Apples and pears may help keep strokes away

Last Updated: Sep 16, 2011, 12:41 PM IST

Washington: Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables with white flesh, such as apples and pears, may protect against stroke, according to a new study.

Researchers examined the link between fruits and vegetable colour group consumption with 10-year stroke incidence in a population-based study of 20,069 adults, with an average age of 41.

The participants were free of cardiovascular diseases at the start of the study and completed a 178-item food frequency questionnaire for the previous year.

During 10 years of follow-up, 233 strokes were documented. Green, orange/yellow and red/purple fruits and vegetables weren’t related to stroke.

However, the risk of stroke incidence was 52 percent lower for people with a high intake of white fruits and vegetables compared to people with a low intake.

Each 25-gram per day increase in white fruits and vegetable consumption was associated with a 9 percent lower risk of stroke. An average apple is 120 grams.

“To prevent stroke, it may be useful to consume considerable amounts of white fruits and vegetables,” said Linda M. Oude Griep, M.Sc., lead author of the study and a postdoctoral fellow in human nutrition at Wageningen Uninversity in the Netherlands.

“For example, eating one apple a day is an easy way to increase white fruits and vegetable intake.

“However, other fruits and vegetable color groups may protect against other chronic diseases. Therefore, it remains of importance to consume a lot of fruits and vegetables.”

The study has been published in Stroke: Journal of the American Heart Association.

ANI