The importance of Fruit & Vegetables


With the rise of the low carb trend, fruit and veggie intake is often reduced and we hear things like "carrots are high carb" and "fruit is high in sugar".

But fruit and veg are really important to eat regularly- they are full of fibre, energy, vitamins and minerals.

So, I've compiled some of the evidence for eating fruit and veggies:

Shay et al. 2012-

Those with the highest intakes of fruit and veg had the lowest risk of cardiovascular disease. They also had a greater intake of non-haem iron (plant-based iron), magnesium, calcium, beta-carotene & vitamin A, C and E.

Dauchet et al. 2006-

The authors found an inverse association between fruit and veg consumption, and coronary heart disease. They found that risk of heart disease decreased by 7% for every additional portion of veg and by 4% for every portion of fruit.

Wang et al. 2014-

Meeting the 5-a-day recommendation reduces the risk of all-cause mortality. They found no further risk reduction with more than 5 portions.

Bradbury et al. 2014-

The EPIC study found an inverse association between fruit and veg consumption and the risk of colorectal cancer, gastro-intestinal cancer and lung cancers.

Li et al. 2014-

An increased consumption of fruit and leafy-greens decreased risk of type 2 diabetes. Risk of diabetes was reduced by 6% with one additional portion of fruit and by 13% with 0.2 portion of leafy-greens.

There's a lot of research demonstrating the positive effects of fruit and veggies, BUT it is important to remember:

  1. These studies show association, but do not prove causation. I.E. people who eat more veggies appear the have reduced disease risk, but this may not be because of the veggies- could be an unrelated factor that wasn't studied!

  2. Those with a high fruit and veg consumption are likely to engage in other positive health behaviours. These behaviours may be responsible for reduced disease risk (although it's most likely a combination of things).

Take home message:

Fruit and veggies contain a range of nutrients that are important for health- do not be afraid to eat plenty!

I challenge you!

With such a variety of fruit and veg available nowadays, there MUST be at least 5 you love. But I often hear that people don't like ANY! So this week, I challenge you all this to try a fruit or veg that you've never eaten before, or try a new way of cooking or eating one you didn't like in the past. Tell me what you try over on social media and share a pic! If you need ideas, let me know too :)

Lots of love,

Little O x

#fruit #veg #vegetable #science #evidencebased #nondiet #nondietnutrition #antidiet #nutritionist #nutritious #nutritionadvice

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