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Diet Rich in Apples and Pears may Lower Stroke Risk by 52%

Susan Patterson
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December 12th, 2012
Updated 12/12/2012 at 1:42 am
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pearsripe 260x162 Diet Rich in Apples and Pears may Lower Stroke Risk by 52%A well-balanced diet loaded with fresh fruit and vegetables is good for your health, providing a wealth of health benefits. Eating fruit and veggies can even reduce the risk of developing a chronic disease. Research indicates that eating white, fleshy fruits such as apples and pears could also reduce the risk of having a stroke significantly.

What’s in the White?

According to researchers from the American Heart Association, the white fleshy part of apples and pears contains a ton of soluble fiber, which is instrumental in reducing blood pressure and consequently lowering stroke risk. According to the Harvard School of Public Health, a diet rich in soluble fiber can lower the risk of heart disease and type-2 diabetes. In addition to fiber, white fleshy fruits contain a particular flavonoid, called quercetin that keeps plaque off of the artery walls. Apples and pears, along with cauliflower, chicory, cucumbers and bananas have high amounts of both fiber and quercetin.

Related Read: How to Prevent a Stroke

For the research, 20,000 people in Holland were involved in a ten-year study, where participants kept detailed diet records. When the data was analyzed it indicated that people who ate diets rich in fruits with white on the inside, particularly apples and pears, had a 52 percent lower risk of stroke. For each 25 g increase in white fruits and vegetable consumption, stroke risk was cut by 9%. A great way to cut your risk of stroke is to consume one apple per day.

“With strokes, the color on the inside matters more than the color on the outside. A new American Heart Association study… looked at more than 20,000 people over ten years. And they found that people who had diets high in fruits that on the inside were white had a 52 percent lower risk of stroke. It was actually primarily apples and pears — because they are white on the inside – (that were) linked with the lower risk of stroke,” Prevention magazine Contributing Editor Dr. Holly Phillips said.

High blood pressure and high cholesterol are two major risk factors to stroke. Smoking cessation on top of consuming apples and pears reduces the risk of stroke even further. Other considerations are family history of either a stroke or heart disease and diabetes.

Additional Sources:

CBS News

From around the web:

  • Barbara Nichols

    Do dried apples and pears have the same benefits? They're no longer "white," but are they chemically the same as fresh?

  • rose mary

    Preventing a Stroke is Important; but, learning how to survive a stroke is critical.
    Survive a Stroke Foundation was formed to educate the public on the signs of a stroke and to act fast when a stroke is in progress.
    Check the website for Survive a Stroke Foundation, starting in 2013, to learn how you can help yourself and others.