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The Easiest Way to Prevent a Heart Attack – 3 Simple Diet Hacks!

By on April 12, 2016
Eating an apple a day may keep the doctor away, but there’s now a new reason to eat up: It could significantly reduce your heart disease risk.

According to recent research published in the New England Journal of Medicine, people who ate fresh fruit daily were 40 percent less likely to die from a cardiovascular-related death, as well as 34 percent less likely to have a major coronary event, including heart attack or stroke.

As for the reason why, experts say fruits contain potassium and fiber, both of which help lower blood pressure and blood glucose. Both are correlated with a higher risk of cardiovascular problems later in life.

So if you aren’t eating fruits regularly already, now’s the time to start.

“It’s difficult to know whether the lower risk in people who eat more fresh fruit is because of a real protective effect,” says Zhengming Chen, senior author of the study and a professor at the University of Oxford. “If it is, then widespread consumption of fresh fruit in China could prevent about half a million cardiovascular deaths a year, including 200,000 before age 70, and even larger numbers of non-fatal strokes and heart attacks.”

The Research

For the study, scientists took their research to China, a country with reportedly low levels of overall fruit consumption. Researchers eventually narrowed down their research to several urban and rural areas of China, studying more than 512,000 adults between the ages of 30 to 70.  None of the participants had high blood pressure or cardiovascular disease when the study began.

To begin, researchers recorded how many fruits they consumed on a daily basis, which included apples, oranges, and bananas.

During follow-up, 5,173 participants eventually died from cardiovascular disease, of which over half included major coronary events, such as a heart attack or stroke.

Researchers then looked at their total fruit consumption–to surprising results.

After eliminating other factors that could influence their risk of cardiovascular events, researchers found that consuming at least 100 grams of fruit per day reduced their risk of cardiovascular problems by more than 30 percent. In addition, fruit was associated with other positive outcomes, such as low blood pressure, low blood glucose, and avoiding the use of tobacco.

Unfortunately, many Chinese adults still don’t consume nearly enough fresh fruits to reap these benefits, say researchers.

“The association between fruit consumption and cardiovascular risk seems to be stronger in China, where many still eat little fruit, than in high-income countries where daily consumption of fruit is more common,” says Dr. Huaidong Du, a University of Oxford researcher.

What This Means For You

Your heart thrives when you eat well, and this study shows proves this continues to be the case. To lower your risk of cardiovascular problems, try eating fresh fruits everyday–just 100 grams could lower your risk of heart attack and stroke by 34 percent.

Readers: Are fruits a part of your diet?  Why or why not?

Sources:
Lower Heart Disease Risk Linked to Fresh Fruit Intake in Chinese StudyHNGN.com
Fresh Fruit Consumption and Major Cardiovascular Disease in ChinaNEJM.org

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