimination of stools is the final act of digestion. Technically, it should be as easy as eating—the first act of digestion. When everything works just right, it is, but when it doesn‘t, it becomes a long and awful ordeal, first because of large stools caused by undigested fiber, second because of all the damage caused by large stools.

As with everything else in life, timing is everything with digestion: the mouth is busy chewing an average meal for 15–20 minutes; the healthy stomach digests an average mixed meal in 5 to 7 hours; the small intestine takes about 24 hours to transport chyme down to the large intestine; and the large intestine processes stools in about 72 hours.

In young, healthy people, indigestible fiber slows down stomach digestion and the transport time in the small intestine, but considerably speeds up the transport time (motility) in the large intestine, sometimes down to 24 hours. When this happens, the person may experiences diarrhea and cramping, which are usually “diagnosed” as irritable bowel syndrome. The word “diagnosed” is in quotes, because what‘s happening isn‘t a disease, but the natural reaction of a healthy colon to an unhealthy content. If caught early, the “syndrome” disappears a few days after the fiber is removed from the diet.

When a person is no longer young, or the digestive organs aren‘t in perfect shape, everything takes longer—the digestion in the stomach, the transport of chyme through the small intestine, and colonic motility. And when fiber is added, it takes even longer:

Functional Constipation

Those with defecation disorders or slow transit respond [to fiber] much less favorably. Those with severe colonic inertia may not be helped by fiber, since there is decreased smooth muscle contractile activity.[13]

Rome II: The Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders, C3: p. 389;
by Douglas A. Drossman (editor); [link]

That‘s why fiber affects the large intestine the most, earlier than any other organ, why its impact becomes much greater and more obvious, and why the list of associated diseases is so much longer. Here are the conditions that one may get, or have already, from consuming too much fiber:

Appendicitis. Appendicitis is the sudden swelling and inflammation of the appendix. It generally follows the obstruction of the appendix by undigested food or a large accumulation of hardened stools (fecal impaction). There is only one type of food that reaches the cecum undigested, and that‘s plant fiber, including seeds and husks. The swelling occurs because the bacteria trapped inside the appendix continues to divide, grow in volume, and generate refuse that has nowhere to go. Inflammation follows the swelling, and then sharp pain and other symptoms ensue. Without prompt surgical removal, the swollen appendix may burst and spill the cecum‘s “dirty” contents into the sterile peritoneal cavity, and cause peritonitis—an infectious inflammation of the membrane (peritoneum) that lines the insides of the abdomen. Without rapid and competent surgical treatment, the chances of recovering from acute peritonitis are slim.

Appendicitis is more prevalent among children precisely because their tiny ceca (plural of cecum) and appendixes are so much easier to clog with undigested fiber and large stools. When infected appendixes are removed in children, in many cases the source of obstruction and infection are undigested seeds, nuts, and grains.

Think twice before force-feeding your child fiber-rich food or supplements. Most children dislike raw, cooked, or pureed fibrous vegetables, such as broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, cabbage, and spinach, because their reaction to fiber, literally and figuratively, is visceral (by the gut): discomfort, flatulence, cramps, and sharp pain. And these “veggies” aren‘t even that fiber-rich (just one or two grams per serving) until you recognize that just five grams of fiber for a three-year old is about the same as thirty to forty grams for an adult, which is almost twice the amount of the average daily fiber intake for people in the U.S.[14]
Nutrients Reference Lookup

Find nutrients content:

Fiber

Within the food group:

All food groups

Show order:

Highest to lowest

Go to expanded search

The combination of fecal impaction and fiber laxatives may also cause appendicitis in adults. It just takes longer to “stuff” a much larger adult‘s bowel with fibrous stool, until the cecum is completely clogged with undigested fiber. It takes about two to four weeks to fill the large intestine to capacity, depending on the amount of fiber in the diet and the degree of distention.

(The overviews that follow are shorter than those above because these conditions are discussed in greater depth in Part II of this book.)

Dysbacteriosis (dysbiosis). The fermentation of undigested fiber causes acidity inside the large intestine great enough to damage intestinal flora. The damage isn‘t likely to occur with minor amounts of fiber, but is highly probable when fiber is consumed in excess. This and other causes of dysbacteriosis are discussed in depth in Chapter 4, Dysbacteriosis.
Bloating and flatulence. The fermentation of fiber by colonic bacteria creates gases. The gases in excess of normal vital activity cause abdominal distention (bloating). Gases are normal in human digestion, excess gases aren‘t.
Abdominal cramps. A high volume of chyme, large stools, and gases (all related to fiber action) cause mechanical pressure on the intestinal walls, which is especially pronounced after meals, when peristalsis commences.
Diarrhea. Soluble fiber is a known causative factor of osmotic diarrhea and is commonly used as a laxative. The laxative/diarrhea effect depends on the amount of fiber taken and the status of intestinal flora. The absence of normal intestinal flora (dysbacteriosis) contributes to diarrhea.
Constipation. Indigestible fiber has a pronounced laxative effect in healthy people because it increases stool size and stimulates motility—the propulsion of stools through the large intestine. In people who already have colorectal disorders related to age, medication, dysbacteriosis, or other causes, the enlargement of stools has the opposite effect: it causes anorectal damage and even more severe constipation. In healthy people, anorectal damage caused by large stools is gradual, and the onset of constipation is delayed.
Hemorrhoidal disease. By some accounts, over 50% of Americans suffer from hemorrhoidal disease by the age of 50, and by other accounts, over two-thirds do. Large stools related to fiber are the primary cause of this self-perpetuating condition. As it develops, enlarged internal hemorrhoids permanently constrict the anal canal. The narrowing of the anal canal requires more straining to move the bowels. The more the person strains, the more the hemorrhoids become enlarged, and the need for straining increases.
Straining: Normal defecation requires no more effort than urination. Large stools caused by fiber (and resulting constipation) require additional external force to move them because they exceed the width of the anal canal. This action is accomplished with the help of the abdominal and pelvic muscles. The applied force and pressure on the intestinal lining and walls from large stools causes inevitable damage to the rectum and anal canal. The resulting conditions are extremely painful, because the anus has the highest degree of innervation among all of the alimentary canal‘s organs:

- Anal abscess. An injury of the anal canal mucosal lining may cause small ulcerations. The spontaneous healing of the ulcer may leave encapsulated pus inside the wound. This condition is extremely painful, because of the continuous pressure of the pus on the upper skin layer. This condition may require treatment with antibiotics and/or surgery.

- Anal fissures—a tear in the skin lining the anus. Fissures are particularly hard to heal, because each consecutive hard stool damages newly grown tissues and breaks the wound apart.

- Anal fistulas (non-congenital)—permanent ducts (passages) from the anal canal into the perianal (around anus) region or vagina. Fistulas form as a result of ulcerations, fissures, or abscesses inside the anal canal. The fistulas cause the continuous spillage of stools, which is particularly unsafe when the fistula terminates inside the vagina. In almost all cases, the elimination of fistulas requires surgery.

- Rectal prolapse. This condition is likely to affect older people, and is characterized by the protrusion of the rectal wall or just the rectal mucosa through the anus (to the outside). Rectal prolapse requires urgent medical intervention.

- Withdrawal of stools. This problem is particularly acute among children, and it happens in response to pain and discomfort related to the above complications. The withdrawal of stools causes fecal impaction, which usually requires manual disimpaction, because laxatives are no longer effective. The most dangerous thing one can do (and often does) in this case is to give a child more fiber. In this case, there is a high probability of stools spilling into the small intestine, and fiber causing obstructions.

There is just one solution to straining-related complications—elimination of fiber from the diet, resulting in the semisoft or even watery stools that will allow healing, and soft, small stools thereafter. (See Chapter 11, Avoiding the Perils of Transition.)

Diverticular disease (diverticulosis). When fiber increases stool size beyond the normal confinements of the large intestine, it causes the outward protrusion of the intestinal wall. The pouches that are formed are called diverticula (plural). When the diverticulum (singular) gets inflamed, the condition is called diverticulitis. The diverticulitis is localized to specific diverticula because they may retain a fibrous fecal mass indefinitely. The eventual inflammations inside the diverticula are caused by the same mechanical, chemical, and bacteriological factors that are behind IBS, ulcerative colitis, and Crohn‘s disease. (See Chapter 9, Ulcerative Colitis and Crohn‘s Disease.)
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS): Along with undigested fiber‘s mechanical properties, increased acidity causes irritation of the mucosal lining inside the colon, hence the term irritable bowel. In most cases, before the onset of ulcerative colitis, the removal of fiber from the diet reverses IBS within a few days. A reintroduction of fiber into the diet brings this condition back as soon as it reaches the large intestine.
Ulcerative colitis. Dysbacteriosis and fermentation-related acidity strips the intestinal mucosa of its protective properties and leads to ulcerations of the intestinal walls. The healing of these ulcers is further complicated by a pronounced deficiency of vitamin K (blood-clotting factor), which is caused by dysbacteriosis. The removal of fiber and reinoculation of the large intestine with bacteria is often all that is needed to reverse both conditions.
Megacolon. The stretching of the large intestine by expanded, impacted fiber compromises colonic motility (the normal peristaltic transport of stools inside the large intestine), resulting in a condition known as colonic inertia, which is a precursor to fecal impaction (an abnormal accumulation of compressed stools, which stretch the colon and rectum even further); hence, megacolon.
Anorectal nerve damage. The irreversible stretching (distention) of the rectum, and anorectal nerve damage (both caused by large stools from fiber) diminishes defecation reflexes, and in turn requires even more stool volume (obtained from fiber and/or laxatives, of course) to stimulate defecation. At some point the reflexes may disappear altogether, which is a problem that can be alleviated only with even more fiber and/or laxatives.
Fecal Incontinence. The loss of anal sphincter control causes an uncontrolled escape of stools. The condition is further exacerbated with excess gas, because the sphincter tone isn‘t sufficient to contain it, and the release of gas provokes spillage. Both problems—anal sphincter damage and excess gas—are caused by, respectively, large stools comprised mainly from fiber and bacterial fiber fermentation. Obviously, the exclusion of all types of fiber is the first step in combating this devastating problem.
Precancerous polyps. The normal bacteria that reside in the intestinal mucosa (epithelium) provide a non-specific immune defense against external pathogens and internal cellular pathologies. Dysbacteriosis strips the epithelium of its protective properties. Mechanical abrasion from large stools (caused by fiber) and chemical damage from fermentation-related acidity (from too much fiber) contribute to cellular damage, and the formation of polyps—neoplasms (new growth of tissues) that protrude from the epithelium, and have a high risk of becoming malignant tumors.
Colon cancer. A single polyp increases the risk of colon cancer by 2.5% at 5 years, 8% at 10 years, and 24% at 20 years.[15] Ulcerative colitis alone increases the risk of colon cancer 3,200% (32 times). Both conditions—polyps and ulcerative colitis—are connected by the same common denominators, fiber and dysbacteriosis.

Fiber‘s effect on the genitourinary organs: Unlucky neighbors

The bladder and reproductive organs (collectively, genitourinary organs) share common space at the bottom of the abdominal cavity with the small and large intestines. The sigmoid colon bend is situated right next to the bladder; a thin wall separates the female rectum from the vagina; the uterus and ovaries are enveloped by intestines; the male prostate gland is located in the immediate proximity of the rectum. You get the picture.

This layout may offend your sense of sexual aesthetics, but it has been working quite well for millennia, except when the intestines are expanded by large stools and gases “courtesy” of fiber. The resulting outward pressure of the distended intestines on the reproductive organs, even slight pressure, causes symptoms identical to genitourinary disorders, such as prostatitis, endometritis, cystitis, and urethritis—respectively, an inflammation of the prostate gland, endometrium, bladder, and urinary canal.

Unfortunately, modern day gynecologists and urologists aren‘t trained to recognize the impact of intestinal disorders and large stools on the genitourinary organs, and may prescribe potent pain relievers, antibiotics, diuretics, or antidepressants to treat these phantom conditions instead of advising patients to eliminate fiber, large stools, or treat constipation. Here are some of the results:

Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS). The impact of fiber‘s side effects is particularly profound prior to menstruation. The physical metamorphosis that precedes menstruation—water and sodium retention, enlargement of the endometrium and ovaries, egg movement through the fallopian tube(s)—predisposes women to premenstrual syndrome. The ensuing symptoms, such as Mittelschmerz (middle pain, a condition related to the enlargement of ovaries during ovulation), cramping (primary dysmenorrhea, a condition not related to physical anomaly), abdominal pain, and backache, are often related to undue pressure by the distended intestines on the uterus, fallopian tubes, and ovaries, which become hypersensitive during ovulation.

Correspondingly, the emotional aspect of PMS isn‘t related to hormonal changes so much, but to the constant presence of pain and discomfort, which trigger the continuous release of stress hormones. In turn, stress hormones cause migraine headaches and patterns of social interaction typical for PMS sufferers.

PMS is often accompanied by intermittent constipation and diarrhea. Evidently, both conditions are usually already present before menstruation. They simply become more pronounced and noticeable during this period.

Nausea and Vomiting during Pregnancy (NVP). If fiber causes so many problems during menstruation, imagine its impact during pregnancy, especially the last two trimesters, when NVP can no longer be written off to hormonal changes. That‘s why many pregnant women unconsciously switch to liquid-only diets, in most cases with deleterious effects for both themselves and the fetus, as these diets may lack essential proteins, fats, and micronutrients.

NVP is easy to understand: the metamorphosis that is taking place in the abdominal cavity to accommodate the expanding uterus affects the stomach‘s ability to expand and accommodate fiber; the outward pressure on the small intestines increases the chances for intestinal obstructions by fiber. A pattern of diarrhea and vomiting caused by all of the above causes a predisposition to constipation.

If you‘re planning to become pregnant, study this book and wean yourself off fiber in advance of your pregnancy. If you‘re already pregnant, and suffer from NVP, just follow the guidelines in later chapters to restore the normal physiological functioning of the large intestine, so you can get off fiber without incurring the wrath of constipation, that comes with sudden fiber withdrawal. It will not only reduce or eliminate NVP altogether, but will also prevent you from developing numerous gastric disorders, related to persistent vomiting, diarrhea, and constipation.

Restoring normal intestinal flora in advance of pregnancy and maintaining adequate nutrition will improve the quality of your breast milk and enhance your ability to breastfeed. And, of course, all of the above will have a positive impact on fetal development, and the health, growth, intellect, and future life of your child.

Rectocele. The prolapse (herniation) of the rectal wall into the vagina is another common affliction related to fiber consumption (around an 18.4% prevalence[16] in the general population). Rectocele is most likely related to large stools and severe straining. Most, if not all, medical texts on this topic don‘t mention the rectal connection, and write off rectocele to abnormal childbirth, weakness of the pelvic support system, and unspecified congenital conditions. These are doubtful assertions, because rectocele affects women who have never been pregnant, the incidence of rectocele increases with age—which means the condition wasn‘t congenital, and the rectum wall can‘t simply prolapse into the vagina unless some external force pushes it down there. For most women, fiber-laden stools and straining are most likely these forces. To avoid corrective surgery and enjoy sex into the wee years, cutting out fiber, and avoiding constipation and straining, is the best prescription to preventing rectocele.

Vaginitis. An inflammation of the vagina‘s mucosal lining related to vaginal yeast infection (vulvovaginal candidiasis), which is characterized by an enlargement of the labia, inflammation of the external opening of the urethra, itching, vaginal discharge, odor, and pain during intercourse and urination. Candidiasis is directly related to dysbacteriosis, that may be caused, contributed to, or sustained by excess fiber. The absence of normal flora causes an overgrowth of yeast bacteria (Candida albicans) and a reduction of non-specific immunity.

Candidiasis affects up to 75%[17] of American women during their lifetimes—a number which accurately mirrors societal dietary dogma. Fiber reduction by itself isn‘t sufficient to eliminate candidiasis. An affected person and her sexual partner must restore normal intestinal flora as described in Chapter 11, Avoiding the Perils of Transition (see page 211 or here).

Candidiasis infects men via sexual intercourse with an infected partner or from contamination of the urethral opening with his own fecal matter. In this case, the condition is likely to be diagnosed as urinary tract infection (UTI) or prostatitis, and a harsh treatment with antibiotics may follow, which will only exacerbate dysbacteriosis and its side effects.

Urinary obstruction. The male urethra, the canal that discharges urine from the bladder, passes through the prostate gland. An accumulation of large stools in the rectum (typical for organic constipation and fecal impaction) causes strong pressure on the prostate gland which in turn squeezes the urethra and blocks urine flow. This blockage of the urethra interferes with normal urination, may stimulate frequent urination, and cause pain typical of prostatitis and benign prostate enlargement.

Sexual dysfunction. Finally, keep in mind that just a thin wall separates the rectum from the vagina, and an equally thin wall separates the rectum from the prostate gland. That‘s why even the mildest intercourse is capable of stimulating the defecation urge or the release of gas in the least desirable moment. The fear of such an occurrence tenses the anal muscles in both men and women, inhibits erection and arousal, and precludes orgasms, particularly among affected women. Good sex 'ain‘t' a laxative, though it often works that way. If you wish to enjoy relaxing, worry-free sex, cut out the fiber and finish reading this book.
Fiber‘s effect on heart disease: A bargain with the devil

Dietary fiber represents from 5 to 10% of the total content of consumed carbohydrates. For example, to get just the 30 grams of recommended daily fiber in natural form, you need to consume 300 to 600 grams of carbohydrates. But excessive carbohydrate consumption is the primary cause of diabetes, obesity, hypertension, elevated triglycerides, and hyperinsulinemia—the best researched and most obvious precursors of heart disease.

In this context, the idea of protecting yourself from heart disease with a high-carb, high-fiber diet is as preposterous as the suggestion to treat high blood pressure with bloodletting (less blood being equated with less blood pressure). That the patient would soon die from anemia or cardiac arrest caused by acute hypotension (extremely low blood pressure)—well, that‘s a problem for the undertaker. Nonetheless, the idea of using dietary fiber against heart disease received some traction, because certain types of fiber in combination with a low-fat diet slightly reduce LDL (“bad”) cholesterol.

To avoid the onslaught of natural carbs, you may try to fool the system, and replace these carbs with just fiber supplements. Well here, courtesy of the American Heart Association‘s research, is a description of the probable outcome:

Fiber, Lipids, and Coronary Heart Disease
A Statement for Healthcare Professionals

...a fiber supplement containing a mixture of guar gum, pectin, soy fiber, pea fiber, and corn bran lowered LDL cholesterol by 7% to 8% in hypercholesterolemic participants after 15 weeks compared with those taking a placebo. These reductions persisted throughout the 51-week follow-up period with continued use of supplements. Potential risks of excessive use of fiber supplements include reduced mineral absorption and a myriad of gastrointestinal disturbances.[18]

Linda Van Horn, PhD, RD;
From the Nutrition Committee; American Heart Association

“Impressive,” isn‘t it? “Reduced mineral absorption,” meaning more hypertension, more arthritis, more osteoporosis, and a “myriad of gastrointestinal disturbances.” Well, “myriad” is an understatement, a euphemism for gastritis, gastric and duodenal ulcers, enteritis, Crohn‘s disease, irritable bowel syndrome, colitis, diarrhea, bloating, flatulence, and, of course, constipation and its side effects. Besides, according to the same research by the American Heart Association, the fiber-heart disease theory is a fluke anyway. It appears to work on paper, but not in real life:

“The rate of CHD [cardio-vascular disease] mortality was reported to be inversely associated with fiber intake across 20 industrialized nations, but adjustment for fat intake removed the association. Similarly, a 20-year cohort study of 1,001 middle-aged men in Ireland and Boston reported significant inverse association between fiber intake and risk of CHD, but the association diminished when other risk factors were controlled."[19]

(Same as above)

Well, well, well. Since heart disease isn‘t a topic covered in this book, it‘s up to you to decide who‘s the devil‘s advocate, and who‘s not.
Chapter summary

This entire chapter in itself is a summary of the most prominent problems caused by fiber. Hence, the list of key points is brief:

Fiber from plants wasn‘t consumed by humans during most of evolution because until very recently there was no means to process fiber.
Sugars and starches are broken down in the small intestine, but the small intestine can‘t break down fiber because the human body lacks the necessary enzyme.
There are two types of fiber—soluble and insoluble. Soluble fiber causes osmotic diarrhea, because it retains water inside the large intestine. Insoluble fiber absorbs digestive juices and expands four to five times its original size. The expansion of insoluble fiber may cause esophageal, gastric, and intestinal obstruction.
Fiber interferes with gastric (stomach) digestion, and is the leading cause of indigestion, GERD, heartburn, gastritis, and ulcers.
Fiber obstructs the small intestines throughout their entire length, and is the primary cause of intestinal disorders. Because the intestines are responsible for the assimilation of nutrients, fiber-related inflammatory disease causes malnutrition, and an acute deficiency of vitamins and minerals.
Children are particularly vulnerable to fiber, because their digestive organs are smaller than adults.
Fiber is a primary cause of flatulence. These gases are formed during fiber‘s fermentation inside the large intestine.
Fiber increases stool's weight and size, and causes mechanical damage to colorectal organs. Even minor damage leads to constipation. When more fiber is added to combat constipation, more damage is incurred.
Fiber‘s impact on the small and large intestines affects male and female genitourinary organs because of their proximity. Women are particularly vulnerable because female reproductive organs occupy a large space in the abdominal cavity, and because of the specifics of menstruation.
Fiber has no measurable effect on heart disease. If anything, it worsens the outcome because of the excessive carbohydrate consumption that comes with fiber.
Patients who try taking supplemental fiber to reduce cholesterol levels develop a “myriad” of digestive disorders.

https://www.gutsense.org/fiber-mena...auses-harm.html

Last edited by Meme#1 : Wed, Sep-05-18 at 11:03.
Reply With Quote
  #5   ^
Old Wed, Sep-05-18, 12:00
Ms Arielle's Avatar
Ms Arielle Ms Arielle is offline
Senior Member
Posts: 10,323
 
Plan: atkins
Stats: 247/217/153 Female 5'8"
BF:
Progress: 32%
Location: Massachusetts
Default

Respectfully, this is a complicated subject. My bottom line is to get my fiber from real, whole foods. Green beans, brussel sprouts, kidney beans, jiciama, yams, etc. When plants are separated into each of their parts, the issues become complicated.

Historically, we dont eat the hulls of seeds of the grain family. WIth the low carb movement, this once by-product now has a job. The bran-removed to create a more stable starch ( flour) product can be very sharp like glass in its dry state because of the milling process; it does seeem to absorb a lot of water when used in recipes, and I have questions about its bulking, etc. Meaning, if well cooked in plenty of water, I dont see it being a digestion problem.

My thought is that eating a lot of any one food item deserves another look. This is not in the best interest of the GI, overall health, and such. It seems that the high fiber food products are used to replace other better quality ( high nutrition) foods like whole vegetables. In other words, those of us on LC want to have our cake and eat it too, and these fibers allow us to nibble on a sweet without a high impact on our blood sugars.

Otherwise, drinking enough water and exercise also plays a part ; and in horses we use mineral oil to prevent constipation as it is not absorbed and greases the skids. Good for pre surgery.

All very complicated,but comes down to reasonable amounts of bran and hulls as monogastrics are not designed for these fibers in high quantity.
Reply With Quote
  #6   ^
Old Wed, Sep-05-18, 12:22
Meme#1's Avatar
Meme#1 Meme#1 is online now
Posts: 10,345
 
Plan: Atkins DANDR
Stats: 210/188/160 Female 5'4"
BF:
Progress: 44%
Location: Texas
Default

Chapter 12. The Low-Fiber Advantage

Your body is the only “authority” you can trust unconditionally. It lets you feel and evaluate the advantages of a low-fiber diet li~terally “by your gut.” If that’s not enough for you, or if it seems too subjective, consider comparing your past and current blood tests. You should observe a drop in your triglycerides and HbA1c (the av~erage amount of blood sugar over the past six to eight weeks), and most likely, a rise in your HDL (“good”) cholesterol.[1] If you want to investigate things even further, ask your doctor to review your past and present metabolic (kidney- and diabetes-related) and hepatic (liver-related) test results, and you should see them normalizing as well.

Just keep in mind that it takes years, perhaps decades, to develop diet-related health disorders. Hence, it would be nuts to expect that any diet—low-fiber or not—can magically undo all of the damage in a day, a week, or even a year. Still, all things considered, getting better, even slowly, is a far better option than getting nowhere.

So what’s so magical about a low-fiber diet? In a nutshell, two things: (1) it makes the digestive process quick and efficient, and (2) it’s naturally low in carbohydrates. Here’s a brief summation of its most important advantages. First, in terms of your digestion:
The healing properties of a low-fiber diet

The impact of a low-fiber diet on the digestive process is recogniz~able from the relatively rapid reduction of functional (re~versible) side effects caused by excess fiber: the disappearance of heartburn (because there is less indigested food inside the sto~~mach), the absence of bloating (because there is less bacterial fermen~tation), the easy passing of stools (because the stools are smaller), the reduction of hemorrhoids (because there is less strain~ing), and the gradual vanishing of nagging abdominal discomfort (because of all of the above). You can’t miss these signs.

The progress doesn’t end with just the relief of side effects: as the quality of digestion improves, your body begins to absorb more essential nutrients from pretty much the same diet you consumed be~fore, because fiber is no longer there to impede their assimila~tion. The improved availability of nutrients accelerates tissue regen~eration throughout the body, rejuvenates the endocrine sys~tem, and increases the output of digestive enzymes. This, in turn, ac~celerates the healing of the digestive organs, which in turn im~proves digestion, and in turn accelerates the healing... well, you get the picture.

This process of recovery is the direct opposite of the harm fiber causes. The harm starts with fiber’s interference with digestion: as digestion becomes less efficient, so does the body’s ability to resist harm. As the harm increases in scope, digestion becomes even less efficient, and the harm more apparent. This step-by-step decline of health accelerates with aging. Therein lies yet another important ad~vantage of the low-fiber diet:

A Low-Fiber Diet Decelerates
Age-Related Decline

The decline may be slow and imperceptible in the case of young people, and precipitous and apparent in older people, but the as~pects of the decline caused by fiber come to a halt the moment you stop overconsuming it.

I emphasize this point to instill a dose of optimism in you: it doesn’t matter how old you are, nor does it matter how far this or that disorder has progressed. What really matters is that as soon as you take action, you put a stop to the self-inflicted downfall, be~cause you remove one of its most prominent causes. This in itself, even when complete recovery may not be feasible, is worth the ef~fort.

Diseases aside, the impact of fiber’s reduction on satiety is yet an~other important advantage of the low-fiber diet. While appetite makes you want to eat, a lack of satiety causes you to overeat. The mechanisms behind satiety are mainly physiological—you don’t feel satisfied from eating until the stomach is filled to a certain ca~pacity. That’s why stomach-reduction surgeries are so effective for morbidly obese people: after surgery they need just a fraction of food to feel “stuffed.”

But we aren’t actually born with huge, hungry stomachs. They stretch out gradually as we keep filling them with a high-bulk diet. In fact, fiber advocates hawk this phenomenon as an advantage: fi~ber fills you up and promotes satiety, they claim. But that’s a devil’s benefit, as each new “fill-up” keeps stretching your sto~mach a teeny bit more, so that the next time around you need a teeny bit more food to fill it to satiety again. Do this for some years, and eventually you “grow” a stomach that’s indeed hard to please. This is yet another aspect of fiber addiction.

Fortunately, it also works in reverse: as soon as you stop consum~ing a high-fiber diet, your stomach begins to gradually shrink in size, and with each new meal you’ll need less and less food to feel satisfied. All this without a gastric bypass (GBP) or a stomach band (LAP-BAND®) squeezed around it—the two most popular surgi~cal options to reduce the stomach’s capacity and “speed up” sa~tiety.

The advantages of a low-fiber diet don’t stop with just no longer overeating. Here’s a brief recap of its other undeniable benefits:

Oral health. A low-fiber diet improves dental health, because it re~duces bacterial fermentation inside the oral cavity. The by-products of fermentation are the leading cause of dental caries (cavities), gingivitis, perio~dontal disease, and tooth loss.

Esophagus. A low-fiber diet prevents heartburn. In turn, this elimi~nates the causes of esophageal inflammatory disease (esopha~gitis), which may result in the development of dysphagia (difficulties swallowing), Barrett’s disease (irreversible change of the esophageal epithelium), and cancer.

Gastric digestion. Meals without fiber and carbohydrates pro~mote rapid and complete stomach digestion. The improvements are particularly apparent in people over the age of 50 (the group most often affected by indigestion, GERD, gastritis, and peptic ul~cers).

Duodenum. A low-fiber diet prevents duodenitis and duodenal ul~cers. The extended contact of the duodenal epithelium with fi~ber soaked in hydrochloric acid and gastric enzymes is a primary cause of these inflammatory conditions.

Pancreas. A low-fiber diet protects the pancreatic ducts from ob~struction and from ensuing pancreatitis. Acute pancreatitis is a leading cause of type I diabetes symptoms in children, whose small organs can get clogged by fiber quite easily.

Gallbladder. A low-fiber diet prevents cholecystitis, which is the obstruction of the billiary ducts, through which the gallbladder and liver discharge bile into the duodenum. Again, fiber is the only outside substance capable of causing the primary obstruc~tion (the secondary obstruction comes from gallstones and bile salts). Acute cholecystitis is a leading cause of gallbladder dis~ease caused by gallstones, gallbladder inflammation, or both. Each year over half a million Americans undergo a cholecystec~tomy (gallbladder removal surgery). As you might expect, obe~sity and diabetes—both conditions brought about by a high-carb/high-fiber diet—are the leading causes of cholecystitis. And yes, women are twice as likely as men to have gallstones. No sur~prise there: women consume more fiber than men because twice as many women are also affected by constipation.

Intestinal obstruction. Intestinal obstructionisn’t possible with foods that digest completely. The small intestines are supposed to transport liquid chyme only, not large lumps of undigested fiber. Intestinal obstructions on a low-fiber diet are as likely as a rain~bow during a snowstorm.

Hernia. A low-fiber diet prevents herniation of the abdominal wall by the small intestine, or its protrusion inside the scrotum. These two conditions are likely to occur when the intestines ex~pand beyond the capacity of the abdominal cavity to retain them. There is only one food component capable of causing this kind of expansion: indigestible fiber.

Enteritis. A low-fiber diet protects the intestinal epithelium from inflammation caused by mechanical contact, from chemical irrita~tion caused by gastric juices and enzymes (absorbed by fiber while in the stomach), and from obstruc~tions caused by lumps of fiber.

Malnutrition. Enteritis, whether caused by the mechanic~al pro~~~per~~ties of insoluble fiber, chemical properties of soluble fiber, or allergenicity of plant proteins, blocks the digestion of nutri~ents, including essential, health-sustaining amino acids, fatty ac~ids, vitamins, minerals, and microelements. This causes a broad range of degenerative diseases, ranging from pernicious anemia to kwashiorkor, osteomalacia to birth defects, and everything in between. A low-fiber diet, especially one free from wheat (a source of gluten) is essential for the proper assimilation of nutri~ents.

Bloating and flatus. The fermentation of fiber inside the large in~testine produces copious gases, which cause pain and bloating. A fiber-free diet eliminates intestinal bloating and the source of the pain (from pressure).Flatus is particularly bothersome in terms of social interactions for all people, and it’s outright painful for most. A low-fiber diet reduces the presence of gases to the barely perceptible.

Appendicitis. A low-fiber diet is key to preventing appendicitis. The accumulation of fiber inside the cecum obstructs the appen~dix, and causes its inflammation. There is no other dietary factor that can cause appendix obstruction, because under normal circum~stances the cecum’s content is fluid. Children are particu~larly vulnerable because their cecum is tiny, taut, and prone to ob~struction.

Diarrhea. A low-fiber diet prevents diarrhea. Without exception, all kinds of soluble fiber are diarrhea-causing agents. For this reason fiber is widely used in medicinal and home-made laxatives. Intestinal inflammation caused by insoluble fiber blocks the absorption of fluids, and causes diarrhea, too. Combine both irritants, add (as widely recommended) even more fiber to treat diarrhea, and you’re assured of diarrhea becoming chronic, or turning into ulcerative colitis or Crohn's disease.

Constipation. A low-fiber diet eliminates constipation caused by large stools. If you don’t want your children to ever experience constipation, eliminate fiber-rich foods from their diets. Unfortu~nately, a low-fiber diet alone isn’t sufficient to treat constipation after the large intestine has already been irreversibly transformed by large stools. This complicated subject is discussed throughout this book.

Hemorrhoidal disease and anal fissures. A low-fiber diet is key to the prevention and treatment of these two conditions (caused by large, hard stools, and the straining required to expel them) and their numerous side effects.

Irritable bowel syndrome. A low-fiber diet relieves IBS symp~toms as soon as large stools “depart” the bowel. No irritant inside the bowel equals no irritable bowel. It’s as simple as that.

Crohn’s disease. Crohn’s disease is IBS gone too far. A low-fiber diet is key to treating and preventing Crohn’s disease.

Ulcerative colitis. This tragic disease is the final straw—the sum total of all of the above. Naturally, the treatment of ulcerative coli~tis must begin with a zero-fiber diet in order to eliminate its di~arrhea-, constipation-, and inflammation-causing effects.

Cancers of the digestive organs. A low-fiber diet reduces the chances of the digestive system getting struck by cancer, because it eliminates the major dietary cause of digestive disorders. It’s axiomatic that healthy organs are less likely to get affected by ma~lignancies than unhealthy organs. The unfortunate fact that ul~cerative colitis increases the risk of colon cancer 3,200% pro~vides us with all the proof we need about the fiber-cancer connec~tion.

A low-fiber diet alone isn’t a guarantee of vibrant health and boundless longevity. It is, however, an important step toward attain~ing these treasured things. And it’s never too late to make it happen. Besides benefiting your digestive system, a low-fiber diet works wonders for your endocrine system and metabolism.

The metabolic advantages of a low-fiber diet

While the endocrine system governs the metabolism of energy, it’s you who governs the supply of nutrients that provide the en~er~~~gy in the first place. A true breaking down of the metabolism is a rarity: only about 5% of diabetes victims, for example, suffer from a failure of the pancreas to produce insulin. The other 95% over~power the body with so many carbohydrates that their pancreas ei~ther can’t keep up with the demand (for insulin), or their bodies sim~ply ignore the insulin, which is already plentiful.

Thus, true recovery from metabolic disorders like diabetes lies not in taking more drugs to trick the pancreas into producing even more insulin, or taxing the liver into converting excess blood sugar into even more body fat, but in balance. The plain, simple, elemen~tary balance between how much energy you really need and how much you’re actually getting from food.

Most people can’t find that balance, not because they aren’t will~ing, or are foolish, but simply because they’re misinformed about the role of dietary carbohydrates and natural fiber in health and nu~trition. That’s why so many well-meaning and health-conscious indi~viduals prefer getting their fiber from abundant “natural” sources, believing it’s healthier,[2] while in fact it’s as far from the truth as New York is from Paris.

Natural fiber—both the soluble and insoluble kind—is present only in plant-based foods, such as grains, nuts, seeds, legumes, fruits, and vegetables. It’s also found in foods processed from these plants, such as cereals, bread, pasta, and baked goods. Most of these foods contain anywhere from five to twenty times more carbohy~drates than fiber, which is enough to overpower even the most ro~bust endocrine system with excess energy. Thus, when you cut down on the fiber-rich foods in your diet, you’re also cutting out ac~companying carbs, and bringing the energy supply and demand back into balance.
Nutrients Reference Lookup

Find nutrients content:

Fiber

Within the food group:

All food groups

Show order:

Highest to lowest

Go to expanded search

Assuming you won’t be rushing to replace these excluded carbo~hydrates with refined sugar, fruit juices, and soft drinks, your diet will become not just low in fiber, but decidedly low in carbs as well. Thus, serendipitously, you’ll be accruing the benefits of a low-carb diet, too.

While simple carbs (i.e. mono and disaccharides, such as sugar) di~gest rapidly and cause a brief spike in blood sugar, complex carbs (i.e. polysaccharides, such as starches in grains) digest for hours at a time. All along, while digestion is taking place, the pan~creas secretes insulin to keep up with the steady supply of glucose entering the bloodstream.

A chronically elevated level of insulin is called hyperinsulinemia. Besides extremely rare pancreatic tumors and extraordinary stress, there is only one factor that can cause hyperinsulinemia: dietary car~bohydrates. The more carbohydrates you eat, the more insulin your pancreas produces to utilize them.

Elevated insulin is a potent vasoconstrictor, meaning it narrows major and minor blood vessels throughout the body. When this hap~pens, blood pressure and pulse rates go up, while the supply of oxygenated blood delivered to the essential organs and extremities goes down. For these reasons, hyperinsulinemia is a primary cause of elevated blood pressure, heart disease, atherosclerosis, diabetes, liver disease, kidney failure, nerve damage, blindness, peripheral vascular disease, dementia, migraine headaches, chronic fatigue, at~tention deficit/hyperactivity disorder, hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), incessant appetite, and obesity. And that’s just the big ones.

Not so long ago, the sum of most of these symptoms was called Syndrome X. Now it’s called “prediabetes,”[3] because the “X” in the syndrome is no longer a mystery. It stands for hyperinsulinemia, which is obviously caused by too many carbohydrates in one’s diet. Consider an average “healthy” breakfast: a glass of orange juice (26 g of carbs), a cup of Kellogg’s Crispix (25 g) with a cup of milk (12 g), and one medium-sized banana (27 g). That’s 90 g of carbs, or the equivalent of six tablespoons of sugar, which is al~most half the daily requirement for the average adult. While this modest breakfast keeps digesting, the body keeps secreting insulin, almost half the daily dose. And that’s before several snacks, sodas, lunch, and dinner.

Of course, if you don’t consume prodigious amounts of carbs, the pancreas doesn’t flood your body with insulin. So as soon as your consumption of carbs goes down, the state of your health goes up, and you can expect to see the following improvements just from taming the hyperinsulinemia:


Hypoglycemia. When blood sugar drops down below 40–50 milli~grams per deciliter of blood (mg/dl), a person loses conscious~ness (i.e. coma, syncope), and may actually die, often not from the coma episode itself, but from an ensuing accident, such as a fall or car crash. Hypoglycemia occurs when there is more insulin in the system than available glucose to satisfy de~mand by the central nervous system. Its symptoms are hard to miss: fatigue, drowsiness, irritability, hunger, headache, memory loss, vision disturbances, speech impairment, unsteadiness, dizzi~ness, tingling in the hands or lips, dilated pupils, rapid pulse, low blood pressure, and some others. When insulin levels are normal, hypoglycemia isn’t likely even on a zero-carb diet, because the body can maintain a steady level of blood glucose from other sources of energy, such as dietary fats and proteins, or stored en~ergy in the form of glycogen in the liver, fat from adipose tissue, protein from muscle tissue, and so on.

Elevated triglycerides. A high level of triglycerides is considered to be a more objective marker of advancing heart disease than any other factor. As soon as carbohydrates are reduced, the level of triglycerides follows suit, because the liver no longer needs to convert excess blood glucose into triglycerides, which, inciden~tally, becomes body fat. Chronically elevated triglycerides in~crease blood viscosity, which is another major cause of elevated blood pressure.

Hypertension. Your blood pressure will normalize because insu~lin no longer constricts your blood vessels, and no longer forces your heart to pump more blood more vigorously to overcome the resistance of narrow vessels as well as viscous (from triglyc~e~rides) blood.

Heart disease. Your heart condition will improve because your heart muscles will get more well-oxygenated blood, and also be~cause it will not have to pump the blood extra hard to overcome the counteraction of constricted blood vessels and the friction caused by triglycerides.

Atherosclerosis. If you suffer from atherosclerosis, it may gradu~ally reverse itself because insulin no longer contributes to vascu~lar inflammatory disease, which damages the vessels on the in~side and leads to the accumulation of vascular plaque—a primary cause of permanent narrowing of the affected vessels. The rever~sal of atherosclerosis is described in detail in mainstream medical literature.

Migraine headaches. The two most prominent dietary causes be~hind migraine headaches are the constriction of cerebral blood ves~sels by insulin, and cerebral edema caused by excess dietary potassium. Carbohydrate-rich foods are at once the largest source of dietary potassium and the triggers of insulin. In this respect, a low-carb diet is truly the best headache “medicine.” Alcohol, monosodium glutamate (MSG), naturally occurring and added sul~fites in wine, and the amino acid tyramine, found in aged wines, cheeses, and many other foods are also triggers for head~aches, unrelated to insulin or carbohydrates. When these are added on top of too many carbs, a headache can become one gi~ant migraine.

Attention deficit disorder in adults. This condition is caused by im~paired cerebral circulation, low-blood sugar, and general fa~tigue. These three factors depress the central nervous system (CNS), and interfere with normal day-to-day functions and activi~ties.

Attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children. Since both elevated glucose and insulin are potent stimulants of the CNS, children respond to them with alternating patterns of hy~peractivity and fatigue. Both states interfere with concentration and cause behavior patterns that are considered abnormal. Shortly after affected children are placed on a low-carb diet, the symptoms of ADHD gradually diminish and eventually disap~pear. It just takes time for a child’s pancreas to reduce the produc~tion of insulin and adapt to a new pattern of behavior.

Insomnia. A combination of elevated levels of insulin (an energy hormone) and elevated levels of blood sugar (a fuel for CNS) are the primary causes of functional (i.e. reversible) sleeplessness. How can one sleep when the body is so overstimulated with en~ergy? That’s why you’ve been told from childhood not to eat se~~veral hours before bedtime. As people get older, digestion and utili~zation of energy stretches from the customary 4–6 hours to 8, 10, or even 12 hours. So even if you’ve completed your dinner by 7 p.m., it may continue digesting until 3, 5, or even 7 a.m. When you finally doze off, the sleep is superficial, because the level of insulin remains high long after the blood sugar has gone down. Not surprisingly, the quality of sleep goes up as soon as the amount of dietary carbs goes down. As with ADHD, it takes time to tame and adjust the unconditional (not dependent on the diet) release of insulin.

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. A combination of fatigue from low-blood sugar, mental and muscular apathy related to constricted blood vessels (i.e. inadequate supply of blood), and general weari~ness stemming from chronic insomnia are the primary ingre~dients of chronic fatigue syndrome. The reduction of dietary carbohydrates eliminates the causes of low blood sugar, blood-ves~sel constriction, and insomnia, and brings welcomed energy back. If this doesn’t occur, seek out and eliminate other possible causes, such as celiac disease, anemia, dehydration, low thyroid function, chronic infections, autoimmune disorders, depression, and so on. Not surprisingly, a high-carb diet contributes mightily to all these conditions.

Susceptibility to colds. An elevated level of glucose in healthy children stimulates metabolic rates and raises body temperature, which causes profuse perspiration. When children perspire, they’re more likely to get chills from the ensuing rapid evapora~tion—a condition that makes them susceptible to colds. Adults may get colds for similar reasons, except that in their case con~stricted blood vessels lower body temperature, and facilitate bacte~rial infections. In addition, elevated levels of blood glucose provide plentiful feed for fledging bacteria to invade, procreate, and overpower the immune system of children and adults alike. In essence, excess carbs make you a walking Petri dish, ready and willing to shelter, feed, and grow any bacterial pathogen that happens to be around. A reduction of dietary carbohydrates in the diet significantly reduces the chance of bacterial infections.

Acne. Hormonal changes in teenagers has little to do with acne. Puberty happens to coincide with the appearance of fully-func~tional sebaceous glands on one’s face and body. Excess oil ex~creted by these glands clogs them, while the bacteria lodged within them causes the infection and eruption. A zero-carb diet is one of the most effective means of acne control because (a) it curbs oil production by reducing the level of triglycerides in the blood, and (b) it doesn’t stimulate bacterial growth as much be~cause of a reduction in the level of blood sugar.

Seborrhea. Besides “dandruff,” the term seborrhea means “too much oil.” A low-carb diet controls seborrhea for the same rea~sons it “treats” acne: it eliminates excess triglycerides (derived from glucose and fermentation of fiber), which are the leading source of “too much oil.” The dietary fats from plant oils found in dressings and mayonnaise also contribute to seborrhea and acne. A low-fiber diet, along with a moderate consumption of es~sential fats from animal sources, helps control dandruff and acne without resorting to medical treatments.

Yeast infection. Candida albicans, a yeast-like fungus, is com~monly present in the mouth, vagina, and intestinal tract. In healthy people its proliferation is kept well under control by sym~biotic bacteria and other immune co-factors. It’s believed that a de~ficiency of vitamins B12, folate, zinc, and selenium contributes to candidiasis, an abnormal growth of fungus. This growth is fur~ther sustained by an elevated level of blood sugar. Intestinal in~flammation caused by gluten (a wheat protein) and the fermenta~tion of fiber (a source of elevated acidity), are the two primary causes of vitamin and mineral deficiencies even among people who take supplements or eat a “balanced” diet. A reduction of car~bohydrates (especially from the grain group) and the elimina~tion of fiber is an effective preventative from recurring yeast infec~tions, especially when combined with quality supplements.

Liver disease. A condition known as fatty liver, which is caused by the continuous onslaught of carbohydrates, is reversible in peo~ple who adopt a low-carb diet. Its reversal greatly benefits those who have been affected by hepatitis, because a healthy liver has a high degree of resistance to these viruses.[4]

Type II Diabetes. If you have type II diabetes (non-insulin depend~ent), its symptoms should gradually reverse. You may be able to get off side effects-prone medication, because the normali~zation of blood sugar is an almost immediate response to a low-carb diet. Don’t judge your recovery progress just on self-testing, or on fasting plasma glucose tests. Take the HbA1c (glyco~sylated hemoglobin) test instead. Unlike the fasting plasma glucose test, which takes a direct snapshot of widely fluctuating daily levels of glucose, the HbA1c reflects the average concentra~tion of glucose in the blood during the preceding six to eight weeks. It presents a true picture of diabetes, irrespective of external circumstances such as a fast, medication, or recent meal. Wait for at least two months from the day you begin a low-carb diet before taking this test.

Type I Diabetes. If you have type I diabetes (insulin-dependent), you should be able to significantly reduce your doses of insulin to a much safer level. In many cases, you may find that you have been misdiagnosed, that your pancreas is still functional, and that it can manage blood sugar on its own. According to some ex~perts, the rate of misdiagnosis of type I diabetes among children is up to 50%.[5] It isn’t just elevated blood sugar that’s eventually harming these children, but also the large doses of insulin pre~scribed to support their high-carb diets.

Blindness. Your eyes aren’t as likely to succumb to diabetic reti~nopathy, a condition commonly related to diabetes, hypertension, hyperinsulinemia, and elevated triglycerides, and the leading cause of blindness among adults with either type of diabetes, and (even more often) with undiagnosed diabetes.

Impotence. A low-carb diet may boost your libido just as well as Viagra does, because both things dilate and relax the blood ves~sels that govern erections. In addition, unlike Viagra, a low-carb diet will not cause headaches or blindness. If you recall Gra~ham’s and Kellogg’s rational for vegetarian, high-fiber diets, it wasn’t to keep people from screwing up their health, but to keep people away from having sex, even with their lawful spouses.

Nerve damage. Low-carb diets protect you from nerve damage caused by hyperinsulinemia. Diabetes- and prediabetes-related nerve damage is associated with a loss of sensitivity in the ex~tremities. Nerve damage of the anal canal is one of the primary causes of constipation, and dependence on fiber to move the bow~els. Penal and vaginal nerve damage affects intercourse, be~cause the victims aren’t able to reach orgasm. Premature ejacula~tion also results from indirect overstimulation of the nervous re~ceptors by elevated insulin. That same overstimulation eventually causes the receptor’s demise.

Appetite control. Insidious hunger and incessant appetite are very much the symptoms of hyperinsulinemia, both of which are pro~voked by low blood sugar. This narcotic-like effect of insulin is also hard to overcome, because the urge to consume carbohydrates is beyond simple conscious control, but driven by the body’s sur~vival instincts and unconditional responses. For anyone wanting to lose weight, or at the very least wishing to not gain any more, this effort-free curbing of the appetite is one of the most pleasant aspects of a low-carb lifestyle.

Obesity. If you are overweight, you may stop gaining weight, and may begin to gradually lose body fat, because body fat is made al~most exclusively from the carbohydrates in your diet. If you con~sume less than 200 g of carbohydrates daily (an average for the medium-sized adult), the balance is drawn from body fat (the physiology of weight loss). If you consume more than 200 g, you just get fatter, and fatter, and fatter.

Low weight. If you’re underweight, you may begin gaining weight gradually. The combination of your genetics, insulin resis~tance, and hyperinsulinemia is the primary cause of weight loss. Genetics determine the ability of your adipose tissue to store fat. Hyperinsulinemia causes insulin resistance, or the inabil~ity of cells to respond to the insulin signals in order to start absorbing glucose. In turn, this metabolic disorder turns on lipoly~sis (a conversion of body fat into energy), and gluconeogene~sis (a metabolic function that produces glucose from muscle tissues). The simultaneous inability to accumulate fat, and the use of body fat and muscle tissues for energy, causes weight loss and prevents weight gain. The process is similar to the weight loss experienced by people with type I diabetes, ex~cept in their case the elevated insulin comes from the injections.

Kidney disease. If you have kidney disease, you’ll see an im~provement for two reasons: (1) When the level of glucose in the blood exceeds 200 mg/dl, the hyperosmotic pressure forces the kidneys to filter out excess sugar with urine. (2) Hyperinsuline~mia causes increased blood pressure, which destroys delicate kid~ney tissues. The combined onslaught of both forces (hyperosmo~tic pressure and blood pressure) doesn’t give the kidneys a chance to regenerate and recover from the preceding damage.

Nocturnal Polyuria. You’ll no longer get up in the middle of the night to urinate as often, if at all. Children, whose sleep is so much deeper than that of adults, aren’t as likely to have embar~rassing episodes, either. Bedwetting and nighttime urination oc~cur because of two factors: (1) elevated levels of glucose cause hy~perosmotic pressure and a correspondingly high urine output; and (2) a frequent urge is caused by inflammatory bladder dis~ease, resulting from elevated levels of acidity and glucose in the urine. Both conditions contribute to bacterial infection of the blad~der and ensuing inflammation.

Cancer. As you recall from Chapter 10, Colon Cancer, researchers determined a direct connection between the intake of dietary car~bohydrates and cancer. All malignancies begin with just one cell. The likelihood of this cell taking hold and growing into a full-blown tumor increase substantially when the immune system is suppressed by dysbacteriosis, by carbohydrate-related disorders, and when blood circulation is impeded by hyperinsulinemia. It’s also a well-known fact that blood sugar (glucose) is a primary metabolic fuel for cancerous cells: the more glucose in the sys~tem, the faster the proliferation of primary cancer and secondary metastases. When the onslaught of carbs is reversed, the green~house conditions for cancers are also reversed, however indi~rectly.

Should I go any further? Even this long list is far from comprehen~sive. You may read a good deal more about the benefits of low-carb diets from numerous diet books. Luckily, a low-carb diet happens to be a low-fiber diet as well. Finders keepers!

Summary

Human digestive organs can accommodate a limited amount of un~digested fiber, but aren’t intended for its unlimited consump~tion across the span of many years.

When the digestive organs are exposed to large volumes of indi~gestible fiber, they experience numerous disorders from chemi~cal, mechanical, and fermentative damage.

A low-fiber diet is the least taxing diet for the digestive organs, be~cause it doesn’t impede gastric digestion, doesn’t affect the transport of digested food, doesn’t interfere with the assimilation of nutrients, and doesn’t obstruct the elimination of biological waste.

A low-fiber diet is effective for the prevention and treatment of most digestive disorders, because it enables the natural healing and recovery of the digestive organs.

A zero-fiber (i.e. low-density) diet is prescribed to all patients be~fore and after any surgical procedure related to the digestive or~gans, in order to prevent harm and to speed up recovery. Simi~larly, a low-fiber diet protects healthy digestive organs from harm and illness.

A high-fiber diet happens to be a very high-carbohydrate diet, be~cause most natural foods contain ten to twenty times more carbo~hydrates (by weight) for every unit of fiber. The extended overcon~sumption of carbohydrates causes metabolic disorders such as hyperinsulinemia, hyperglycemia, hypoglycemia, diabe~tes, and others.

A chronically elevated level of insulin causes extended constric~tion of the blood vessels. Constricted blood vessels resist blood flow, and cause elevated blood pressure. Elevated blood pressure is associated with heart disease, atherosclerosis, and stroke.
The adoption of a low-fiber diet coincides with a significantly re~duced consumption of dietary carbohydrates (low-carb diet). Low-carb diets are an effective preventative for cardiovascular and endocrine disorders, including diabetes and obesity.

Effective and lasting weight loss is one of the most desirable as~pects of a low-fiber diet. When fiber is removed from the diet, weight loss is aided by a general reduction of appetite and faster satiety—two factors crucial for permanent weight loss.

The advantages of a low-fiber diet come from the combined ef~fects of better digestion and improved endocrine functions, which impact health, well-being, and longevity.

Quality of life and the preservation of health should be key consid~erations for anyone considering a low-fiber diet while they’re still relatively healthy. The reversal and prevention of dis~ease should be a key concern for people who are already experi~encing digestive and metabolic disorders.

Footnotes

1
The level of LDL (“bad”) cholesterol is determined primarily by age and genetics. Normally, it goes up as people get older, and has no direct bearing on your diet, because LDL cholesterol (as measured) is produced exclusively by the liver regardless of your diet’s fat and cholesterol content. Actually, a falling level of cholesterol, including LDL, indicates liver disease, and is in fact one of the first symptoms of impending liver failure and death. According to The Merck Manual of Diagnosis and Therapy (2:15. Hyperlipidemia), the ave~rage (that means 95th percentile) level of cholesterol (LDL+HDL) for healthy people “ranges from 210 mg/dL (5.44 mmol/L) in Americans < 20 yr old to > 280 mg/dL (> 7.25 mmol/L) in those > 60 yr old.” [link]

2
Paradoxically, if your goal is to add bulk to your diet, you are better off taking a supplemental fiber, than consuming a high-fiber natural diet, because supplements don’t add any digestible carbohydrates to an already bad mix.

3
“Prediabetes” is a recently concocted term that describes people who have most or all of the symptoms of type II diabetes, except that their blood test is still below the threshold for diabetes. Please note that diabetes itself is a “syndrome,” which means a group of symptoms that make up a disorder. Because most physicians still rely on highly unreliable “fasting plasma glucose” blood tests, a great deal of people with diabetes aren’t diagnosed at all, are diagnosed with the incorrect type (i.e. type I or II), or are wrongly diagnosed (don’t have any diabetes).

4
I am acquainted with someone who experienced a remission of hepatitis C infection (determined by the absence of antibodies) after following a near zero-carb diet for about five years. He adopted that diet after reading my Russian-language books, because he was affected by type II diabetes, which is now also in complete remission. By current yardsticks, a recovery from hepatitis C is considered a miracle. I’m not surprised, however: just as antibodies from most vaccines eventually wear off, apparently hepatitis C antibodies can also vanish. You just have to create a proper environment for healing. Apparently, a zero-carb diet did it for this man. Keep in mind that just one case like this, even well documented, is still considered anecdotal and unrepresentative, and is in no way indicative of what may transpire in any other case.

5
U.S. Center for Disease Control, Special Focus: Diabetes; [link]; page 11.

Fiber Menace

Buy on Amazon

Readability

Table of Contents

Introduction: Thou Shalt Not Eat Any Abominable Thing

Part I. Fiber Madness or Madness From Fiber?

Chapter 1. Fiber Carnage

Chapter 2. Water Damage

Chapter 3. Atkins Goes to South Beach

Part II. The Fiber Menace Gets Real

Chapter 4. Dysbacteriosis

Chapter 5. Constipation

Chapter 6. Hemorrhoidal Disease

Chapter 7. Diverticular Disease

Chapter 8. Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Chapter 9. Ulcerative Colitis and Crohn’s Disease

Chapter 10. Colon Cancer

Part III. Live to Eat, or Eat to Live? Both!

Chapter 11. Avoiding the Perils of Transition

Chapter 12. The Low-Fiber Advantage

Conclusion: In Health We Trust!

Chapter Sections

The healing properties of a
low-fiber diet

The metabolic advantages of a
low-fiber diet

Summary

Footnotes

Nutrients Reference Lookup

Nutrients content:

Fiber

Food group:

All food groups

Show order:

Highest to lowest

Go to expanded search

Site search

Follow us
Facebook

Last edited by Meme#1 : Wed, Sep-05-18 at 13:17.
Reply With Quote
  #7   ^
Old Mon, Oct-22-18, 10:52
teaser's Avatar
teaser teaser is online now
Senior Member
Posts: 13,449
 
Plan: mostly milkfat
Stats: 190/152.4/154 Male 67inches
BF:
Progress: 104%
Location: Ontario
Default

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releas...81019120721.htm

Quote:
Adding refined fiber to processed food could have negative health effects, study finds

Adding highly refined fiber to processed foods could have negative effects on human health, such as promoting liver cancer, according to a new study by researchers at Georgia State University and the University of Toledo.

Accumulating evidence demonstrates consumption of whole foods naturally rich in fiber confers an array of health benefits. This, combined with an appreciation by many health-conscious consumers that their diets are lacking in such fibers, has led to the food industry enriching foods with highly refined soluble fibers, such as inulin. Recently, changes in U.S. Food and Drug Administration rules allow foods containing supplemented fibers to be marketed as health-promoting. This study raises serious concerns about the safety of adding refined fiber to processed foods.

The researchers set out to test the idea that a diet enriched with refined inulin might help combat obesity-associated complications in mice. While such an inulin-containing diet did stave off obesity, some of the mice started to develop jaundice. After six months, many of these mice developed liver cancer.

"Such a finding was really surprising," said Dr. Matam Vijay-Kumar of the University of Toledo and senior author of the study, "but at the same time we recognized their potential importance and accepted the challenge of exploring how processed dietary soluble fiber was inducing liver cancer."

Although this study was performed in mice, it has potential implications for human health, particularly cautioning against enriching processed foods with highly refined, fermentable fiber.

"These findings indicate that enriching foods with purified fibers may not recapitulate the benefits of eating fruits and vegetables naturally rich in soluble fiber," said Dr. Andrew Gewirtz, professor in the Institute for Biomedical Sciences at Georgia State and one of the study's authors. "Moreover, it may result in serious, life-threatening liver cancer in some individuals. Hence, we think the recent FDA rule change that has effectively encouraged marketing of fiber-fortified food as health-promoting is ill-conceived and should be reconsidered."

These findings were published in the Oct. 18 issue of Cell.

"The inulin used in this study is coming from chicory root, not a food we would normally eat. In addition, during the extraction and processing of the fiber, it goes through a chemical process," said Vishal Singh, a postdoctoral fellow from The University of Toledo and one of the lead researchers in the study.

Mice that developed liver cancer in this study had preexisting dysbiosis, meaning an altered intestinal microbiota composition, which was found to play a central role in the promotion of liver cancer.

These findings highlight the need for more studies looking at the effects of purified diet consumption in humans, and especially on liver health.

"We importantly demonstrated that soluble fiber, while it generally beneficially impacts health, can also become detrimental, leading to diseases as severe as liver cancer," said Dr. Benoit Chassaing, assistant professor in the Neuroscience Institute at Georgia State. "However, we do not want to promote that fiber is bad. Rather, our research highlights that fortifying processed foods with fiber may not be safe to certain individuals with gut bacterial dysbiosis, in whom consumption of purified fiber may lead to liver cancer."


Have to look through some of the older soluble fiber versus metabolic diseases in mice studies and see how long they were. It's possible there's some interaction of the specific diet in this study and the inulin.

I've seen suggestions that soluble fiber given to somebody who already has a crummy gut bug profile could just make things worse, but I'm not sure I've seen the idea tested before this, I sort of thought it was a lot of armchair philosophizing.
Reply With Quote
  #8   ^
Old Mon, Oct-22-18, 12:55
Ms Arielle's Avatar
Ms Arielle Ms Arielle is offline
Senior Member
Posts: 10,323
 
Plan: atkins
Stats: 247/217/153 Female 5'8"
BF:
Progress: 32%
Location: Massachusetts
Default

In ruminants especially, feed changes are made very slowly because the microbiome of the rumen and gut is everything.

Every university keeps a fistulated cow.

You might search the animal science journals that publish research.
Reply With Quote
  #9   ^
Old Mon, Oct-22-18, 17:59
dcc0455 dcc0455 is offline
Senior Member
Posts: 166
 
Plan: Low Carb
Stats: 230/165/160 Male 67
BF:
Progress: 93%
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ms Arielle
Every university keeps a fistulated cow.


I had to google the definition of fistulated. Wow. I wonder if they do that with other animals?
Reply With Quote
  #10   ^
Old Wed, Oct-24-18, 14:35
Meme#1's Avatar
Meme#1 Meme#1 is online now
Posts: 10,345
 
Plan: Atkins DANDR
Stats: 210/188/160 Female 5'4"
BF:
Progress: 44%
Location: Texas
Default

I'm doing so much better making sure not to eat high fiber. I still have veggies but I am more cognoscente of where the high fibrous parts of the veggies are and cut them off or don't eat that veggie in the first place.
Reply With Quote
  #11   ^
Old Wed, Oct-24-18, 15:45
Ms Arielle's Avatar
Ms Arielle Ms Arielle is offline
Senior Member
Posts: 10,323
 
Plan: atkins
Stats: 247/217/153 Female 5'8"
BF:
Progress: 32%
Location: Massachusetts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by dcc0455
I had to google the definition of fistulated. Wow. I wonder if they do that with other animals?

No point . Dairy cattle and beef cattle are No 1 in this country. And 99o/o of studies apply to goats and sheep.
Reply With Quote
  #12   ^
Old Wed, Oct-24-18, 15:47
Ms Arielle's Avatar
Ms Arielle Ms Arielle is offline
Senior Member
Posts: 10,323
 
Plan: atkins
Stats: 247/217/153 Female 5'8"
BF:
Progress: 32%
Location: Massachusetts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Meme#1
I'm doing so much better making sure not to eat high fiber. I still have veggies but I am more cognoscente of where the high fibrous parts of the veggies are and cut them off or don't eat that veggie in the first place.

What do u do for microbes? Probiotics or probiotics?
Reply With Quote
  #13   ^
Old Wed, Oct-24-18, 17:02
Meme#1's Avatar
Meme#1 Meme#1 is online now
Posts: 10,345
 
Plan: Atkins DANDR
Stats: 210/188/160 Female 5'4"
BF:
Progress: 44%
Location: Texas
Default

I have plenty of microbes. Everything is functioning like clockwork.
Reply With Quote
  #14   ^
Old Wed, Oct-24-18, 17:06
Ms Arielle's Avatar
Ms Arielle Ms Arielle is offline
Senior Member
Posts: 10,323
 
Plan: atkins
Stats: 247/217/153 Female 5'8"
BF:
Progress: 32%
Location: Massachusetts
Default

Do u replenish them?
Reply With Quote
  #15   ^
Old Wed, Oct-24-18, 17:43
Meme#1's Avatar
Meme#1 Meme#1 is online now
Posts: 10,345
 
Plan: Atkins DANDR
Stats: 210/188/160 Female 5'4"
BF:
Progress: 44%
Location: Texas
Default

Why are you loosing yours?
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 19:05.


Copyright © 2000-2019 Active Low-Carber Forums @ forum.lowcarber.org
Powered by: vBulletin, Copyright ©2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.