Diets high in fruits, vegetables and whole grains linked to decreased risk of diabetes, study says

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The findings of two new studies link a lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes to a high consumption of fruit, vegetables and hearty whole grains.

The studies, recently published in The BMJ according to Science Daily, suggest that even a modest increase in consumption of these foods as part of a healthy diet could help prevent type 2 diabetes.

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For the first study, researchers looked at the association between blood levels of vitamin C and carotenoids, pigments found in colourful fruits and vegetables, with risk of developing type 2 diabetes. After studying 9,754 adults who developed new-onset type 2 diabetes and a comparison group of 13,662 adults who remained free of diabetes, researchers found that every 66 grams per day increase in total fruit and vegetable intake was associated with a 25% lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

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In the second study, researchers in the United States examined associations between total and individual whole grain food intake and type 2 diabetes. After examining 158,259 women and 36,525 men who were free from diabetes, heart disease and cancer, they found that participants in the highest category for total whole grain consumption had a 29% lower rate of type 2 diabetes compared with those in the lowest category.

Both research teams cite their findings as further evidence that adding more fruits, vegetables and whole grains to your diet can lead to a lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes.