Intended for healthcare professionals

Letters Irritable bowel syndrome

The problem of insoluble fibre in irritable bowel syndrome

BMJ 2009; 338 doi: (Published 06 January 2009) Cite this as: BMJ 2009;338:a3149
  1. Peter J Whorwell, professor of medicine and gastroenterology1
  1. 1Wythenshawe Hospital, Manchester M23 9LT
  1. peter.whorwell{at}

    I was surprised to read in the popular press that, according to the BMJ,1 fibre is good for irritable bowel syndrome.

    In 1994 we suggested that, at least in secondary care, cereal fibre was more likely to do harm than good in patients with irritable bowel syndrome.2 Now, as a gastroenterologist probably seeing more cases of severe irritable bowel than most of my colleagues, I find that the total exclusion of all …

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