“Eat your fruits and vegetables” is one of the tried and true recommendations for a healthy diet, and for good reason. Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables can help you ward off heart disease and stroke, control blood pressure and cholesterol, prevent some types of cancer, avoid a painful intestinal ailment called diverticulitis, and guard against cataract and macular degeneration, two common causes of vision loss.
What does “plenty” mean? More than most Americans consume. The latest dietary guidelines call for five to thirteen servings of fruits and vegetables a day.
The largest and longest study to date, done as part of the Harvard-based Nurses’ Health Study and Health Professionals Follow-Up Study, included almost 110,000 men and women whose health and dietary habits were followed for 14 years. This study found that the higher the average daily intake of fruits and vegetables, the lower the chances of developing cardiovascular disease.
Increasing fruit and vegetable intake by as little as one serving per day can have a real impact on health disease risk. According to these two studies, for every extra serving of fruits and vegetables that participants added to their diets per day, their risk of heart disease dropped by 4 percent!
Eat more vegetables and fruits! Stay healthy! And enjoy life to the full!