Send to

Choose Destination
Eur J Clin Nutr. 1991 Dec;45(12):601-9.

The value of prescribed 'high-fibre' diets for the treatment of the irritable bowel syndrome.

Author information

School of Nutritional Science, Robert Gordon's Institute of Technology, Aberdeen, U.K.


The symptoms of 72 patients with irritable bowel syndrome were assessed by questionnaire before and 6 months after a high-fibre diet had been prescribed, to find whether those who achieved the highest fibre intake did any better than those with smaller intakes. Dietary fibre intakes were measured after 6 months by a 7-day weighed food inventory. There was a significant inverse association between the presence of symptoms and fibre intake for: incomplete defaecation, urgency and hard stools with total fibre intake; urgency and hard stools with cereal fibre intake; and borborygmi with fibre intake at breakfast. All patients with constipation, mucus, urgency or watery stools at the beginning of the study, and who were consuming more than 30 g fibre by the end, reported an improvement in these symptoms. Increasing intakes of fibre were not related in any way to abdominal distension, diarrhoea, flatulence or patient's feelings about the working of their bowels. Therefore, this study suggests that the symptoms which benefit most from the prescription of a high-fibre diet are hard stools, constipation and urgency.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Loading ...
Support Center