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Dietary fibre intake and its association with inflammatory markers in adolescents

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  07 May 2020

Olivia G. Swann
Menzies Institute for Medical Research, University of Tasmania, Hobart, Tasmania7000, Australia
Monique Breslin
Menzies Institute for Medical Research, University of Tasmania, Hobart, Tasmania7000, Australia
Michelle Kilpatrick
Menzies Institute for Medical Research, University of Tasmania, Hobart, Tasmania7000, Australia
Therese A. O’Sullivan
School of Medicine and Health Science, Edith Cowan University, Joondalup, Western Australia6027, Australia
Trevor A. Mori
Medical School, Royal Perth Hospital Unit, University of Western Australia, Perth, Western Australia6000, Australia
Lawrence J. Beilin
Medical School, Royal Perth Hospital Unit, University of Western Australia, Perth, Western Australia6000, Australia
Wendy H. Oddy
Menzies Institute for Medical Research, University of Tasmania, Hobart, Tasmania7000, Australia
E-mail address:


A high dietary fibre intake has been associated with improvements in inflammatory conditions in adults. However, little is known on whether associations between dietary fibre and inflammation are evident during adolescence. We examined the relationship between dietary fibre intake measured by FFQ and the inflammatory marker high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) and the adipokines leptin and adiponectin cross-sectionally in 17-year-olds participating in the Raine Study (n 621). In weighted analysis using tobit and linear regression, and after excluding participants with hs-CRP > 10 mg/l, higher total dietary fibre intake (per 5 g/d) was significantly associated with lower leptin (β = –0·13, 95 % CI –0·17, –0·09) and adiponectin (β = –0·28, 95 % CI –0·49, –0·07), but not hs-CRP, in unadjusted analyses. These associations were no longer significant after adjustment for sex, anthropometry and a number of lifestyle factors. However, higher cereal and grain fibre intake was significantly associated with lower leptin (β = –0·06, 95 % CI –0·10, –0·01) in fully adjusted analysis. Our findings suggest that a higher intake of cereal and grain fibre may contribute to lower leptin in adolescents. This may contribute to reductions in low-grade chronic inflammation and improved health outcomes.

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© The Author(s), 2020. Published by Cambridge University Press on behalf of The Nutrition Society

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