Tuesday June 25, 2019

Eating Blueberries Every Day Improves Heart Health

Eating one cup of blueberries per day results in sustained improvements in vascular function

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Apple watch
The key health feature on Apple Watch is yet to arrive in India. Pixabay

Eating a cup of blueberries daily reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) by up to 15 per cent, according to a study.

The findings, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, suggest that blueberries and other berries should be included in diets to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.

“Having metabolic syndrome significantly increases the risk of heart disease, stroke and diabetes and often statins and other medications are prescribed to help control this rise,” said study lead author Aedin Cassidy, Professor at the University of East Anglia in Britain.

The researchers studied whether eating blueberries had any effect on metabolic syndrome – a condition, affecting 1/3 of westernised adults, which comprises at least three of the following risk factors: high blood pressure, high blood sugar, excess body fat around the waist, low levels of ‘good cholesterol’ and high levels of triglycerides.

Blueberries, Everyday, Heart Health
Eating a cup of blueberries daily reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease. Pixabay

For the study, the researchers investigated the effects of eating blueberries daily in 138 overweight and obese people, (aged between 50 and 75), and having metabolic syndrome.

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“We found that eating one cup of blueberries per day resulted in sustained improvements in vascular function and arterial stiffness – making enough of a difference to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease by between 12 and 15 per cent,” said Peter Curtis, co-author of the study. (IANS)

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Drinking Even 25 Cups of Coffee in a Day Not Bad for Heart, Says Study

The study was presented at the British Cardiovascular Society (BCS) conference in the UK

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Starbucks coffee
Starbucks coffee. Pixabay

There is good news for those who like their cup of coffee every morning. Drinking coffee, even up to 25 cups a day, is not as bad for arteries and heart as previously thought, says a study.

The researchers found that drinking coffee was not associated with stiffer arteries as previously thought.

Arteries carry blood containing oxygen and nutrients from heart to rest of the body. If they become stiff, it increases heart’s workload and raises the chance of heart attack or stroke

“Despite the popularity of coffee worldwide, different reports could put people off from enjoying it. While we can’t prove a causal link in this study, our research indicates coffee isn’t as bad for arteries as previous studies would suggest,” said Kenneth Fung, who led the data analysis for the research at the Queen Mary University of London.

For the study, involving 8,000 people in Britain, coffee consumption was categorised into three groups. Those who drink less than one cup a day, those who drink between one and three cups and those who drink more than three.

“Coffee is one of the most popular beverages and a lot is known about its physical effects,” said Sam Maglio, Associate Professor at the University of Toronto in Canada. Pixabay

No increased stiffening of arteries was associated with those who drank up to this high limit when compared with those who drank less than one cup a day, said the researchers.

“Although the study included individuals who drink up to 25 cups a day, the average intake among the highest coffee consumption group was five cups a day. We would like to study these people more closely in our future work to help advise safe limits,” Fung said.

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“This research will hopefully put some of the media reports in perspective, as it rules out one of the potential detrimental effects of coffee on our arteries,” said Metin Avkiran from British Heart Foundation.

The study was presented at the British Cardiovascular Society (BCS) conference in the UK. (IANS)