A new report shows that most of us still aren’t eating enough fruits and vegetables. At the same time, the report shows that eating more fruits and veggies can significantly reduce the risk of heart disease.
The report, which was recently published in the British Medical Journal, is based on sixteen studies involving over 800,000 people from around the world. The report shows that people who ate at least one serving of fruits and/or vegetables each day were approximately 5-percent less likely to die of any cause during the study. The report also shows that the risk of death decreased by a further 5-percent for every additional serving of fruits and/or vegetables consumed by the study participant.
Researchers found that eating more fruits and vegetables significantly reduced the risk of developing heart disease, but did not have a dramatic effect on cancer. It’s also worth noting that eating more than five servings of fruits and vegetables each day did not make a visible difference when it came to survival rates.
Dr. Frank B. Hu, the report’s senior author and professor at the Harvard School of Public Health, says it still can’t be proven that eating lots of fruits and vegetables saves lives because participants could have been making other life decisions that affected their health. However, Hu says it’s clear there’s some connection between a healthy diet and the development of heart disease.
Finally, the report also shows that people still aren’t eating enough fruits and vegetables each day. In general, health experts recommend people consume at least five servings of fruits and vegetables every day.
“Since the average consumption of fruits/veggies in the general population is far below five servings per day, there is still a long way to go before meeting the recommended intakes,” Hu said.