Turns out fibre’s good for so much more than the health of your bowels. A new study, led by Dr. Bamini Gopinath, revealed how eating lots of fibre can lead to a long and healthy life. Dr. Gopinath studied over 1,600 adults, all of whom were aged fifty or above and, after a ten year follow up, determined that those who ate the most fibre had a much higher chance of living a healthier, longer life. In fact, those who were fibre-junkies had an 80 per cent chance of a longer and healthier life than those who didn’t have a lot of fibre.
The study was led with the intention of finding out how carbohydrates in nutrition could affect the aging process — and yes, fibre is a carbohydrate. And of all the different carbohydrates examined (like fibre and sugar), fibre played the biggest role in a person’s “successful aging.”
The researchers defined a “successful aging adult” as someone without any form of disability, depression, brain health impairment, breathing issues or chronic diseases, for the purpose of the study. So, with the help of everyone’s favourite, stool-softening friend, fibre, Dr, Gopinath said that people are “less likely to suffer from hypertension, diabetes, dementia, depression and functional disability.”
Dr. Gopinath does, however, explain that the group that participated in the study were all older adults who didn’t drink a lot of carbonated and sugary drinks, which could have affected the results. So hold the pop and pass the fibre.
No matter what your gender or age is (because fibre knows that ageism and sexism aren’t cool), you could probably use more fibre in your diet. And if you have been inspired to start an all-fibre diet, or at least, a diet with the recommended amounts of fibre, you can find some in fruit, veggies and whole grains.