News in Brief: Avoiding gluten doesn’t prevent IBD; Best bowel prep for IBD patients; How to avoid inflammatory gut microbiome

Wednesday, 14 Apr 2021

Gluten intake not associated with increased risk of CD or UC

Avoiding gluten, which may have adverse health effects in people who don’t have a medical reason to, should not be recommended for the purpose of preventing IBD, new research suggests.

The maligned protein is increasingly perceived as a trigger for a host of chronic gastrointestinal diseases despite its relationship with IBD not being extensively studied, say US investigators.

They carried out an analysis of three large US cohorts including more than 200,000 participants without IBD or coeliac disease at baseline who had completed food frequency questionnaires.

Over more than 5,000,000 person-years follow-up data, investigators saw no evidence that eating food containing gluten increased risk for ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s Disease with participants in the lowest and highest quintiles of gluten intake showing no signifiant difference in risk for developing the chronic gut conditions.

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Best bowel prep for IBD patients 

While Moviprep (Mp) and Prep-Kit C (Pc) show similar efficacy for bowel preparation in IBD and non-IBD patients more patients with IBD experience abdominal pain with Mp, according to Australian research.

The randomised trial involving 338 patients is the first to compare the efficacy of Pc with Mp in non-IBD or IBD populations, say investigators from Gold Coast University Hospital.

The findings reinforce the importance of educating IBD patients about bowel preparation including the possibility for reduced tolerance and more abdomen pain, say investigators, who note that doing so could have a positive impact on bowel preparation quality and compliance with surveillance protocols.

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Veggies promote anti-inflammatory gut microbiome

New research investigating 173 dietary factors and the gut microbiome of 1,425 people has provided further support for a largely plant-based diet to reduce the intestinal inflammation underlying many chronic diseases.

The study found higher intake of animal foods, processed foods, alcohol and sugar were associated with a microbial environment characteristic of inflammation, and higher levels of intestinal inflammatory markers.

In contrast, food such as nuts, oily fish, fruits, vegetables, cereals and red wine were associated with commensal microbiota known to be anti-inflammatory such as Roseburia sp.

“We identified significant associations that replicate across patients with Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, irritable bowel syndrome and the general population, implying a potential for microbiome-targeted dietary strategies to alleviate and prevent intestinal inflammation,” the Dutch researchers said.

“We provide support for the idea that the diet can be a significant complementary therapeutic strategy through the modulation of the gut microbiome.”


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