Daily piece of fruit protects against deadly heart attacks and strokes
If you eat a piece of fruit every day, then your chances of a cardiovascular cause of death are lower than if you seldom or never eat fruit. Chinese epidemiologists write that in the New England Journal of Medicine.
The researchers used data from more than a half million Chinese adults from 35-70 years, who participated in the China Kadoorie Biobank Study. The researchers started to follow the study participants in the period 2004-2008. The average age of the study participants was then 50 years. The study ran until 2013-2014.
During the study, 5173 participants died as a result of a stroke, a heart attack or another cardiovascular cause. The researchers knew the dietary pattern of their study participants, and checked whether there was a link between the intake of fruit and cardiovascular diseases.
The more fruit the study participants ate, the lower was their glucose level and their blood pressure.
Fruit reduced the chance of a fatal form of cardiovascular disease. The study participants who ate a piece of fruit at least every day had about 40 percent less chance of dying as a result of a cardiovascular disease than the study participants who rarely or never ate fruit.
Of course, fruit consumption also reduced the risk of cardiovascular disease in general, fatal or not.
The correlation between the intake of fruit and cardiovascular disease was so great that it could only partly be explained by the effect of fruit on glucose levels and blood pressure.
"Our study does not permit reliable inference of causality, but the observed inverse association between fruit consumption and cardiovascular risk could be causal, given that fruit is a rich source of potassium, dietary fiber, folate, antioxidants, and various bioactive phytochemicals, each of which has potential cardioprotective effects, and contains little sodium and fat and few calories", the researchers write.
"In conclusion, our evaluation of the relationship between fresh fruit consumption and cardiovascular disease in China showed that the level of fruit consumption was inversely associated with blood pressure and blood glucose levels", summarize the researchers.
"Largely independent of blood pressure, blood glucose levels, and other dietary and nondietary factors, higher fruit consumption was associated with a significantly lower risk of major cardiovascular events."
N Engl J Med. 2016 Apr 7;374(14):1332-43.
Crisps and chocolate make you sombre; fruit makes you carefree and energetic 14.04.2016
Tinned fruit is not healthy 07.04.2016
Fruit polyphenols extend life span 08.02.2014