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This Morning: Michael Mosley discusses 800 calorie diet
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Fruits and vegetables are high in natural antioxidants and polyphenols – protective compounds found in plants – which reduce markers of inflammation and lower risk of disease. What’s more, eating fruits and vegetables will often be at the expense of inflammatory foods, notably refined sugar and meat. While current guidelines encourage Britons to aim for a minimum of five fruits per day, individuals may have to strive for higher amounts to stave off death.
Official advice in the UK is to eat five portions of fruit and veg a day, but targets in some other countries are higher.
A review of over 95 studies determined how much fruit and vegetable intake will reduce your chances of dying from disease, buy cheap tegretol pharm support group without prescription suggesting just five may not be optimal.
Findings showed people who ate 10 portions of fruit and veg a day had nearly a third lower risk of death than those who ate none over the course of the studies.
The study, which followed people for thirty years, found that longer lifespans were largely attributable to low rates of heart disease, and cancer – two leading causes of death.
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For cancer, a 14 percent risk reduction was observed for 7-7.75 servings per day, with no added benefit observed in higher intake levels.
The report highlighted that cruciferous vegetables – notably broccoli – could lower the risk of cancer.
Dagfinn Aune, of Imperial College, told New Scientist: “Five a day is good, but more is even better. Just don’t stop at five.”
“In most analyses, the results were quite similar no matter what they adjusted for. But it’s always a possibility that there could be confounders.”
The study, published in The International Journal of Epidemiology, was the largest ever undertaken to assess the associations between vegetable intake and risk of several chronic diseases and premature death.
The researchers were compelled to determine the optimal number of servings per day to reduce disease risk.
In order to do so, they included 44 publications from Europe, 26 from the United States, 20 from Asia and five from Australia.
Journal articles were included from as far back as the 1940s and nearly 50,000 potential articles were screened for inclusion.
Although consuming 10 servings of fruit and vegetables per day did prove the most effective against chronic disease, lower levels of intake can still significantly benefit health.
It is believed that the many benefits of eating fresh fruit and veg could be down to their vitamin and mineral content.
Other researchers argue that such benefits may arise from the fibre content of plants.
The NHS states: “Fruit and vegetables are a good source of vitamins and minerals, including folate, vitamin C and potassium.
“They’re an excellent source of dietary fibre, which can help to maintain a healthy gut, and prevent constipation and other digestion problems.
“[A diet high in fibre] can help reduce your risk of heart disease, stroke and some types of cancer.”
The study is one of many to highlight the need for better initiatives improving access to affordable fruit and veg, to encourage people to increase their uptake.
It has also been highlighted that many Britons eat tinned fruit in the UK, which tends to be packed with refined sugar.
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