Asthma risk reduced by fruit and vegetables


A diet rich in vegetables such as leafy greens, tomatoes and carrots could cut the risk of asthma by approximately 20%, a recent study suggests.

In a prospective investigation of 68,535 women, researchers at the Instituto National de Salud Publica, in Mexico, found that those women who consumed more than 90 grams per day of leafy green vegetables had a 22% lower risk of asthma than those who ate less than 40 grams per day. Similar risk reductions were also seen with tomatoes (20%) and carrots (18%).

The women's dietary habits were recorded as part of the French arm of a European investigation into cancer and nutrition (EPIC) and their intake of the various foods was measured using questionnaires. Consumption of 208 food items was monitored.

The large number of asthma cases sampled, the wide variability of the participants' diets and an eleven year follow-up period all add weight to the conclusions of this study, which was published in the journal Thorax (Vol. 61, pp 209-215).


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