Interventions and public health nutrition

Total, insoluble, and soluble dietary fiber intake and insulin resistance and blood pressure in adolescents



To evaluate sex and race differences in fiber intakes, which are understudied in adolescents, and to investigate whether low insoluble and soluble fiber intakes would be associated with higher risk for insulin resistance and blood pressure (BP).


A total of 754 black and white adolescents, 14 to 18 years old (49.2% blacks; 50.3% female), were previously recruited in Augusta, Georgia, USA, between 2001 and 2005. Diet was assessed with four to seven independent 24 h dietary recalls.


The average daily consumption of total, insoluble, and soluble fiber were 10.9, 6.7, and 4.0 g, respectively. Only two adolescents met their daily fiber intake recommendation. Adjusted multiple linear regressions revealed that increasing dietary fiber intake from current averages to recommendation levels (12 g to 38 g in the male and 9.9 g to 25 g in the female) were associated with predicted decreases of 5.4 and 3.0 mg/dL fasting glucose, 7.0 and 5.0 mg/dL fasting insulin, 1.6 and 1.1 HOMA-IR, 6.3 and 3.7 mm Hg SBP, and 5.2 and 3.0 mm Hg DBP in the males and females, respectively (all p < 0.05). Furthermore, both insoluble and soluble fiber intakes were inversely associated with fasting insulin and HOMA-IR (p < 0.05), whereas only soluble fiber intake was found to be associated with BP (p < 0.05).


Fiber consumption in adolescents is far below daily-recommended levels across all sex and race groups. Lower fiber intake of all types is associated with higher insulin level. Fiber Intake at recommendation levels may be associated with significant cardiometabolic benefits.

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This work was supported by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (HL64157) to BG for supporting the Lifestyle, Adiposity, and Cardiovascular Health in Youth (LACHY) study.

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Correspondence to Haidong Zhu.

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Dong, Y., Chen, L., Gutin, B. et al. Total, insoluble, and soluble dietary fiber intake and insulin resistance and blood pressure in adolescents. Eur J Clin Nutr 73, 1172–1178 (2019).

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