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Fibre, Medicinal uses
Each type of dietary fibre has its unique characteristics; although high fibre generally is known to help many conditions such as constipation, hypertension, high cholesterol, heart disease, duodenal ulcers, diverticulosis, diabetes, colon cancer,haemorrhoids, irritable bowel syndrome and obesity. Dietary fibre can also reduce the feeling of hunger and contribute to weight loss.
Each type of dietary fibre has its unique characteristics:
Cellulose and Hemicellulose: which abound in foods such as apples, pears, whole grains and beans, are indigestible and help constipation, haemorrhoids and colitis.
Lignin: which is found in foods such as whole grains, carrots, tomatoes and potatoes, is an indigestible fibre that is useful for lowering cholesterol, preventing gallstones and colon cancer.
Pectin: abounds in apples and is good for diabetes, lowering cholesterol and reducing the risk of heart disease and gallstones.
Gums and mucilages: found in foods such as oatmeal, oatbran and beans, help to remove toxins and regulate blood sugar level and also lower cholesterol. See 'Fibre, Dietary'