Image for Whole Grain Consumption Linked to Reduced Disease Risk
Copyright 2013 Natural Standard (
January 2012

Whole Grain Consumption Linked to Reduced Disease Risk

A recent study suggests that consuming whole grains may reduce the risk for chronic disease in adolescents.

Whole grains are an important component of a high fiber diet. A high fiber diet incorporates large amounts of dietary fiber. Dietary fiber, also referred to as roughage or bulk, is the part of a plant that cannot be digested or absorbed by the body. Dietary fiber is found in grains, fruits and vegetables. There is no fiber in animal products such as meat, fish, eggs or dairy products.

In a new study, using data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, researchers reviewed whole grain intake, weight and chronic disease risk factors, such as smoking and physical activity, for 4,928 individuals between 12 and 19 years-old.

The researchers found that higher whole grain intake may be associated with higher intake of carbohydrates, folate and other important nutrients. Consuming more whole grains may also be linked to lower body mass index and better blood sugar control; however, the authors noted that these findings were only present when the data was adjusted for food group intake.

The researchers concluded that eating more whole grains may be associated with better nutrient intake and a lower risk of chronic disease among adolescents. However, more research is necessary to further understand these findings.

For more information about whole grains and high-fiber diets, please visit Natural Standard's Health & Wellness Database.

To comment on this story, please visit Natural Standard's blog.


  1. Hur I, Reicks M. Relationship between Whole-Grain Intake, Chronic Disease Risk Indicators, and Weight Status among Adolescents in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 1999-2004. J Am Diet Assoc. January 2012. doi:10.1016/j.jada.2011.08.028
  2. Natural Standard: The Authority on Integrative Medicine.
The information in this brief report is intended for informational purposes only, and is meant to help users better understand health concerns. This information should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. Users should consult with a qualified healthcare provider for specific questions regarding therapies, diagnosis and/or health conditions, prior to making therapeutic decisions. Copyright 2013 Natural Standard Inc. Commercial distribution or reproduction prohibited.