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Vegetarian diet helps protect against common bowel disease
About the author: 

A vegetarian diet can help prevent diverticular disease, one of the West's most common bowel disorders

A vegetarian diet can help prevent diverticular disease, one of the West's most common bowel disorders.
Vegetarians are around a third less likely to develop the problem than are their meat-eating counterparts, a new study has discovered.
Diverticular disease has been described as a problem of Western civilization because of its high preponderance among people living in Europe and the US.
It is thought to be caused by a lack of dietary fibre, and this has been borne out in new research carried out by Oxford University. In a study group of 47,033 generally healthy individuals, the researchers profiled the health of 15,459 vegetarians, and discovered that a vegetarian, high fibre diet resulted in a 30 per cent reduction in the risk of developing the problem.
Participants who ate around 25g of fibre a day - from, among other things, fruits, vegetables, oats and rye - were far less likely to develop diverticular disease than would someone who ate just 14g of fibre daily.
The recommended daily allowance (RDA) is 18g of fibre - which may still be too low to prevent the problem.
(Source: British Medical Journal, 2011; 343: d4131).


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