Eat Your Greens To Prevent Diabetes


Eating more green leafy vegetables can significantly reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, ~ see report published online in the British Medical Journal.


Green Leafy Vegetables & its benefits

Green leafy veg, rather than a healthy diet in general, were linked to benefits

Researchers have found that a diet rich in green leafy vegetables may reduce the risk of diabetes developing, BBC reported last week.

In an analysis of six studies into fruit and vegetable intake, only green leafy vegetables, including spinach and cabbage, were found to have a significant positive effect.

Taking 1.5 portion a day was found to cut type 2 diabetes risk by 14%, the British Medical Journal (BMJ) reports. A portion is classified as 80g.

However, experts urged people to continue to aim for five portions of fruit and vegetables a day.

The researches from Leicester University reviewed data from the studies of 220,000 adults.

They found that eating more fruit and vegetables in general was not strongly linked to a smaller chance of developing Type 2 diabetes but “there was a general trend in that direction”.

However, when It came to green leafy vegetables – which also include broccoli and cauliflower – the risk reduction was significant. The team calculated that a daily dose of 106g reduced the risk of diabetes by 14 per cent.

It is not clear why green leafy vegetables may have a protective effect, but one reason may be that they are high in antioxidants, such as vitamin C. Another theory is that they contain high levels of magnesium.

Study leader Melaine Davies, professor of diabetic medicine at the University of Leicester, said the message to eat five portions of fruit and vegetables a day remains an important one.

She added :” People like very specific health messages. We know that intake of fruit and vegetables is important, but this study suggests that green leafy vegetables seem to be particularly important in terms of preventing diabetes.”

The team is now planning a study on people with a high risk of developing diabetes to see if increasing their intake of vegetables like spinach and kale can help reduce their chances of being diagnoses with it.

Dr Iain Frame, the director if research at Diabetes UK, said :”We already know that the health benefits of eating vegetables are far-reaching but this is the first time that there has been a suggested link specifically between green leafy vegetables and a reduced risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.”

However, he warned that the evidence was limited and it was too early to isolate green leafy vegetables alone as method to cut the chances of developing the condition.

“We would be concerned if focusing on certain foods detracted from the advice to eat five portions of fruits and vegetables a day, which has benefits in terms of reducing heart disease, stroke, some cancers and obesity as well as type 2 diabetes.”

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Category: Diabetic Diet, Managing Diabetes