Chronic constipation is a common and heterogeneous disorder1. Not only has constipation had a clinically significant deleterious effect on health-related quality of life, it represents an economic burden on the patient and healthcare provider as it results in a significant number of visits to physicians. For example, in the US, constipation accounts for 2.5 million physician visits per year1, and as much as 10% of the clinical workload2 and 14% of medication budgets in the UK3.
Often, lifestyle changes and advice such as increasing fibre content in the diet may reduce these symptoms.
Wheat bran is the most effective fibre to reverse the consequences of poor fibre intakes by reducing intestinal transit time, reducing symptoms of digestive discomfort associated with irregularity, and improving psychological and physiological wellbeing and quality of life4. Wheat bran has a high concentration of cellulose and hemi-celluloses. In fact, wheat bran contains 43g fibre/100g, while rice bran contains 21g fibre/100g and oat bran 15g fibre/100g5. The diagram below illustrates the ability of different fibre types to promote regularity6 and achieve digestive comfort as a result.
A wider European review of the physiological effects of wheat bran and its potential role in preventing non-communicable disease such as colon and breast cancer, cardiovascular disease, obesity and gastrointestinal disease has recently been published. This further reinforces the role of dietary fibre, and particularly wheat bran in a healthy, balanced diet and the need for professionals across the globe to encourage increased intakes of this important nutrient7.
Click here to download a factsheet on wheat bran, which is the most effective fibre for digestive health.