Fruit Compounds Lower Stroke Risk by Nearly 20%

In All Health Watch, Featured Article, Heart and Cardiovascular, Stroke

A class of fruit compounds may cut your risk of stroke. The new research was just published in Stroke: Journal of the American Heart Association.

It was led by Aedín Cassidy, PhD. She’s a professor of nutrition at Norwich Medical School in the UK.

Her results show that women eating these fruits had nearly 20 percent lower risk of stroke.

She says the fruit compounds are responsible for “improved blood vessel function and an anti-inflammatory effect.”

Nearly 70,000 Women Studied

The evidence in this study is related to citrus fruits. The beneficial compounds are called flavanones. They’re a subclass of flavonoids, which are powerful antioxidants found in plants.

Dr. Cassidy’s study looked at 14 years of follow-up results from 69,622 women.

She studied their food intake… and their flavonoid consumption. Although she didn’t find any benefits between overall flavonoid consumption and stroke risk, she did find a connection to flavanones. She discovered that women eating fruits with high amounts of these compounds, particularly oranges and grapefruit, had a 19 percent lower risk of stroke.

And this isn’t the first time the connection has been made.

“Studies have shown higher fruit, vegetable and specifically vitamin C is associated with reduced stroke risk,” says Dr. Cassidy.

Another study out of Sweden had similar results. It followed 36,715 women and showed that greater consumption of antioxidants from fruits and vegetables led to fewer strokes.

One Form to Avoid

To benefit from these helpful compounds, you should always eat the whole fruit. Fruit juices not only have high sugar content, they’re also missing the fiber and some of the nutritional value found in the whole food. And whenever possible, opt for organic.

Try to have several oranges and grapefruits each week. And don’t forget about berries. In fact, blueberries have some of the highest flavonoid and flavanone content of any fruit.

There will be more studies on flavanones and stroke risk coming out in the future. We’ll update you with the newest findings.

To your best health,

Michael Jelinek,

Managing Editor, NHD “Health Watch”