With this name “FIBRE” the very first question that comes to our mind is WHAT IS FIBRE? , so lets know about it.


The American Association of Cereal Chemists (AACC) along with the Carbohydrate Technical Committee of the North American branch of International Life Sciences Institute developed the definition as:

“ Dietary fibre is the edible part of plant or analogous carbohydrates that are resistant to digestion and absorption in small intestine with complete or partial fermentation in large intestine. It includes polysaccharides, oligosaccharides, lignin and associated plant substances. It promotes beneficial physiological effects including laxation and/or blood cholesterol and/or glucose attenuation.”

It is found as water soluble and water insoluble form.


Water soluble form of fibres are gums, pectins, mucilages.
• Helps in increasing viscosity of foods
• Gives a satiety value
• Reduces serum triglycerides and serum cholesterol
• Reduces post-prandial plasma glucose
• Increases tissue insulin sensitivity and insulin receptors
Sources of water soluble fibres are oats, legumes, guar, barley, prunes, figs, citrus fruits, isabgol, etc.


Water insoluble form of fibre is cellulose.
• Form bulk of the stools
• Help in regulation of bowel movements
• Gives satiety value
Sources of insoluble fibre are whole wheat flour, bran, vegetables, fruits, edible seeds such as


**The majority of epidemiological studies support an inverse relationship between
consumption of vegetables and fruits and colorectal cancer risk. Fruits ,vegetables and grains,
in addition to fibre, also contain a variety of anti-carcinogenic compounds which may
contribute to the protective effect. The fibre either binds with the potential carcinogens or dilutes them.
**Studies in which diets were modified to reduce fat and increase carbohydrate and fibre level
have shown favorable impact on the incidence and regression of Cardio Vascular Disease.
Viscous fibre that occur naturally in foods, reduce total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol concentrations.
**Ingestion of a high fibre food induces a feeling of satiety, reduces meal size and food intake.
The formation of viscous gel slows the rate of gastric emptying and creates a feeling of post-prandial satiety.
**The inclusion of viscous polysaccharides reduces the post prandial glucose level concentration thereby proving beneficial in controlling hyperglycemia.
**Dietary fibre especially fermentable fibres, play an important role in maintaining the
integrity of gut
. Short Chain Fatty Acids (SCFAs) generated during fermentation stimulate the
proliferation of mucosal cells in the gut and thus maintain its integrity.
**Fibre rich diets assist in weightloss too by delaying gastric emptying time and hence reducing the food intake.
Total dietary fibre intake should be 25 to 30grams a day preferably from food not supplements.

DeepanshiMalhotra, is a Delhi based dietician, clinical nutritionist and a certified diabetes educator.

She holds a Bachelors of Science in Life Sciences & Masters of Science in Dietetics from Delhi University. She also holds certification in Food & Nutrition and Diploma in Nutrition, Dietician and Health Management. She is also a Certified Diabetes Educator from Dr. V Mohan’s Diabetes Education Academy.

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