Washington: Adolescents who don`t eat enough fiber tend to have bigger bellies and higher levels of inflammatory factors in their blood, both of which are major risk factors for cardiovascular disease and diabetes, a new study has revealed.The study of 559 adolescents age 14-18 from Augusta, Ga., showed they consumed on average about one-third of the daily recommended amount of fiber, said Norman Pollock, bone biologist at the Medical College of Georgia and the Institute of Public and Preventive Health at Georgia Health Sciences University.“The simple message is adolescents need to eat more fruits, vegetables and whole grains,” Pollock, one co-author of the study, said.“We need to push recommendations to increase fiber intake,” he said.Only about 1 percent of the young participants consumed the recommended daily intake of 28 grams for females and 38 grams for males. The study appears the first to correlate dietary fiber intake with inflammatory markers in adolescents.Better understanding the relationships and risks of diet, inactivity and obesity in children and adolescents is particularly critical at a time when about 1 in 3 is overweight or obese, Samip Parikh, another co-author of the study, said.That`s nearly triple the rate since 1963, according to the American Heart Association.Low-fiber consumers in the study were more likely to have more of the visceral fat found in and around major organs in their abdominal cavity.They also tended to have higher levels of inflammatory factors, such as immune cells called cytokines, as well as lower levels of protective adiponection, a protein secreted by fat that helps the body use glucose and fight inflammation. Interestingly, adiponectin levels tend to drop when fat becomes excessive and obesity is generally considered a chronic inflammatory state.
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