Have a Plant: Fruits & Veggies for Better Health

About The Buzz: A Fruit-Rich Diet Reduces Cardiovascular Disease by 40%?

TheBUZZ A fruit-rich diet reduces cardiovascular disease by 40%?

WHAT THEY’RE SAYING

New research demonstrates that a diet high in fruit may reduce an individual’s risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) by up to 40%.

WHAT WE KNOW

Around the world, CVD is the number one cause of death. CVD includes a range of conditions that affect your heart, such as ischaemic heart disease (IHD) and atherosclerosis. All of these conditions involve a narrowing or blocking of vessels, which may lead to heart attack, chest pain (angina) or stroke.1 The impact of CVD can severely impact an individual’s quality of life and result in a decreased life expectancy. The good news is that CVD can be prevented by simple, yet incredibly effective, lifestyle choices. Want to take care of your heart? The answer is simpler than you would think – eat lots of fruit.

HOW DO WE KNOW THIS

Research presented in September 2014 through the European Society of Cardiology highlighted the work of Dr. Huaidong Du from Oxford, UK. Dr. Huaidong’s work studied the connection between fruit intake and rates of CVD in China.

In a seven-year study of nearly half a million people, Dr. Huaidong discovered that the more fruit they ate, the less likely they were to develop CVD. The study included 10 different areas in China, both urban and rural. Fruit consumption was categorized into several categories: never, monthly, 1-3 days per week, 4-6 days per week, and every day. About 18% of participants ate fruit daily and 6% never consumed fruit.

Among those who ate an average of 1.5 servings or 150 grams of fruit daily, their risk of CVD was cut by 25-40%. The researchers demonstrated a dose-response relationship between fruit consumption and CVD: eating fruit daily is more beneficial than eating fruit 1-3 days a week or eating no fruit.

OUR ADVICE

In addition to reducing their risk of developing CVD, daily fruit eaters also showed lower rates of overall mortality: people who ate fruit every day cut their overall risk of death by over 30%. This study highlights the important health effects of daily fruit consumption. Feeling motivated? Try this …

7 Ways to Add More Fruit to Your Diet

  1. Aim to fill half your plate with fruits and vegetables at each meal or snack.
  2. Keep a bowl of fresh fruit on the table, counter or in the refrigerator.
  3. Replace processed snack foods such as chips, crackers, or baked goods with fruit.
  4. Fruit is fruit, whether it is dried, dehydrated, canned, fresh, or frozen. It all matters! Try adding more dried fruit into cereals, salads, or favorite dishes.
  5. Keep canned fruit on hand for days when you can’t make it to the grocery store. 5 Facts about Canned Fruit
  6. Purchase produce that is in season. Fresh seasonal produce may be less expensive and at its peak flavor (yum!).
  7. Explore our recipe database to discover new fruit inspired recipes. Try meat dishes that incorporate fruit, such as chicken with mangoes and pineapple.

 

1 Heart disease (2014). Definition. View Article

2 “Fruit consumption cuts CVD risk by 40%”. (2014). European Society of Cardiology. Press release. View Article

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