Fiber is an essential nutrient in the realm of cancer prevention. It does not break down through digestion and helps maintain bowel health and prevent cancers, including colorectal cancer. However, recent studies have also found that fiber may also be an essential nutrient for cancer treatment.
Researchers at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center and the Center for Cancer Research at the National Cancer Institute found that a high-fiber diet may help melanoma patients respond better to immunotherapy treatments. The high-fiber diet influences the gut microbiome, which impacts responsiveness.
Immunotherapy in Cancer Treatment
Immunotherapy is a game-changing treatment option for cancer patients. Medical professionals utilize the body’s natural immune system defense to recognize and destroy cancer cells. Immunotherapy has quickly become the most promising path to successfully treating cancer.
The study found melanoma patients undergoing immunotherapy treatment who ate more fiber-rich foods such as whole grains and fresh produce survived longer without cancer growth than patients with insufficient dietary fiber intake. The researchers noted that patients who consumed at least 20 grams of dietary fiber each day survived the longest without their disease progressing.
These significant findings have the potential to save countless lives. The research also offers a launchpad to explore other ways diet may impact immunotherapy effectiveness.