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Concept: Dietary fiber


Vegetables are important sources of dietary fiber, vitamins and minerals in the diets of children. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) National School Lunch Program has new requirements for weekly servings of vegetable subgroups as well as beans and peas. This study estimated the cost impact of meeting the USDA requirements using 2008 national prices for 98 vegetables, fresh, frozen, and canned. Food costs were calculated per 100 grams, per 100 calories, and per edible cup. Rank 6 score, a nutrient density measure was based on six nutrients: dietary fiber; potassium; magnesium; and vitamins A, C, and K. Individual nutrient costs were measured as the monetary cost of 10% daily value of each nutrient per cup equivalent. ANOVAs with post hoc tests showed that beans and starchy vegetables, including white potatoes, were cheaper per 100 calories than were dark-green and deep-yellow vegetables. Fresh, frozen, and canned vegetables had similar nutrient profiles and provided comparable nutritional value. However, less than half (n = 46) of the 98 vegetables listed by the USDA were were consumed >5 times by children and adolescents in the 2003-4 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey database. For the more frequently consumed vegetables, potatoes and beans were the lowest-cost sources of potassium and fiber. These new metrics of affordable nutrition can help food service and health professionals identify those vegetable subgroups in the school lunch that provide the best nutritional value per penny.

Concepts: National School Lunch Act, Vitamin, Essential nutrient, Nutrient, Vegetable, Potato, Dietary fiber, Nutrition


fifteen percent of patients with Crohn’s disease (CD) are elderly; they are less likely to have complications and more likely to have colonic disease.

Concepts: Medical terms, Colitis, Dietary fiber, Diarrhea, Death, Ulcerative colitis, Crohn's disease, Colon


BACKGROUND: Haemorrhoids (piles) are a very common condition seen in surgical clinics. After exclusion of more sinister causes of haemorrhoidal symptoms (rectal bleeding, perianal irritation and prolapse), the best option for treatment, depends upon persistence and severity of the symptoms. Minor symptoms often respond to conservative treatment such as dietary fibre and reassurance. For more severe symptoms treatment such as rubber band ligation may be therapeutic and is a very commonly performed procedure in the surgical outpatient setting. Surgery is usually reserved for those who have more severe symptoms, as well as those who do not respond to non-operative therapy; surgical techniques include haemorrhoidectomy and haemorrhoidopexy. More recently, haemorrhoidal artery ligation has been introduced as a minimally invasive, non destructive surgical option. There are substantial data in the literature concerning efficacy and safety of ‘rubber band ligation including multiple comparisons with other interventions, though there are no studies comparing it to haemorrhoidal artery ligation. A recent overview has been carried out by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence which concludes that current evidence shows haemorrhoidal artery ligation to be a safe alternative to haemorrhoidectomy and haemorrhoidopexy though it also highlights the lack of good quality data as evidence for the advantages of the technique. Methods/design The aim of this study is to establish the clinical effectiveness and cost effectiveness of haemorrhoidal artery ligation compared with conventional rubber band ligation in the treatment of people with symptomatic second or third degree (Grade II or Grade III) haemorrhoids. DESIGN: A multi-centre, parallel group randomised controlled trial. Outcomes: The primary outcome is patient-reported symptom recurrence twelve months following the intervention. Secondary outcome measures relate to symptoms, complications, health resource use, health related quality of life and cost effectiveness following the intervention. Participants: 350 patients with grade II or grade III haemorrhoids will be recruited in surgical departments in up to 14 NHS hospitals. Randomisation: A multi-centre, parallel group randomised controlled trial. Block randomisation by centre will be used, with 175 participants randomised to each group. DISCUSSION: The results of the research will help inform future practice for the treatment of grade II and III haemorrhoids. Trial Registration ISRCTN41394716.

Concepts: Perianal hematoma, Efficacy, Prolapse, Clinical trial, Dietary fiber, Rubber band ligation, Randomized controlled trial, Hemorrhoid


Lentil (Lens culinaris) is one of the cool season grain legume crops and an important source of dietary proteins and fibre. Fungal diseases are main constraints to lentil production and account for significant yield and quality losses. Lentil has a narrow genetic base presumably due to a bottleneck during domestication and as a result, any resistance to fungal diseases in the cultivated genepool is gradually eroded and overcome by pathogens. New sources of resistance have been identified in wild lentil (Lens ervoides). This article provides an overview of harnessing resistance potential of wild germplasm to enhance genetic resistance in lentil cultivars using next-generation sequencing-based genotyping, comparative genomics and marker-assisted selection breeding.

Concepts: Dietary fiber, Gene, Genomics, Fabaceae, Lens, Pulse, Genetics, Lentil


There is now compelling evidence for a link between enteric microbiota and brain function. The ingestion of probiotics modulates the processing of information that is strongly linked to anxiety and depression, and influences the neuroendocrine stress response. We have recently demonstrated that prebiotics (soluble fibres that augment the growth of indigenous microbiota) have significant neurobiological effects in rats, but their action in humans has not been reported.

Concepts: Emotion, Hypothalamus, Prebiotic, Dietary fiber, Probiotic, Digestive system, Psychology, Anxiety


Previous data demonstrate grain foods contribute shortfall nutrients to the diet of U.S. adults. The 2015⁻2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans have identified several shortfall nutrients in the U.S. population, including fiber, folate, and iron (women only). Intake of some shortfall nutrients can be even lower in older adults. The present analyses determined the contribution of grain foods for energy and nutrients in older U.S. adults and ranked to all other food sources in the American diet. Analyses of grain food sources were conducted using a 24-hour recall in adults (≥51 years old; n = 4522) using data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 2011⁻2014. All grains provided 278 kcal/day or 14% of all energy in the total diet, ranking as the 4th largest contributor of energy compared to 15 main food groups. All grain foods ranked 1st for thiamin (33%) and niacin (23%) intake relative to 15 main food groups. The grain foods category ranked 2nd highest of 15 main food groups for daily dietary fiber (23%), iron (38%), folate (40%), and magnesium (15%) and was the 3rd largest food group contributor for daily calcium intake (13%). When considering nutrients to limit as outlined by dietary guidance, main group of grains contributed 6% total fat, 5% saturated fat, 14% sodium and 9% added sugar. Breads, rolls and tortillas provided 150 kcal/day or 8% of all energy in the total diet, ranking as the 2nd largest contributor of energy compared to 46 food subcategories. Breads, rolls and tortillas ranked 1st of 46 foods for daily thiamin (16%) and niacin (10%) intake and 2nd for dietary fiber (12%), iron (12%), folate (13%), and magnesium (7%). Breads, rolls and tortillas ranked 3rd largest food group contributor for daily calcium (5%) intake. Ready-to-eat cereals provided 47 kcal/day or 2% of all energy in the total diet, ranking as the 20th largest contributor of energy compared to 46 food subcategories. All ready-to-eat cereals ranked 1st for daily iron (19%), 1st for folate (21%), 5th for dietary fiber (7%), 3rd for niacin (9%), 8th for magnesium (4%), and 13th for calcium (2%) intake. Given all grain foods and specific subcategories of grain foods provided a greater percentage of several underconsumed nutrients than calories (including dietary fiber, iron, and folate), grain foods provide nutrient density in the American diet of the older adult.

Concepts: Nutrient, Dietary fiber, Fat, Carbohydrate, Food, Vitamin, Maize, Nutrition


The health benefits of dietary fiber have long been appreciated. Higher intakes of dietary fiber are linked to less cardiovascular disease and fiber plays a role in gut health, with many effective laxatives actually isolated fiber sources. Higher intakes of fiber are linked to lower body weights. Only polysaccharides were included in dietary fiber originally, but more recent definitions have included oligosaccharides as dietary fiber, not based on their chemical measurement as dietary fiber by the accepted total dietary fiber (TDF) method, but on their physiological effects. Inulin, fructo-oligosaccharides, and other oligosaccharides are included as fiber in food labels in the US. Additionally, oligosaccharides are the best known “prebiotics”, “a selectively fermented ingredient that allows specific changes, both in the composition and/or activity in the gastrointestinal microflora that confers benefits upon host well-bring and health.” To date, all known and suspected prebiotics are carbohydrate compounds, primarily oligosaccharides, known to resist digestion in the human small intestine and reach the colon where they are fermented by the gut microflora. Studies have provided evidence that inulin and oligofructose (OF), lactulose, and resistant starch (RS) meet all aspects of the definition, including the stimulation of Bifidobacterium, a beneficial bacterial genus. Other isolated carbohydrates and carbohydrate-containing foods, including galactooligosaccharides (GOS), transgalactooligosaccharides (TOS), polydextrose, wheat dextrin, acacia gum, psyllium, banana, whole grain wheat, and whole grain corn also have prebiotic effects.

Concepts: Gut flora, Fructooligosaccharide, Whole grain, Carbohydrate, Nutrition, Prebiotic, Starch, Dietary fiber


Historically, fruit juice was recommended by pediatricians as a source of vitamin C and as an extra source of water for healthy infants and young children as their diets expanded to include solid foods with higher renal solute load. It was also sometimes recommended for children with constipation. Fruit juice is marketed as a healthy, natural source of vitamins and, in some instances, calcium. Because juice tastes good, children readily accept it. Although juice consumption has some benefits, it also has potential detrimental effects. High sugar content in juice contributes to increased calorie consumption and the risk of dental caries. In addition, the lack of protein and fiber in juice can predispose to inappropriate weight gain (too much or too little). Pediatricians need to be knowledgeable about juice to inform parents and patients on its appropriate uses.

Concepts: Sugar, Vitamin D, Dietary fiber, Vitamin, Vitamin C, Dental caries, Glucose, Nutrition


Obesity is a risk factor for osteoarthritis (OA), the greatest cause of disability in the US. The impact of obesity on OA is driven by systemic inflammation, and increased systemic inflammation is now understood to be caused by gut microbiome dysbiosis. Oligofructose, a nondigestible prebiotic fiber, can restore a lean gut microbial community profile in the context of obesity, suggesting a potentially novel approach to treat the OA of obesity. Here, we report that - compared with the lean murine gut - obesity is associated with loss of beneficial Bifidobacteria, while key proinflammatory species gain in abundance. A downstream systemic inflammatory signature culminates with macrophage migration to the synovium and accelerated knee OA. Oligofructose supplementation restores the lean gut microbiome in obese mice, in part, by supporting key commensal microflora, particularly Bifidobacterium pseudolongum. This is associated with reduced inflammation in the colon, circulation, and knee and protection from OA. This observation of a gut microbiome-OA connection sets the stage for discovery of potentially new OA therapeutics involving strategic manipulation of specific microbial species inhabiting the intestinal space.

Concepts: Asthma, Dietary fiber, Immune system, Rheumatoid arthritis, Osteoarthritis, Obesity, Inflammation, Gut flora


Hagfish slime threads, which make up the fibrous component of the defensive slime of hagfishes, consist primarily of proteins from the intermediate filament family of proteins and possess impressive mechanical properties that make them attractive biomimetic models. To investigate whether solubilized intermediate filament proteins can be used to make high-performance, environmentally sustainable materials, we cast thin films on the surface of electrolyte buffers using solubilized hagfish slime thread proteins. The films were drawn into fibers, and the tensile properties were measured. Fiber mechanics depended on casting conditions and postspinning processing. Postsecondary drawing resulted in fibers with improved material properties similar to those of regenerated silk fibers. Structural analyses of the fibers revealed increased molecular alignment resulting from the second draw, but no increase in crystallinity. Our findings show promise for intermediate filament proteins as an alternative source for the design and production of high performance protein-based fibers.

Concepts: Fibers, Materials, Cytoskeleton, Dietary fiber, Spider silk, Hagfish, Fiber, Tensile strength