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Estimating the potential public health impact of fibre enrichment: a UK modelling study

For improving human health, reformulation can be a tool as it allows individuals to consume products of choice while reducing intake of less desirable nutrients, such as sugars and fats, and potentially increasing intake of beneficial nutrients such as fibre. The potential effects of reformulating foods with increased fibre on diet and health need to be better understood. The objective of this statistical modelling study was to understand how fibre enrichment can affect the diet and health of consumers. The UK National Diet and Nutrition Survey datasets from 2014 to 2015 and 2015 to 2016 were utilised to evaluate intakes of fibre and kilocalories with a dietary intake model. Foods and beverages eligible for fibre enrichment were identified (n 915) based on EU legislation for fibre content claims. Those people who meet dietary reference values and fibre enrichment health outcomes such as weight, CVD and type 2 diabetes risk reductions were quantified pre- and post-fibre reformulation via Reynolds et al., D’Agostino et al. and QDiabetes algorithms, respectively. The fibre enrichment intervention showed a mean fibre intake of 19·9 g/d in the UK, signifying a 2·2 g/d increase from baseline. Modelling suggested that 5·9 % of subjects could achieve a weight reduction, 72·2 % a reduction in cardiovascular risk and 71·7 % a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes with fibre fortification (all Ps ≤ 0·05). This study gives a good overview of the potential public health benefits of reformulating food products using a straightforward enrichment scenario.

Authors: Canene-Adams K, Laurie I, Karnik K, Flynn B, Goodwin W, Pigat S

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