Ultra-Processed Food Increases The Risk of Inflammatory Bowel Disease
By Pierre Mouchette | Bits-n-Pieces
Researchers have found that a high intake of ultra-processed foods is associated with an increased risk of IBD. It was noted for all ultra-processed foods and individual types, such as processed meats, soft drinks, refined sweetened foods, and salty foods and snacks.
Health risks of processed foods
The researchers analyzed data from more than 116,000 participants enrolled in the Prospective Urban Rural Epidemiology (PURE) study. They looked closely at the participants’ dietary habits and followed up with them over nearly ten years to determine how their food choices impacted their health.
The researchers learned that participants who ate the most ultra-processed foods were at the highest risk of developing IBD, including ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease. Participants who ate as many as four servings of processed foods each day were nearly 70% more likely to develop IBD, while those who consumed five or more servings each day were more than 80% more likely to develop IBD.
The researchers also looked at the effects of specific food choices on the risk of IBD. They determined that it was not necessarily bad food choices but how the food is prepared. The team does not recommend eliminating things like red meat, dairy products, or certain legumes; however, they say consumers should opt for fresher varieties of these options instead of ultra-processed versions.
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