The journal Nutrients recently published an important paper by Ramboll Health Sciences experts Cynthia Van Landingham and Matthew Longnecker in a special issue looking at the effects of nutrients on immune and inflammatory responses.
The paper, Serum concentration of antibodies to mumps, but not measles, rubella, or varicella, is associated with intake of dietary fiber, uses epidemiological data to investigate the potential effect of dietary fiber on immunogenicity. The authors examined serum antibody concentrations (measles, mumps, rubella, and varicella) in relation to dietary fiber in more than 12,000 subjects in the US National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey for the period 1999–2004.
Fiber from grain-based foods was more positively associated than fiber from other fiber-containing food groups. The study concluded that dietary fiber may have a favorable influence on the immunogenicity (the ability of a foreign substance, such as an antigen, to provoke an immune response) of some vaccines or natural infections.
According to Ramboll’s Principal Consultant Dr Matthew Longnecker, “A recent meta-analysis suggested that prebiotics, a type of dietary fiber, increase antibody response to the flu vaccine. Our study indicates that fiber may be good for other aspects of the immune system.”
Nutrients is a peer-reviewed open access journal of human nutrition.