Five is OK but ten plus is better. I’m referring of course to our consumption of fruit and vegetables.
In 2014 a study, carried out by researchers at University College London, analysed information from more than 65,000 adults aged 35 years or older, who responded to the Health Survey for England. Researchers then followed up participants for an average of 7.7 years after their initial participation. Their findings were that we should all be eating at least seven portions of fruit and vegetables a day.
Now a new study by Imperial College London and reported in the International Journal of Epidemiology states that we should all be eating at least ten portions of fruit and vegetables a day to cut our risk of heart disease, stroke and cancer. The study which pooled data on 95 separate studies, involving two million people's eating habits, calculated such eating habits could prevent 7.8 million premature deaths each year.
A portion of fruit or vegetables is 80g which equates roughly to an apple, small banana or 3 tablespoons of spinach. Ten portions (800g) is associated with a 24% reduced risk of heart disease. Certain fruits and vegetables are also associated with lower risks for certain diseases. Green vegetables, such as spinach and kale and cruciferous vegetables such as cauliflower and broccoli are associated with lower risks of cancer, while citrus fruits, apples, pears, salads and cruciferous vegetables are associated with lower risks of heart disease. Fruit and vegetables have been shown to reduce cholesterol levels, blood pressure, and to boost the health of our blood vessels and immune system.
In the UK, only about one in three people eats the five portions a day recommended by the World Health Organization and yet is not difficult or expensive when compared to other food choices.
At The Raw Retreat we have been telling guests for years that five portions of fruit and vegetable a day is not enough. We not only serve many more portions than that whilst guests stay here but we also demonstrate inexpensive and easy recipes so that guests can easily incorporate more raw plant based meals into their diet when back home.
Not only do we consume lots of vegetables here but added to that, there is no meat, fish, eggs or dairy which are known to be risk factors to heart disease and cancer. Health promoting exercise and stress reduction are also part of our health, weight loss raw food and juice detox retreats.
The photo above is just one of the smoothies we make here at the retreat. In the smoothie there is 7g of protein, 20% of the daily supply of calcium, magnesium and potassium, along with 6 B vitamins (folate, niacin, pantothenic acid, riboflavin, thiamine, and B6). It also supplies the daily recommended intake of vitamins C and K and beta-carotene many times over.