Higher intake of fruits, vegetables, and antioxidants may help protect against oxidative damage, thus lowering cancer and cardiovascular disease risk. This Washington County, Maryland, prospective study examined the association of fruit, vegetable, and antioxidant intake with all-cause, cancer, and cardiovascular disease death. CLUE participants who donated a blood sample in 1974 and 1989 and completed a food frequency questionnaire in 1989 (N = 6,151) were included in the analysis. Participants were followed to date of death or January 1, 2002. Compared with those in the bottom fifth, participants in the highest fifth of fruit and vegetable intake had a lower risk of all-cause (cases = 910; hazard ratio (HR) = 0.63, 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.51, 0.78; p-trend = 0.0004), cancer (cases = 307; HR = 0.65, 95% CI: 0.45, 0.93; p-trend = 0.08), and cardiovascular disease (cases = 225; HR = 0.76, 95% CI: 0.54, 1.06; p-trend = 0.15) mortality. Higher intake of cruciferous vegetables was associated with lower risk of all-cause mortality (HR = 0.74, 95% CI: 0.60, 0.91; p-trend = 0.04). No statistically significant associations were observed between dietary vitamin C, vitamin E, and beta-carotene intake and mortality. Overall, greater intake of fruits and vegetables was associated with lower risk of all-cause, cancer, and cardiovascular disease death. These findings support the general health recommendation to consume multiple servings of fruits and vegetables (5-9/day).
- Cardiovascular diseases
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