14 October 2009

Don't want a heart attack? Eat your fruit with cream.

Supports Chapter 8: Why 'five portions'?

Over the last three months, I have been engaged in bringing my house into the 21st century. Taking out the remnants of a solar heating system that was great in the summer, when I didn't need it - and next to useless in the winter when I did, and replacing that with a high efficiency gas fire and a condensing boiler. All of which involved a lot of knocking down and rebuilding. And I'm not getting any younger! As a consequence, websites and blogging have had to take a back seat and a lot of controversial studies I should have written about have been missed.

But I felt I couldn't let this one go by:

A new Swedish study looking at fruit and veges in heart disease (click here for the full paper in PDF)arrived on my computer this morning. It finds that eating fruit and veg is only of benefit when combined with a high dairy fat intake. Without the dairy fat, not only was there little or no benefit from eating your 5 portions, the fruit and veg actually increased risk of a heart event by 70%!

What it's really saying, of course, is that to reduce the risk of a heart attack, eating fruit and veg are irrelevant, and may actually be harmful, and it's the saturated fat that is beneficial. So much for the UK's Food Standards Agency's advice to use skim milk and other low-fat dairy!

Oh, and by the way, the study found that eating wholemeal bread and fish twice a week were also of no benefit.