Dietary fiber, kidney function, inflammation, and mortality risk

Clin J Am Soc Nephrol. 2014 Dec 5;9(12):2104-10. doi: 10.2215/CJN.02260314. Epub 2014 Oct 3.


Background and objectives: In the United States population, high dietary fiber intake has been associated with a lower risk of inflammation and mortality in individuals with kidney dysfunction. This study aimed to expand such findings to a Northern European population.

Design, setting, participants, & measurements: Dietary fiber intake was calculated from 7-day dietary records in 1110 participants aged 70-71 years from the Uppsala Longitudinal Study of Adult Men (examinations performed during 1991-1995). Dietary fiber was adjusted for total energy intake by the residual method. Renal function was estimated from the concentration of serum cystatin C, and deaths were registered prospectively during a median follow-up of 10.0 years.

Results: Dietary fiber independently and directly associated with eGFR (adjusted difference, 2.6 ml/min per 1.73 m(2) per 10 g/d higher; 95% confidence interval [95% CI], 0.3 to 4.9). The odds of C-reactive protein >3 mg/L were lower (linear trend, P=0.002) with higher fiber quartiles. During follow-up, 300 participants died (incidence rate of 2.87 per 100 person-years at risk). Multiplicative interactions were observed between dietary fiber intake and kidney dysfunction in the prediction of mortality. Higher dietary fiber was associated with lower mortality in unadjusted analysis. These associations were stronger in participants with kidney dysfunction (eGFR<60 ml/min per 1.73 m(2)) (hazard ratio [HR], 0.58; 95% CI, 0.35 to 0.98) than in those without (HR, 1.30; 95% CI, 0.76 to 2.22; P value for interaction, P=0.04), and were mainly explained by a lower incidence of cancer-related deaths (0.25; 95% CI, 0.10 to 0.65) in individuals with kidney dysfunction versus individuals with an eGFR≥60 ml/min per 1.73 m(2) (1.61; 95% CI, 0.69 to 3.74; P value for interaction, P=0.01).

Conclusions: High dietary fiber was associated with better kidney function and lower inflammation in community-dwelling elderly men from Sweden. High dietary fiber was also associated with lower (cancer) mortality risk, especially in individuals with kidney dysfunction.

Keywords: CKD; GFR; chronic inflammation; mortality risk; nutrition.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • C-Reactive Protein / metabolism
  • Cause of Death
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Cystatin C / blood
  • Dietary Fiber*
  • Glomerular Filtration Rate
  • Humans
  • Inflammation / blood
  • Inflammation / epidemiology*
  • Kidney / physiopathology*
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Neoplasms / mortality*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Sweden / epidemiology


  • Cystatin C
  • Dietary Fiber
  • C-Reactive Protein