1. Rosenberg, Karen
  2. Singh Joy, Subhashni D.


According to this study:


* A diet high in fiber increased the risk of diverticulosis.


* There was no association between diverticulosis and exercise or the intake of red meat or fat.



Article Content

To examine factors related to development of asymptomatic diverticulosis, researchers analyzed data from phases III, IV, and V of the Diet and Health Studies, which recruited patients undergoing outpatient colonoscopy at the University of North Carolina hospitals between 1998 and 2010. The analysis involved 2,104 patients, of whom 878 had asymptomatic diverticulosis and 1,226 didn't; the latter served as the control group.


To the surprise of the study team, a dose-dependent relationship was found between fiber intake and the prevalence of diverticulosis, with high fiber intake associated with increased prevalence. The type of fiber ingested also mattered: diverticulosis was associated with high intakes of grain fiber, soluble fiber, and insoluble fiber but not bean or fruit and vegetable fiber. Just as surprising, diets high in fat or red meat were not associated with diverticulosis, nor was physical activity.


The intake of a high amount of fiber was also associated with a higher prevalence of more than two diverticula. In addition, constipation wasn't predictive of higher rates of diverticulosis. In fact, patients having seven or more bowel movements each week had a higher prevalence of diverticulosis.


The authors suggest that dietary recommendations and risk factors related to diverticulosis be reexamined in light of these data.-SDSJ




Peery AF, et al. Gastroenterology. 2012;142(2):266-72