Can an apple a day keep a stroke away?

Want to lower your risk of having a stroke?  According to an article posted September 15, 2011 on MedlinePlus.com“An Apple a Day Really May Keep the Doctor Away.”

According to a new study done by Linda M. Oude Greip, a postdoctoral fellow at Wageningen University in the Netherlands fruits and vegetables which have a white edible section like apples and pears may lower your risk of stroke by as much as 9% per 25 grams.

The study also showed that those with a high intake of white fleshed fruits and veggies tended to have as much as a 52% lower incidence of stroke then those who had a low intake.

These findings do not mean that you should skip other colored fruits and veggies however, "because other fruit and vegetable color groups may protect against other chronic diseases, it remains of importance to eat a lot of fruit and vegetables," Oude stressed

The study included 20,000 people between the ages of 20 and 65 at the start and followed them over 10 years. Over the 10 years 233 suffered from stroke. Oude and team studied the data which included a 178 food frequency questionnaire and discovered that those who ate white fruits and vegetables such as apples, pears, apple juice, apple sauce, bananas, cauliflower, chicory, cucumber and mushrooms had a much lower risk of having a stroke.

Jessica Shapiro, an associate wellness dietitian at Montefiore Medical Center in New York City, said, "Apples and pears are very good fruits. They're available year-round and are almost consistently good.

"As with any study, there are limitations. One is that the food intake was self-reported. Food frequency questionnaires are inherently biased because it's hard to remember exactly what you've eaten in the past. But, the positive thing to take from this is that everything we've been saying is confirmed again. Fruits and vegetables are good for you," she said.

The bottom line?  An apple a day can keep the doctor away.

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