Increasing the dietary intake of vegetables and fruits has long been recommended to reduce the incidence of heart disease and cancer, but now a recent meta-analysis research review published in the International Journal of Epidemiology (22Feb2017) has confirmed just how significant the benefits really can be. And the results are quite remarkable. Eating just 200 grams of fruit/vegetables per day, (equivalent to one apple and one medium sized carrot) reduces the incidence of heart disease by 16%, stroke reduction by 18%, and risk of premature death by 15%. Even more impressive is that eating ten servings per day (800 grams per day equivalent to two fruits, a generous sized salad, plus one cup cooked vegetables) produced dramatically increased benefits - a 24% reduced risk of heart disease, a 33% reduced risk of stroke, a 28% reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, a 13% reduced risk of total cancer, and a 31% reduction in premature deaths. Interestingly though, not all fruits/vegetables were credited with equal results. To see which fruits and vegetables were best at preventing heart disease and stroke, versus those that were best at cancer prevention, click on the link to a short summary article here.
Reference: Aune D,Giovannucci E, Boffetta P, et al. Fruit and vegetable intake and the risk of cardiovascular disease, total cancer and all-cause mortality–a systematic review and dose-response meta-analysis of prospective studies. (published online February 22, 2017). Int J Epidemiol, 2017. dyw319. doi: 10.1093/ije/dyw319