According to a recent study published in the American Journal of Epidemiology, consumption of fruits and vegetables lowers the risk of all cause mortality, particularly in cardiovascular disease related mortality. The analysis was done by European researchers from 10 countries, as part of the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition ( EPIC ). Studies so far have shown that eating fruits and vegetables helps prevent chronic diseases and that it can reduce mortality by 25 %, and the current study confirms these results. We know that eating fruits and vegetables is recommended for a healthy diet, so these results are not completely new. However it should be noted that this new study confirms and demonstrates that consumption of fruit and vegetables reduces mortality and that this decrease is more significant for cardiovascular disease mortality. MarÃa JosÃ© SÃ¡nchez PÃ©rez, director of the Andalusian School of Public Health ‘s ( EASP ) Granada Cancer Registry and one of the authors of the research, explained that this study is the largest epidemiological study that examined this association.
According to the study, combined consumption of fruits and vegetables of more than 569 grams per day can reduce the risk of mortality by 10% compared with the consumption of less than 249 grams per day. The study also showed that mortality risk may be delayed by 1.12 years. Also, the results show that for each increase in consumption of 200 grams per day of fruit and vegetables the risk is reduced by 6%. SÃ¡nchez pointed out that there is now sufficient evidence of the beneficial effects of fruit and vegetables on cancer and chronic disease prevention and added that promoting the consumption of fruits and vegetables is one of the most effective prevention measures. It has been shown that people who have a diet rich in fruits and vegetables have a risk of cardiovascular mortality by 15 % lower. It was also showed that 4% of deaths due to cardiovascular causes could be prevented by eating more than 400 grams of fruit and vegetables per day. When researchers analyzed the benefits of eating fruit separately, they found no significant risk reduction, while vegetables consumption alone was associated with a lower mortality risk . This risk was significant for raw vegetables, according to the study as it seems that high intake of raw vegetables decreases the risk of death by 16%. In terms of cancer related mortality, Sanchez said that the study did not prove any statistically significant risk reduction, but that this relationship should be evaluated in conjunction with the various types of cancer.