Cereal Grain Belly? An Exploration Of How Grain Source Versus Produce Source Dietary Fiber Is Associated With Cardiometabolic Risk

Open Access
Boretz, Elise Joan
Area of Honors:
Nutritional Sciences
Bachelor of Science
Document Type:
Thesis Supervisors:
  • Patricia Y Miranda-Hartsuff, Thesis Supervisor
  • Rebecca L Corwin, Honors Advisor
  • Dr. Rhonda Be Lue, Faculty Reader
  • Fiber
  • waist circumference
  • nutrition
  • health policy and administration
  • diet
Introduction Obesity and its associated chronic diseases are persistent and growing problems in the United States. Dietary fiber can ameliorate risk through several physiological processes, though little research defines fiber types or sources that most efficiently control waistlines. Our investigation sought to understand whether higher ratios of grain fiber consumption frequency to produce fiber consumption frequency were associated with increased cardiometabolic risk, as measured by increased waist circumference. Methods We used the Dietary Screener Questionnaire and other relevant NHANES 2009-10 data sets to create a grain fiber source to produce fiber source ratio. Based on metabolic syndrome criteria, we generated a dichotomous outcome indicating cardiometabolic risk. We regressed this risk measure with the fiber source ratio and all relevant covariates. Results The ratio of grain to fruit and vegetable source frequency did not significantly alter odds of cardiometabolic risk when all covariates were controlled {OR=1.0513(0.953 - 1.161)}. Those of older age {OR=1.0377(1.0317 - 1.0437)} and higher sedentary activity {OR=1.0120(1.0072 - 1.0712)} had significantly greater odds of cardiometabolic risk when compared to those of lower age and sedentary activity. Males had significantly lower odds than did females {OR=0.3876(0.3291 - 0.4563)}; those identifying as other race had lower odds than did non-Hispanic whites {OR=0.5362(0.3686 - 7801)}; and college graduates had lower odds than did high school graduates {OR=0.5702(0.4515 - 0.7201)}. Discussion Significant differences between racial, ethnic, and income categories may be explained by health opportunities corresponding to low- and high-SES neighborhoods. The insignificant primary regression suggests that fiber source ratio has no influence on cardiometabolic risks, and invites further exploration of fiber source proportions in the diet.