ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Overweight Moms More Likely to Have Asthmatic Kids
Traffic, Dust Linked to Asthma in Kids
Keep Asthma, Allergies at Bay for the Holidays
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Massage Therapy Helps Those With Advanced Cancer
Maggots as Good as Gel in Leg Ulcer Treatments
Eight Spiritual Universal Principles in the Art of Practice
ANIMAL CARE
Safe Toys for Dogs
Animals Respond to Acupuncture's Healing Touch
Beware of Dog Bites
BONES & JOINTS
Chronic Low Back Pain Is on the Rise
Rheumatoid Arthritis Rising Among U.S. Women
Stem Cells Might Treat Tough Fractures
CANCER
Family History Key Player in Brain Cancer Risk
Selenium, Omega-3s May Stave Off Colorectal Cancer
Green Tea Compound Slowed Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia
CAREGIVING
High Rate of Rehospitalizations Costing Billions
Timing May Matter in Organ Donation Decisions
Health Tip: Benefitting From Adult Day Care
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Support Network May Play Role in Benefits of Drinking
Night Shift Work Hard on the Heart
Secondhand Smoke Quickly Affects Blood Vessels
COSMETIC
What to Do If You Have Unsightly Veins
Health Tip: After Liposuction
Get Sugared!.... Its a sweet choice for hair removal
DENTAL, ORAL
Health Tip: At Risk for Gingivitis
Acupuncture May Ease Anxiety Over Dental Work
Hormones May Be to Blame for Women's Cavity Rates
DIABETES
Vitamin K Slows Insulin Resistance in Older Men
Spices, Herbs Boost Health for Diabetics
'Standard' Glucose Test May Be Wrong One for Obese Children
DIET, NUTRITION
Soluble Fiber, But Not Bran, Soothes Irritable Bowel
Asparagus May Ease Hangover
School Meals Need to Get Healthier
DISABILITIES
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Environmental Chemicals May Affect Male Reproduction
Climate Change Could Sting Allergy, Asthma Sufferers
Meat-Eating Dinosaurs Used Legs and Arms Like Birds
EYE CARE, VISION
When Corks Fly, Watch the Eyes
Poor Night Vision May Predict Age-Related Eye Disease
Kids Think Glasses Make Others Look Smart, Honest
FITNESS
Living With Less TV, More Sweat Boosts Weight Loss
Community Exercise Programs Boost Seniors' Strength
When It Comes to Lifting, the Pros Have Your Back
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Traditional Nonsurgical GERD Treatments Not Impressive
Japanese Herbals May Ease Gastro Woes
Soothing Imagery May Help Rid Some Kids of Stomach Pain
GENERAL HEALTH
Standard IQ Test May Underestimate People With Autism
Eating Nuts May Help Cholesterol Levels
Any Old Cane Won't Do
HEAD & NECK
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
Airport Full Body Scanners Pose No Health Threat: Experts
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Magnet Therapy May Ease Hard-to-Treat Depression
HEARING
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Brown Rice Tied to Better Heart Health in Study
Omega-3, Some Omega-6 Fatty Acids Boost Cardiovascular Health
Western Diet Linked To Heart Disease, Metabolic Syndrome
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Swine Flu Now Reported in All 50 States
More Medicinal Uses for Pomegranate
Chinese 'Devil Dung' Plant Could Be a Swine Flu Fighter
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Folic Acid Reduces Infant Heart Defects
Working Intensely Early on May Help Autistic Kids
Gene Variation Found in Boys With Delinquent Peers
MEN'S HEALTH
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
Could Chinese Herb Be a Natural Viagra?
Drinking Green Tea May Slow Prostate Cancer
MENTAL HEALTH
Music Soothes Anxiety as Well as Massage Does
How to Attack Holiday Stress Head-On
Common Social Groups and Race, Seem to Help People Relate
PAIN
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
Are We Exercising Pain Away? Not So Much.
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Exercise As Well As Acupuncture, May Ease Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
For Baby and Mom Alike, Breast-Feeding May Be Best
Before Conceiving, Take Folic Acid for One Full Year
SENIORS
Tai Chi and Qigong Offer Many Health Benefits: Review
Common Antioxidant Might Slow Parkinson's
Martial Arts Training May Save Seniors' Hips
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Meditation May Help Put Primary Insomnia to Bed
Sleeping Could Help Women Lose The Baby Fat
Moderate Aerobics May Ease Insomnia Symptoms
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Sugary Colas Tied to Gestational Diabetes
A Brisk Pace May Keep Stroke at Bay
Acupuncture May Relieve Acid Indigestation In Pregnancy
Add your Article

Soluble Fiber, But Not Bran, Soothes Irritable Bowel

(HealthDay News) -- People with the chronic condition known as irritable bowel syndrome may find relief by consuming soluble fiber (psyllium).

But they'll get no relief -- and perhaps more bowel upset -- from bran, a new Dutch study found.

IBS, which involves chronic abdominal discomfort and irregular bowel habits, affects about one in 10 Americans. Some experts have advised increased intake of dietary fiber, but data on the effectiveness of this approach has been limited.

In the study, published online Aug. 28 in BMJ, a team at the University Medical Center Utrecht had 275 adult patients with IBS consume either 10 grams of psyllium (soluble fiber), bran (insoluble fiber) or a placebo twice daily for three months. They then checked patient symptoms at one, two and three months, including abdominal pain and quality of life.

The researchers found psyllium to be most effective in treating IBS. After three months of follow-up, people taking psyllium had a 90-point drop in symptom severity, on average. This compared to a 58-point drop among those taking bran and 49-point drop for those taking the placebo. While symptom severity was eased, the researchers found no difference between the groups in terms of abdominal pain or quality of life.

Bran showed "no clinically relevant benefit," the researchers said in a news release. In fact, many patients couldn't tolerate the bran and this group experienced the highest dropout rate.

The findings suggest that psyllium, but not bran, may be a useful first treatment approach to help manage IBS, the researchers said, while bran may not help -- or may even exacerbate -- the condition.

SOURCES: BMJ, news release, Aug. 28, 2009