TIMES.KY

Cayman Islands, Caribbeanand International News
Friday, Mar 24, 2023

Eating veggies won't protect your heart, study says, but critics disagree

Eating veggies won't protect your heart, study says, but critics disagree

Eating a plant-based diet has been shown to be very good for your heart and your overall health, as well as that of the planet. In fact, a recent study found a young person could live an additional 13 years by eating more vegetables and legumes, as well as whole grains, fruit and nuts.

Which makes the findings of a new analysis of the diets of nearly 400,000 UK adults published Monday in the journal Frontiers in Nutrition rather startling: Eating veggies, especially cooked ones, doesn't reduce your risk of heart disease over time.

"Our large study did not find evidence for a protective effect of vegetable intake on the occurrence of CVD (cardiovascular disease)," said Qi Feng, an epidemiologist at the Nuffield Department of Population Health at the University of Oxford, in a statement.

While the study found eating raw veggies could protect against heart disease, cooked vegetables did not. Any benefit went away when researchers factored in lifestyle factors such as physical activity, educational level, smoking, drinking, fruit intake, red and processed meat consumption, and use of mineral and vitamin supplements.

"Instead, our analyses show that the seemingly protective effect of vegetable intake against CVD risk is very likely to be accounted for by bias ... related to differences in socioeconomic situation and lifestyle," Feng said.

Not so fast, critics say


Don't start celebrating yet, veggie haters. Experts in the UK and United States quickly took exception to the study's conclusion.

"Although this study found that eating more vegetables wasn't associated with a lower risk of heart and circulatory diseases once other lifestyle and other factors were taken into account, that doesn't mean we should stop eating vegetables," said Victoria Taylor, a senior dietitian at the British Heart Foundation, in a statement.

"There is good trial evidence that eating foods rich in fibre such as vegetables, can help lower weight, and improve levels of risk factors known to cause heart disease. The present observational study cannot overcome such evidence and its conclusions can be debated since the authors may have over adjusted for factors that account for lower intake of vegetables," said Naveed Sattar, a professor of cardiovascular and metabolic medicine at the University of Glasgow in Scotland, in a statement.

"The results are not surprising. Picking out one single component and assuming just adding it to the diet, e.g., vegetables, is not likely to result in the desired effect," Alice Lichtenstein, director and senior scientist at Tufts University's Cardiovascular Nutrition Laboratory, told CNN in an email.

"One thing that has become clear over the past decade is we should not be looking at single foods or nutrients, rather the whole dietary pattern," said Lichtenstein, who is also a Gershoff Professor of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University.

Only 5 tablespoons of vegetables


The study used data from the UK Biobank, a longitudinal study of nearly a half a million UK adults designed to investigate how genetics and environment contribute to many common diseases.

People were asked at the beginning of the study how many raw and cooked vegetables they ate, and then followed for over 10 years to see if they developed heart disease.

On average, people in the UK study reported eating an average of 5 tablespoons of vegetables each day -- that's only 71 grams or one-third of a cup. About 2.5 tablespoons were raw vegetables, the other three were cooked.

"That's so little," said Dr. Andrew Freeman, co-chair of the American College of Cardiology's Nutrition and Lifestyle Work Group.

Dietary guidelines in the UK call for five portions of fruits and veggies a day, with each portion being about 80 grams (1 cup), for a total of 5 cups a day.

In the US, dietary guidelines are more specific, recommending most adults eat at least 1.5 to 2 cups of fruit and 2 to 3 cups of vegetables each day as part of a healthy diet. Translating cups into tablespoons, a healthy intake of vegetables would include up to 48 tablespoons of veggies each day.

"That's a ton of tablespoons," Freeman said. "So the question is: If these people in the study were eating such a very small amount of vegetables, what else are they eating and how much did that confound these results?"

Gunter Kuhnle, a professor of nutrition at the University of Reading in the UK, also pointed to the impact of alternate food choices.

"People who don't eat vegetables need to eat something else -- and when estimating the health effect of eating vegetables it is important to consider what they replace," Kuhnle said in a statement.

"Replacing a sugary snack with carrot sticks is likely to improve health -- and have a beneficial effect on CVD risk. That wouldn't be the case when replacing a whole-grain snack with carrots," he said.

What's the takeway for the vegetable eating (and hating) public?

"This is a very interesting study -- but not one that should be used as a justification to stop eating vegetables," Kuhnle said.

"The best advice we can give people is to focus on their whole diet, what foods to emphasize as well as what to minimize," Lichtenstein said. "In general, I think the data still supports beneficial effects of a dietary pattern rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, fish, fat-free and low fat dairy and relatively low in added sugar and salt."

Newsletter

Related Articles

TIMES.KY
Close
0:00
0:00
Donald Trump arrested – Twitter goes wild with doctored pictures
NYPD is setting up barricades outside Manhattan Criminal Court ahead of Trump arrest.
Credit Suisse's Scandalous History Resulted in an Obvious Collapse - It's time for regulators who fail to do their job to be held accountable and serve as an example by being behind bars.
Home Secretary Suella Braverman tours potential migrant housing in Rwanda as asylum deal remains mired in legal challenges
Paris Rioting vs Macron anti democratic law
'Sexual Fantasy' Assignment At US School Outrages Parents
Credit Suisse to borrow $54 billion from Swiss central bank
Russian Hackers Preparing New Cyber Assault Against Ukraine
Jeremy Hunt insists his Budget will get young parents and over-50s back into work
If this was in Tehran, Moscow or Hong Kong
TRUMP: "Standing before you today, I am the only candidate who can make this promise: I will prevent World War III."
Mexican President Claims Mexico is Safer than the U.S.
A brief banking situation report
Lady bites police officer and gets instantly reaction
We are witnessing widespread bank fails and the president just gave a 5 min speech then walked off camera.
Donald Trump's asked by Tucker Carlson question on if the U.S. should support regime change in Russia?.
Silicon Valley Bank exec was Lehman Brothers CFO
In a potential last-ditch effort, HSBC is considering a rescue deal to save Silicon Valley Bank UK from insolvency
BBC Director General, Tim Davie, has apologized, but not resigned, yet, following the disruption of sports programmes over the weekend
Elon Musk Is Planning To Build A Town In Texas For His Employees
The Silicon Valley Bank’s collapse effect is spreading around the world, affecting startup companies across the globe
City officials in Berlin announced on Thursday that all swimmers at public pools will soon be allowed to swim topless
Fitness scam
Market Chaos as USDC Loses Peg to USD after $3.3 Billion Reserves Held by Silicon Valley Bank Closed.
Senator Tom Cotton: If the Mexican Government Won’t Stop Cartels from Killing Americans, Then U.S. Government Should
Banking regulators close SVB, the largest bank failure since the financial crisis
The unelected UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, an immigrant himself, defends new controversial crackdown on illegal migration
Man’s penis amputated by mistake after he’s wrongly diagnosed with a tumour
In a major snub to Downing Street's Silicon Valley dreams, UK chip giant Arm has dealt a serious blow to the government's economic strategy by opting for a US listing
It's the question on everyone's lips: could a four-day workweek be the future of employment?
Is Gold the Ultimate Safe Haven Asset in Times of Uncertainty?
Spain officials quit over trains that were too wide for tunnels...
Don Lemon, a CNN anchor, has provided a list of five areas that he believes the black community needs to address.
Hello. Here is our news digest from London.
Corruption and Influence Buying Uncovered in International Mainstream Media: Investigation Reveals Growing Disinformation Mercenaries
Givenchy Store in New York Robbed of $50,000 in Merchandise
European MP Clare Daly condemns US attack on Nord Stream
Former U.S. President Carter will spend his remaining time at home and receive hospice care instead of medication
Tucker Carlson called Trump a 'demonic force'
US Joins 15 NATO Nations in Largest Space Data Collection Initiative in History
White House: No ETs over the United States
U.S. Jet Shoots Down Flying Object Over Canada
Being a Tiktoker might be expensive…
SpaceX, the private space exploration company, made a significant breakthrough in their mission to reach space.
China's top tech firms, including Alibaba, Tencent, Baidu, NetEase, and JD.com, are developing their own versions of Open AI's AI-powered chatbot, ChatGPT
This shocking picture, showing how terrible is the results of the earthquake in Turkey
President Joe Biden delivered the 2023 State of the Union Address , in order to help Americans that missed the 2022 speech, do not have internet, and suffer from short memory.
The desk of King Carlos Alberto of Sardinia has many secret compartments
Today's news from Britain - 9th February 2023
The five largest oil companies in the West generated combined profits of nearly $200 billion in 2022, which has led to increased calls for governments to impose tougher windfall taxes
×