Topical Area: Medical Nutrition/Case Study Vignettes
(P16-018-20) Effectiveness of Fiber Supplementation for Gastrointestinal Function: An Umbrella Review of Meta-Analyses
Objectives: To determine if published meta-analyses support the use of fiber supplementation in the treatment of constipation and the dietary support for gastrointestinal disorders such as irritable bowel syndrome, and inflammatory bowel disease.
Methods: A PubMed search from January 1, 1980 to November 30, 2019 was conducted with the following search strategy: (fiber OR fibre) AND (meta-analysis OR systematic review) AND (constipation OR irritable bowel syndrome OR inflammatory bowel disease). Meta-analyses that provided quantitative statistical analysis with a measured effect size were retrieved and accepted into this review. The following was extracted and entered into an Excel spreadsheet: number of publications included in the meta-analysis, number of total participants, fiber type and daily dose, pooled treatment effects for clinical endpoints and/or summary relative risks (RR’s).
Results: Thirteen meta-analyses support dietary fiber supplementation for patients with constipation and irritable bowel syndrome, but the significant heterogeneity and publication bias undermines the support for using dietary fiber supplementation on these conditions.
Conclusions: This umbrella review of meta-analyses finds some benefits for recommending fiber supplementation to patients with constipation and irritable bowel syndrome, but significant heterogeneity and publication bias undermines this support.
Funding Sources: No funding sources were utilized.
Marc P. McRae
Professor National University of Health Sciences Bolingbrook, Illinois