Herbfacts
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News: July 2021

Eating fruit can reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes

An array of fruit and vegetables which are high in antioxidants

Looking for a reason to eat more fruit this summer? A recent study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism reveals those who ate two servings of fruit a day reduced their chances of developing type 2 diabetes over the next five years by 36 %[i]

The researchers found an association between fruit intake and markers of insulin sensitivity, meaning that people who ate more fruit had to produce less insulin to lower their blood glucose levels. “This is important because high levels of circulating insulin (hyperinsulinemia) can damage blood vessels and are related not only to diabetes, but also to high blood pressure, obesity and heart disease,” said study author Nicola Bondonno. The same benefits were not found with fruit juice.

How your diet can help stave off the ageing process

A range of green vegetables

A plant-based diet rich in leafy greens could turn back the clock by as much as two years in just eight weeks by triggering changes in the DNA according to a recent US study[ii].

A group of healthy men aged between 50 and 72 took part in the study and were given a diet, sleep, exercise and relaxation programme to follow over two months. Their weekly diet included 9 oz of cruciferous veg such as broccoli or cauliflower, 13 .5 oz of colourful veg and two beetroots. They were also given three servings of liver and up to 10 eggs supplemented with a fruit and vegetable powder and a probiotic.  Another group followed their normal diet.

At the end of the programme those in the treatment group had an average score of ‘3.23 years younger’ than the normal eating group. The study reinforces the idea that simple changes in how we eat can have a significant impact on the genetic clock.

Going to bed earlier can reduce the risk of depression

Close up on woman sleeping

Shifting your sleep time earlier by just an hour decreases the risk of major depression reveals recent research[iii]. The study indicates, for example, that if someone who normally goes to bed at 1 a.m. instead goes to bed at midnight, and sleeps for the same duration as usual, they could cut their risk by 23 per cent. If they go to bed at 11 p.m., they could cut it by about 40 per cent.

“We found that even one-hour earlier sleep timing is associated with significantly lower risk of depression,” said researcher Celine Vetter from the University of Colorado. For those wanting to shift themselves to an earlier sleep schedule, Vetter offers this advice: “Keep your days bright and your nights dark,” she says. “Have your morning coffee on the porch. Walk or ride your bike to work if you can, and dim those electronics in the evening.”

 

[i] www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2021/06/210602091404.htm

[ii] www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2021/05/210527145327.htm

[iii] www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2021/05/210528114107.htm

 

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