• Assessment
    What is the evidence that dietary fiber from whole foods and dietary supplements is beneficial in obesity?
    • Conclusion

      Dietary Fiber from Whole Foods

      High-fiber diets may be associated with less overweight and obesity. Dietary fiber intakes of 20g to 27.3g per day were associated with lower BMI and less weight gain. Two intervention studies did not show benefit, but only five to 10g fiber per day was added. It is important to note that although there may have been no benefit in terms of weight-loss, there may be benefit in terms of other health outcomes such as serum lipids, glucose and insulin. Further study is required to identify specific recommendations for optimal dosage and types of fiber in weight management.

      Fiber Supplements

      The majority of studies providing up to 20g of fiber per day produced weight-loss in obese and overweight individuals. These studies are limited by the utilization of both soluble and insoluble fibers from several sources, some with combinations of sources within studies, as well as the inclusion of weight-reducing diets in some of the studies. Fiber supplements may also have beneficial effects on energy intake, hunger and satiety and blood pressure, however further study is required to identify specific recommendations for optimal doses and types of fiber. 


      Based on current data, dietary fiber intake from whole foods or supplements may have some benefit in terms of weight-loss and other health outcomes. Benefits may occur with intakes of 20g to 27g per day from whole foods or up to 20g of fiber per day from supplements.

    • Grade: III
      • Grade I means there is Good/Strong evidence supporting the statement;
      • Grade II is Fair;
      • Grade III is Limited/Weak;
      • Grade IV is Expert Opinion Only;
      • Grade V is Not Assignable.
      • High (A) means we are very confident that the true effect lies close to that of the estimate of the effect;
      • Moderate (B) means we are moderately confident in the effect estimate;
      • Low (C) means our confidence in the effect estimate is limited;
      • Very Low (D) means we have very little confidence in the effect estimate.
      • Ungraded means a grade is not assignable.
    • Search Plan and Results: Dietary Fiber vs. Fiber Supplement: Obesity