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Soluble Fiber Beta-Fructans May Help With Bowel Movements

Beta-fructan is a type of soluble dietary fiber found in fruits and vegetables. A recent study suggests that supplementation with beta-fructans may help with digestion, stool frequency, and stool consistency.


For this study, researchers examined data in 47 peer-reviewed studies and two unpublished studies that focused on people who were age 33 or older. The majority of the studies were conducted on healthy people, but some were conducted on constipated people, as well as some with IBS, IBD, or Crohn’s disease.


The researchers found that increase in bowel movement frequency was associated more with short-chain beta-fructans than with long-chain-beta-fructans. All beta-fructans were associated with a positive impact on stool consistency. A minimal increase in stool wet weight was also statistically demonstrated with short-chain beta-fructans.


Researchers from De Vries Nutrition Solutions Inc. in the Netherlands led the study. It was published on January 4, 2019, in Nutrients.


If you want to increase your soluble fiber intake, a breakfast of oatmeal, apples, berries, and nuts is packed with fiber. Lunch or dinner that includes cucumbers, carrots, celery, lentils, beans, or flaxseed can help round out a fiber-rich day. The recommended daily intake of total fiber (soluble and insoluble) is 25 grams per day, which equates to at least 5 servings of fruits and vegetables daily as well as 6 servings of grain products.


If none of those foods appeal to you, there are also supplements which can provide all of your daily fiber intake needs.

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