Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Can Stroke Risk Be Reduced by High Level of Vitamin-C?

A high-level consumption of fruit and vegetable can benefit one’s health, including prevention of heart disease and many other medical disorders because of the high contents of Vitamin-C found in fruit and vegetable

Researchers from the University of Cambridge, United Kingdom indicated in the American Journal of Nutrition in January 2008 that people’s level of Vitamin-C might be an indicator of their likelihood of getting a stroke.

In a 10-year study, they examined some 20,000 middle-aged and older residents of Norfolk, United Kingdom and found 448 strokes in the participants during an average period of 9.5 years. They also noted that people having the highest Vitamin-C concentration at the beginning of the study had a 42 percent lower risk of stroke compared with those with the lowest levels of Vitamin-C.

In fact, the protective effect of Vitamin-C against stroke remained, even after the researchers took into accounts for factors that could affect the risk (stroke), such as alcohol intake, blood pressure level, body mass index (BMI), cholesterol level, diabetes, prior heart attack, physical activity, use of supplement, and social use.

According to the researchers, the level of Vitamin-C found in the blood is a good biomarker of fruit and vegetable consumption, which contain many nutrients that may be biologically active and protective for stroke. They also argued that their study supports the existing body of evidence, which proposed stroke could be protected with high consumption of fruit and vegetable.

While other health experts also agree that fruit and vegetable are linked with many health benefits, including reducing stroke risk, it is still not known why or how the benefit occurs, or what kinds of fruit and vegetable are effective. Therefore, the best way is to consume a wide variety of fruit and vegetable.

Meanwhile, there is still no concrete evidence on the optimum intake of fruit and vegetable for reduction of stroke and cardiovascular disease. However, it is believed that an intake of 5 to 9 servings on a daily basis could actually benefit. As such, the public is encouraged to adopt a higher intake of fruit and vegetable.

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