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Apples and pears can cut stroke risk by more than 50 percent

Snack your way to slashed stroke risk

Just by changing the way you snack, you could slash your stroke risk by a whopping 52 percent.

It’s as simple as swapping those chips for a juicy pear or crunchy apple. That’s what Dutch researchers found in the course of a 10-year study of 20,069 heart disease-free adults.

The research was published in the Journal of the American Heart Association.

The findings? Adults who chowed down on white-fleshed fruits drastically reduced their stroke risk. That may be because of the high concentration of the flavonoid quercetin found in the fruits.

This is the first study to link fruit color to disease risk reduction. Green, orange, and red fruits didn’t hold a candle to the stroke-preventing power of the white fruits (though, of course, they have plenty of their own health benefits–all the more reason to live by the old adage “variety is the spice of life!).

In all, the researchers found that each 25g per day increase in consumption of white fruits and vegetables corresponded to a 9 percent lower risk of stroke. To break that down: An apple is around 120g on average–so just one apple per day translates to a 45 percent drop! And if you’re looking for some variety, the white-flesh category also included bananas, cauliflower, chicory, and cucumber.

The researchers were careful to separate fruit and vegetable intake from that of other food–a difficult task, but one that was worth it when the powerful results were revealed.

So, it looks like there really is something to that well-worn “apple a day” saying. Be sure to get plenty of these pale fruits and veggies in your diet and you’ll be well on your way to keeping yourself stroke free.

“White flesh fruits can cut stroke risk 52%: 10-year study” Nutraingredients USA (