According to a new study by researchers at Georgia State University, adding highly refined fiber to processed foods could have negative effects on human health, how to increase the chance of having liver cancer.
While eating whole foods naturally rich in fiber confers a number of health benefits, enriching foods with highly refined soluble fibers, such as inulin, doesn't seem like such a good idea.
The researchers proposed to test the idea that a diet enriched with inulin Refined may help to combat the complications associated with obesity in mice.
While a diet containing inulin prevented obesity, some of the mice began to develop jaundice, that is, a yellowing of the skin and mucous membranes that is caused by an increase in bilirubin in the blood as a result of certain liver disorders.
After six months, many of these mice developed liver cancer. The mice that developed liver cancer in this study had preexisting dysbiosis, that is, an altered intestinal microbiota composition that plays a central role in liver cancer.
The inulin used in this study comes from the chicory root, not from a food we normally eat. So these findings highlight the need for more studies that analyze the effects of eating a human diet.
According Benoit Chassaing, assistant professor at the Georgia State Institute of Neurosciences:
I don't want to promote fiber to be bad. Rather, our research highlights that enriching processed foods with fiber may not be safe for certain people with intestinal bacterial dysbiosis, in whom the consumption of purified fiber can cause liver cancer.