Pilot study of the efficacy of spent grain dietary fiber in the treatment of constipation.Isr J Med Sci. 1986 Jan; 22(1):12-5.IJ
Spent grain is the crude fiber obtained by decanting the fermented distillate of barley. The spent grain was processed to yield dietary fiber composed of: cellulose and hemicellulose 65.6% (by weight), lignin 5.2%, pectin 2.2%, protein 10.9% and lipid 8.0%. Biscuits and scones were prepared by 25% substitution of wheat flour by fiber, yielding 7 to 8 g fiber per biscuit/scone. Nineteen ambulatory patients with chronic, laxative-dependent constipation were treated in a pilot study for 4 weeks with 20 to 25 g fiber daily. Fifteen patients (79%) showed improvement in some or all of five factors, while four patients were largely unresponsive to fiber. Specific symptoms improved as follows: bowel movement frequency in 15 patients (79%), flatulence in 12 (63%), abdominal pain in 10 (53%), stool consistency in 8 (42%) and laxative dependence in 14 (74%). A 4-week post-treatment follow-up showed a return to prefiber status in 11 of 13 improved subjects. This preliminary study suggests a role for spent grain fiber in the treatment of constipated patients, and a comparative study with placebo and wheat fiber is now warranted.