January 5, 2004
Whole Grains May Help Weight Loss
Women who consumed more whole grains consistently weighedless than women who consumed less whole grains, according to a Harvard studythat examined the relationship between intake of dietary fiber and whole- orrefined-grain foods and weight gain (Am J Clin Nutr, 78, 5:920-7, 2003) (www.ajcn.org).
The study began in 1984 and included 74,091 U.S. nurses between the ages of38 and 63 who were free of cardiovascular disease, cancer and diabetes. Over thenext 12 years, their dietary habits were assessed--in 1984, 1986, 1990 and1994--with food-frequency questionnaires.
Researchers took into account subjects weight, body mass index (BMI),long-term weight changes and odds ratio of developing obesity. Results showedwomen with the lowest intake of dietary fiber gained an average of 1.52 kg morecompared to women with the highest intake of dietary fiber; women in the lowestquintile of dietary fiber intake had a 49-percent higher risk of major weightgain compared to women in the highest quintile. The researchers concluded, [W]eightgain was inversely associated with the intake of high-fiber, whole-grain foodsbut positively related to the intake of refined-grain foods.
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