A deficiency of dietary fiber may be one cause of certain colonic and venous disorders


Burkitt DP




Am J Dig Dis


Diverticular disease of the colon, appendicitis, cancer of the colon and rectum, hiatus hernia, hemorrhoids, and varicose veins all have been postulated to be due to the removal of fiber from plant foods. The epidemiological features, the argument of association, and an associated physiological change that led to this hypothesis are discussed. The postulated hypotheses of pathogenesis are discussed in terms of mechanical effects of constipation, diseases postulated to result from raised intraluminal pressures (diverticular disease and appendicitis), diseases postulated to result from raised intraabdominal pressure (hemorrhoids, varicose veins, and hiatus hernia), and delayed transit time and reduced vol of fecal mass.