Hard scientific evidence of the effects of diet, pharmaceutical drugs & lifestyle on health from over 1,400 studies from research centers, universities and peer reviewed scientific journals.

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Research by David Evans

Monday, 28 January 2013

High-fibre supplement (psyllium) linked to colon cancer risk

This study was published in the Lancet 2000 Oct 14;356(9238):1300-6
Study title and authors:
Calcium and fibre supplementation in prevention of colorectal adenoma recurrence: a randomised intervention trial. European Cancer Prevention Organisation Study Group.
Bonithon-Kopp C, Kronborg O, Giacosa A, Räth U, Faivre J.
Registre Bourguignon des Tumeurs Digestives, Faculté de Médecine de Dijon, France.
This study can be accessed at: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11073017

Ispaghula husk is a soluble fibre that comes from a shrub-like herb, Plantago psyllium. Ispaghula husk is also known as psyllium, psyllium seed, psyllium husk, ispaghula or ispaghula seed.

Ispaghula husk is a central ingredient in many high-fibre cereals, and is often combined with wheat and oats. It is also contained in many processed foods such as "health drinks", bread, biscuits, rice cakes, instant noodles and other bakery products and is also sold as a supplement such as Metamucil, Colon Cleanse, Serutan, Fybogel, Bonvit, Effersyllium, and Konsyl. 

This study investigated the effect of ispaghula husk supplementation on recurrence of colorectal adenomas in patients with a history of colorectal adenomas. (An adenoma is a benign tumor of glandular origin. Although these growths are benign, over time they may progress to become malignant). The study included 665 patients who received either supplementation or placebo and were followed for three years.

The study found that patients who had the ispaghula husk had a 67% increased risk of recurrence of colorectal adenomas compared to patients who had placebo.