Udayavni Special

Consuming a cup of leafy green vegetables daily can reduce risk of heart diseases: Study


Team Udayavani, May 7, 2021, 1:05 PM IST

 

Canberra: People can reduce their risk of heart disease by consuming just one cup of nitrate-rich vegetables daily as per a recent study.

The study, conducted by Edith Cowan University (ECU), investigated whether people who regularly ate higher quantities of nitrate-rich vegetables, such as leafy greens and beetroot, had lower blood pressure, and it also examined whether these same people were less likely to be diagnosed with heart disease many years later.

Around 17.9 million people die of Cardiovascular diseases each year, making it the number one cause of death globally.

Researchers examined data from over 50,000 people residing in Denmark taking part in the Danish Diet, Cancer, and Health Study over a 23-year period. They found that people who consumed the most nitrate-rich vegetables had about a 2.5 mmHg lower systolic blood pressure and between 12 to 26 per cent lower risk of heart disease.

Lead researcher Dr Catherine Bondonno from ECU’s Institute for Nutrition Research said identifying diets to prevent heart disease was a priority.

“Our results have shown that by simply eating one cup of raw (or half a cup of cooked) nitrate-rich vegetables each day, people may be able to significantly reduce their risk of cardiovascular disease,” Dr Bondonno said.

“The greatest reduction in risk was for peripheral artery disease (26 per cent), a type of heart disease characterised by the narrowing of blood vessels of the legs, however, we also found people had a lower risk of heart attacks, strokes and heart failure.”

The study found that the optimum amount of nitrate-rich vegetables was one cup a day and eating more than that didn’t seem to give any additional benefits.

As per the study findings, people need not rely on supplements to boost their nitrate levels as consuming one cup of leafy green vegetables daily is enough to reap the benefits for heart disease.

“We did not see further benefits in people who ate higher levels of nitrate-rich vegetables.”

Dr Bondonno said hacks such as including a cup of spinach in a banana or berry smoothie might be an easy way to top up our daily leafy greens.

The research adds to growing evidence linking vegetables generally and leafy greens specifically with improved cardiovascular health and muscle strength. This evidence includes two recent ECU studies exploring cruciferous vegetables and blood vessel health and green leafy vegetables and muscle strength.

 

With ANI inputs

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