Vegetable and fruit intake and stroke mortality in the Hiroshima/Nagasaki Life Span Study.
Stroke. 2003 Oct;34(10):2355-60. Epub 2003 Sep 18. PMID: 14500940
BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Fruits and vegetables are known for their beneficial effects on chronic diseases. The purpose of the present study was to investigate the protective effect of a diet rich in fruits and vegetables on total stroke mortality and its 2 main subtypes in men and women separately. METHODS: A prospective cohort study of 40 349 Japanese men and women was initiated in 1980-1981 and followed until 1998. Fruit and vegetable intake was assessed at baseline on the basis of the response to a food frequency questionnaire. During the 18-year follow-up period, deaths from stroke were registered. RESULTS: A total of 1926 stroke deaths were identified during the follow-up period. An increasing frequency of intake of green-yellow vegetables and fruit was associated with a reduced risk of death from intracerebral hemorrhage and cerebral infarction. Daily intake of green-yellow vegetables was associated with a significant 26% reduction in the risk of death from total stroke in men and women compared with an intake of once or less per week. The protective effect associated with daily fruit and vegetable intake was observed for both cerebral infarction and intracerebral hemorrhage mortality but was slightly stronger and clearer for infarction than for hemorrhage, with a 32% reduction in men and a 30% reduction in women. Daily fruit intake was associated with a significant 35% reduction in risk of total stroke in men and a 25% reduction in women and was equally strong for both intracerebral hemorrhage and cerebral infarction. CONCLUSIONS: Daily consumption of green-yellow vegetables and fruits is associated with a lower risk of total stroke, intracerebral hemorrhage, and cerebral infarction mortality. The protective effects are similar in both men and women.