Fiber is good for more than your gut
People often look to supplements and diet to improve their health. But what about helping to survive skin cancer? A recent study says yes.
The well-respected journal Science, published by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) the world’s oldest and largest general science organization, highlighted a new study that shows a positive link between a high fiber diet and skin cancer recovery.
Specifically, the December 2021 Science journal article abstract reported on the study that showed a high-fiber diet had a significant benefit in the survival of patients with melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer. Probiotics, unfortunately, negated the benefit. The patient group in the study were on immunotherapy for advanced melanoma but it’s probable that this benefit applies to all melanoma patients.
The study findings provide early insights into how diet-related factors may influence a patient’s immune response.
Technically speaking, dietary fiber, not probiotics, influence a patient’s gut microbiome and, in turn, their melanoma immunotherapy treatment response.
A person’s ‘gut microbiome’ is made up of trillions of microorganisms and their genetic material that live in the intestinal tract. These microorganisms, mainly comprising bacteria, are involved in functions critical to health and wellbeing.
In this observational study, researchers found that melanoma patients reporting high fiber (prebiotic) diet consumption had a better response to checkpoint inhibitor immunotherapy (their melanoma skin cancer treatment) compared with those patients reporting a low-fiber diet.
The most marked benefit was observed for those patients reporting a combination of high fiber consumption and no use of over-the-counter probiotic supplements.
At OlyDerm, we care for our skin cancer patients with the most current, trusted treatments that are individualized to provide the best possible outcomes. We stay abreast of influencers, like the one in this article, to help ensure our patients recovery is complete.
Remember, when caught early, skin cancer is highly treatable, including melanomas, with a cure rate of almost 100%. Proper treatment starts with diagnosis by a dermatologist and appropriate treatment.