Fruits and veggies delay onset of chronic diseases
Eating plenty of fresh fruit, vegetables and whole grains helps prevent people from developing more than one chronic disease, says a new medical research conducted by the University of Adelaide. The research examined the link between diet and 11 chronic diseases including anaemia, hypertension, diabetes, arthritis, hepatitis, coronary heart disease, asthma, stroke and cancer.
The findings say that people who eat a higher amount of fruit are less likely to develop any new chronic disease, while a high intake of vegetables helps prevent people with one chronic disease from developing a second. "The findings are in line with current food guides recommendations on fruits and vegetables and whole grain cereals," the researchers said.
"Risk factors such as smoking, lack of physical activity and nutrition are already known to be linked to the development of chronic disease. But this is the first time research has shown that nutrition itself is directly associated with the development of multiple chronic diseases over time," says study co-author Dr Zumin Shi.
"There is already a lot of general nutrition awareness among the population but this study reinforces the need for broad education programs about the benefits of healthy eating," Dr Shi added.
The results of the study, published in this month's issue of the journal Clinical Nutrition, looked at health, diet and lifestyle data of more than 1,000 Chinese people over a five-year period.
Give your children water – not sugar-full drinks
Parents should only serve water with meals and ban fizzy drinks and juices from the dining table in order to reduce their children’s intake of sugar, nutrition experts have said. Sugar-sweetened drinks, including sports drinks, are a major contributor to the obesity epidemic among children. While the obesity problem does not have easy solutions, avoiding sugary drinks will help, the experts assure.
The recommendation comes ahead of scientific advice to be published by Public Health England about how much sugar people should consume and proposed measures to reduce public levels of consumption. The UK government’s Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition will also publish a draft report on health and carbohydrates. The suggestions are expected to include efforts aimed at controlling the sugar intake of teens and children along with a tax on soft drinks.
The experts stated the major effect of sugar on health was that it acted as a source of calories in the food which could result in obesity. They also added that sugar, besides causing obesity, might raise the danger of heart complications and Type 2 diabetes as well.
As per the current guidance, calories from sugars should not be more than 11 per cent in the daily calories intake, whether it is added by manufacturer or in the cooking, and includes sugar from syrup, honey and fruit juice. The World Health Organization has also stated in its draft guidelines that sugars should not account for over 10 per cent of energy intake. It has advisesd that governments and people should target 5 per cent.