herald

Sunday 19 August 2018

Eating fruit reduces heart risks by 40pc

Eating fruit every day can reduce the risk of heart and artery disease by up to 40pc, a study has found.

Compared with avoiding fruit altogether, daily consumption also cut the overall risk of death by nearly a third in at-risk individuals, said researchers.

While previous studies have shown the benefits of fruit and vegetables to heart health, few have focused on fruit alone.

Investigation

The new research led by scientists at Oxford University involved almost half a million people from China taking part in a large health and lifestyle investigation.

Fruit consumption frequency was recorded at the start of the seven-year follow-up period. The number of occasions people ate fruit ranged between never, one to three days per week, four to six days per week, and daily.

Around 18pc of participants consumed fruit daily while 6.3pc avoided all fruit.

The findings showed that compared with consuming none, eating fruit every day cut the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) by 25-40pc.

A dose response was also seen. The more fruit that was consumed, the more the risk of CVD fell.

The study, presented at the European Society of Cardiology's annual meeting in Barcelona, Spain, showed that eating fruit also had a significant impact on blood pressure.

Blood pressure readings were up to 4.1 millimetres of mercury lower for people who ate fruit every day than for those who never ate fruit.

hnews@herald.ie

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