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Effect of dietary intake of fruits and vegetables on vascular function - a randomised controlled trial
Project Code: N02029
Fruit and vegetable intake is associated with reduced cardiovascular disease risk. This study has assessed the dose-dependent effects of a fruit and vegetable intervention (FV) on vascular function in subjects with hypertension. A total of 118 participants with mild hypertension were recruited and randomised to follow a low FV diet (1 portion/day), or to consume 3 or 6 portions of FV a day for 8 weeks. Vascular function measures and markers of dietary compliance were assessed before and after the intervention period. Compliance with the intervention was good, with participants consuming on average 1.1, 3.2 and 5.6 portions of fruit and vegetables in the 1, 3 and 6 portions/day groups respectively, and serum concentrations of ascorbic acid, lutein and -cryptoxanthin all increased in a dose-dependent manner as fruit and vegetable intake increased. For every 1 portion increase in reported fruit and vegetable consumption, there was a 6.2% improvement in forearm blood flow responses to intra-arterial acetylcholine (Ach) (p=0.03). There was also a trend towards a reduction in systolic blood pressure with increasing fruit and vegetable consumption. This study has shown that increasing fruit and vegetable consumption improves vascular function in hypertensives, and therefore is likely to also improve cardiovascular health.
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