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White Fruits, Vegetables Tied to Lower Incident Stroke Risk

A 25 grams/day increase in consumption of white fruits, vegetables lowers stroke risk by 9 percent

FRIDAY, Sept. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Higher consumption of white fruits and vegetables is associated with a lower risk of incident stroke, according to a study published online Sept. 15 in Stroke.

Linda M. Oude Griep, from the Wageningen University in the Netherlands, and colleagues investigated the associations of fruit and vegetable color groups with 10-year stroke incidence in 20,069 men and women between the ages of 20 and 65 years and without cardiovascular diseases at baseline. Data on habitual food consumption were collected via a 178-item food frequency questionnaire. Multivariate Cox proportional hazards models, after adjusting for age, gender, lifestyle, and dietary factors, were used to estimate hazard ratios (HRs) for stroke incidence. Fruits and vegetables were classified into four groups according to color.

The investigators found that 233 incident cases of stroke were recorded during the 10-year follow-up period. Median daily intake of green, orange/yellow, red/purple, and white fruits and vegetables were 62, 87, 57, and 118 grams/day, respectively. Incident stroke was not associated with green, orange/yellow, and red/purple fruit and vegetable consumption. Higher consumption of white fruits and vegetables was inversely associated with incident stroke (upper quartile, >171 grams/day; HR, 0.48) compared with participants with low consumption (lowest quartile, ≤78 grams/day). Every 25 grams/day increase in white fruits and vegetable intake lowered the risk of stroke by 9 percent (HR, 0.91). The most commonly consumed white fruits and vegetables were apples and pears (55 percent).

"High intake of white fruits and vegetables may protect against stroke," the authors write.

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